The Three Elijahs
There were three
Original Prophet – Elijah
God sent Elijah to King Ahab of Israel with the announcement of the famine at just the right time in their history to try and turn the kingdom around before He possibly would have brought total disaster upon them.
It was between the years of 915-895 B. C. that Elijah was enlisted in God’s service as a prophet to be sent to Israel.
Though it is not specifically stated, it is necessary to repeat that Israel was at the crossroads between possible total rejection by God as His chosen nation, and God then possibly striking the earth with total destruction! (Malachi 4:6)
Remember, the threat was made once before by God, and would have happened, had not Moses pleaded with God for Israel (Exodus 32:7-14).
The Thread of History
In view of how Manasseh and Ephraim began to degenerate since World War II, it is necessary that we see the downhill slide of Israel after the deaths of Moses and Joshua and compare the two different times.
There is a real parallel between the two of them. And though the circumstances vary some, the sins were exactly the same at that time as they are in this end-time. Different times, but the same abominable and horrible sins in our time as they were then!
By following the thread of history it will become easier for us to see and understand why God sent the original Elijah then, and the Elijah of this end-time. Both were sent at the very exact times they were needed and for precisely the same reasons.
In view of that period of time, and the very possible destruction of Israel as a people, we can only express our thankfulness to God that the mission for which Elijah was raised up and used by Him was successful enough that He spared them. Had it not taken place, NO ONE would be alive today, including you and me! Think about it!
To enable us to see the parallels of the downward spiraling of the degeneracy of Israel to the very bottom of the moral cesspool and their horrible idolatrous pagan worship of Baalism in all its forms along with that of Astarte at that time, we will begin after the death of Joshua and pick up with their up and down relationship with God in the Book of Judges -- a very bloody Book of the Bible!
The State of Israel during the Judges
After the death of Joshua the judges ruled the kingdom of Israel. The book of Judges makes known this was a lengthy period of time when things really went wrong with the Israelites. It records a series of events that was repeated several times in the next 300 or so years of their history.
The people of Israel would drift away from God. To correct them, He allowed them to be oppressed by the nations around them. In their affliction they would cry out to God and He would deliver them by a judge to lead them. This was repeated over and over again during those many years.
The Book of Judges is the bloodiest book of the Bible for the simple and revealing reason of their not having a strong king ruling over them; as the result they did that which was right in their own eyes (Judges 21:25).
This long period of time was followed by the next two Books, commonly called I and II Samuel. In the beginning of the first book we find the prophet Eli, a sincere but ineffective ruler.
Israel Receives a King to Rule Them
After his death, Samuel, who was both a prophet and a judge, replaced Eli. He proved to be a very righteous and respected prophet.
Toward the end of his life Israel demanded to be ruled by a king like the nations around them after seeing the sons of Samuel were not going to be righteous rulers.
God heeded their demand and gave them Saul as their first king – a very popular choice, but lacked the most important characteristic of a leader, character! At the end of 40 years he was slain in battle and replaced by David, a man after God’s own heart.
Due to God’s good blessings under David’s capable rule, Israel prospered and was established as a major power in that time. He also reigned for 40 years. Before his death he appointed his son Solomon to succeed him (I Kings 1:28-40).
The Reign of Solomon
Solomon began his reign in 768 B. C., slightly under the age of 20. His reign was known as the golden age of Israel. The nation controlled the major trade routes and became very wealthy.
Israel had inherited the Promised Land that had been given to them because of God’s promise to Abraham (Genesis 12:7; 13:14-17; 22:15-18). They had power, prestige and prosperity. And God was prepared to give them even more if they would only obey Him (I Kings 9:4-7).
Jesus Christ spoke of Solomon’s glory, while comparing his golden age to the lowly lilies of the field at the height of their beauty and glory, when He said, “And yet I say to you that even Solomon in all of his glory was not arrayed like one of these” (Matthew 6:29)
This man was blessed far more than any man due to God appearing to him twice in dreams and granting him his desire of an understanding heart to rule the people of Israel wisely while discerning the difference between good and evil. His wisdom was known far and wide and greater than any man before or anyone after him. It gained him fame and he is celebrated both in the Bible and in legend.
World leaders sought audiences with this very wise king to gain answers to their very difficult questions (I Kings 3:12; 4:29-34; 10:1-13).
Solomon Builds the Beautiful Temple of God
God used Solomon in the beginning years of his reign to build the magnificent and beautiful Temple that was designed by none other than God Himself! It was awesome to behold and became known as one of the wonders of the world (I Kings 6:11-14, 38).
Though his father, King David, had desired to build this beautiful Temple that would represent the presence of God dwelling in it, he was denied that opportunity and blessing (I Chronicles 17:1-4; I Kings 5:3).
However, God did choose to give the design and details of the construction of it to David (I Chronicles 28:19). He then began to accumulate all the materials that would go into the building of it.
In so doing, he said, “. . . the house that is to be built for the LORD must be exceedingly magnificent, famous and glorious throughout all countries. I will now make preparation for it” (I Chronicles 22:5).
The Building of the Temple Completed
After the completion of this magnificent Temple of God, Solomon had the ark of God brought into the Most Holy Place inside the Temple from where it had been located in the city of David, which was Zion (II Chronicles 5:1-3; I Kings 8:1-2).
Solomon then assembled the elders and people of Israel to dedicate it during the Feast of Tabernacles, while asking in prayer on his knees with arms uplifted for God’s good blessings upon it and His people (II Chronicles 6:12-42).
God Responds to Solomon’s Prayer
God appeared the second time to Solomon after the dedication and his prayer for the people of Israel. Solomon was then told that his prayer had been heard and His blessings would be upon his family and Israel AS LONG as they obeyed the laws of God (I Kings 9:2-9).
If they disobeyed then Israel would be CUT OFF from this Promised Land and the Temple would be cast out of God’s sight! It would be destroyed! (I Kings 9:1-9; II Chronicles 7:19-20).
Solomon reigned well for the first few years. But in his older age he began to show a serious character flaw by disobeying God by taking many foreign women as his wives.
Solomon’s Departure from God
Solomon, in all his glory, began to forget the wonderful God who gave him such great and famed wisdom that surpassed all of mankind.
True to the warning from God, these foreign women led him away from the worship of the true God and he became involved with these wives in worshiping Baal (I Kings 11:1-8)! In so doing he led Israel into the same idolatrous worship by his example.
Even though he saw the magnificent Temple on a daily basis, he let slip from his mind this great and beautiful Structure represented God’s holy presence in their very midst; the true and only God who had appeared to him twice.
Solomon’s downfall was like that of many world leaders, and mankind in general: a love for women. Scripture reveals he had 300 wives and 700 concubines. Among them were the foreign women. And because of his love and desire to please these beautiful women he permitted them to lead him into idol worship. This brought about his rejection by God.
These foreign women were steeped in the worship of pagan gods and had been expressly forbidden by God for him to take as his wives (I Kings 11:1-9). As the result, they led Solomon away from the true worship of God into an idolatrous worship:
“For it was so, when Solomon was old (probably early 50s), that his wives TURNED HIS HEART AFTER OTHER GODS; and his heart was NOT LOYAL to the LORD his God, as was the heart of his father David” (I Kings 11:1-4).
Solomon even built a high place for the worship of the pagan god Chemosh. It was a place where the people of Israel and his foreign wives could worship and even sacrifice their little babies to this pagan deity, as Scripture makes known:
Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD, . . . Then Solomon built a high place for Chemosh the abomination of Moab, on the hill east of Jerusalem, and for Molech the abomination of the people of Ammon. And he did likewise for all of his foreign wives, who burned incense and sacrificed to their gods (I Kings 11:6-8).
God Turns Against Solomon
Because of Solomon’s continued sinning against God, He raised up adversaries against him and the kingdom of Israel, just as we find with the house of Joseph today (I Kings 11:14-26). Before his death, God made known to Jeroboam through His prophet Ahijah, that He was going to TEAR AWAY the 10 Tribes of Israel and make him their king.
God explained through Ahijah that this was because they had forsaken Him and worshiped Ashoreth (female goddess, Semiramis), the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of Ammon. (I Kings 11:30-33).
The Reign of Rehoboam and Jeroboam
After Solomon’s death, he was succeeded by his son, Rehoboam, who began his rule over all of the tribes of Israel.
It was at the beginning of his reign that God brought about the split between the 10 nations of Israel and the Tribe of Judah (Benjamin and Levi chose to remain with Judah). The 10 nations of Israel were then given to Jeroboam, who was to be their new king (I Kings 12:15-16).
Even though Jeroboam heard the same warning from this prophet of God that was given to Solomon, he later put it out of his mind for fear of losing his kingship over the 10 Tribes of Israel (I Kings 11:26-39).
Israel Fully Departs from God
Like so many despotic rulers, Jeroboam feared the loss of his rule over the 10 tribes due to reuniting with Judah (Benjamin and Levi were afterwards obscured under the one name of Judah) during the Holy Days when all were commanded to go to Jerusalem to observe those Days.
To prevent this from taking place, Jeroboam then established his own festival patterned after the Feast of Tabernacles, but moved it forward to the eighth month instead of the seventh month as God had commanded (I Kings 12:25; Leviticus 23:33-34).
NOTE: Though Jeroboam was from the Tribe of Ephraim, and reared in Israel, he had recently spent time in Egypt out of Solomon’s reach, where he had learned of their ways, worship of the heathen gods, and religious customs (Jeremiah 10:1-5; I Kings 11:26-28, 40).
Jeroboam gave Israel their gods, just as did Aaron and the leaders of Israel in the desert while Moses was up in the mountain with God for 40 days (Exodus 32:4, 8). These gods he introduced to Israel in defiance of the direct teachings of God (I Kings 12:28; II Chronicles 11:15; Deuteronomy 12:30-32; 18:9).
From the Ambassador College Correspondence Course, Lesson 40, Page 11, we learn that this is the first Bible record of the celebration of Halloween – a holiday that corresponds to God’s Feast of Tabernacles. Halloween is a counterfeit of God’s Festival, which reveal, not goblins, but the resurrection.
Dr. C. Paul Meredith once told me that he felt the state and local fairs that are normally held in the fall of the year were designed to replace the Feast of Tabernacles.
People can derive happiness of a sort from attending them and as such they do not miss out completely from the happiness they would have had attending the Feast of Tabernacles. He did not say, nor do I, that it is wrong to attend these fairs, but they should never replace the joy and happiness derived from observing the Feast of Tabernacles.
Jeroboam chose to place his festival close enough to the commanded time of observance so that the people of Israel would not feel left out of all the joy and happiness that comes through the celebration of the real Festival.
The Golden Calves Represented Satan Worship
Jeroboam also set up the two golden calves for Israel to worship (explained above). The desire was still there to worship this calf that was molded into the form of a cherub with wings, as Satan, the fallen cherub (Ezekiel 28:14).
To make the worship of it convenient, he set one up in Bethel and the other one in Dan. This saved them from making a much longer trip to Jerusalem to observe the true Feast. He realized the nature of the people of Israel in not wanting to travel any farther than they had to, for the roads were dusty and the sun was hot.
At the same time, they had no real desire to worship the true God any longer, for His laws restricted them from a licentious and immoral way of life. They had their gods with no real restrictions!
Rather than seeking the Levites to be priests, Jeroboam chose men of his own devising from every class of people (I Kings 12:31); men who really knew not the laws of God. He also changed the observance of the 7th Day Sabbath to the Day of the Sun-God, the day we call SUN-day, the first day of the week.
In addition to other pagan beliefs, the king of Israel followed in the same teachings until Israel went into captivity to Assyria.
A Brief History of Israel’s Idolatry while in Egypt
For further understanding of what we find with Solomon’s turning away from God, to then be followed by Jeroboam who turned fully to the worship of idols, we need to briefly review the beginning history of Israel from the time of Abraham; for it is through his descendents that the nation of Israel came into existence and prominence as God’s chosen nation.
The Life of Abraham
When we study the life of Abraham we find a man who obeyed the voice of God and walked in all His commandments, statutes and judgments (Genesis 26:5). Because Abraham’s heart was devoted to Him in obedience, God knew he would obey whatever he was told to do by Him.
With His great plan for the ultimate salvation of mankind, God told him to leave his home country and go to a land that was unknown to him.
It would be in his land that God would make of him a great nation and would give him and his offspring forever all the land he would see (Genesis 12:1-4). Sometime later Abraham was shown in a vision that first his descendants (12 grandsons) would be forced to go to Egypt due to a famine in Palestine.
There they would dwell for 400 years, and during those years they would become the slaves of the Egyptians (Genesis 15:12-16; Exodus 1:11). Further, God told him his descendants would return to the land He would send him in the 4th generation (Genesis 15:16).
The land of Egypt, according to other evidence, was full of the worshipers of the Mysteries of Semiramis.
NOTE: The SYMBOLS that represented those pagan teachings and worship were in evidence when I visited Cairo, Egypt in 1981.
The Israelites remained captives among them for most of those 400 years. There they learned how to worship the first ‘savior’ – Tammuz and his ‘virgin’ mother – the queen of heaven (Semiramis). They forgot the True God, but God had not forgotten them because of His promise to Abraham (Genesis 15:16).
True to His promise, God led them out of Egypt and promised He would make them the greatest of nations if they would forsake their idol worship and follow Him. If they would not, He said He would punish them severely (Leviticus, chapter 26).
It was only a short period of time after the Israelites began their journey to the Promised Land that the people demanded Aaron make them an idol to worship, instead of God; they wanted the same old pagan gods they had known in Egypt (Exodus 32:1).
Though there were hints of change here and there in the Kingdom of Israel regarding the worship of Baal and Asheroth, Scripture makes known that every one of the 19 kings that ruled over the House of Israel never ceased worshiping THE GOLDEN CALF – the symbol of the FIRST ‘SAVIOR!
A Renewal of their Pagan Worship
With Jeroboam as their new king, and his full acceptance of the idolatrous worship of the two golden calves, Israel eagerly accepted the same idolatrous worship they had known while living in Egypt.
Though Solomon had opened up the way for them to begin the worship of Baal and Asheroth, Jeroboam led them even more deeply into that pagan worship, along with the golden calves, by changing the observance of God’s Sabbath to Sunday. He also caused them to cease from observing the Holy Days by establishing his own calendar.
They begin worshiping the pagan gods of the land and accepting their evil, vile, and murderous practices, along with a great loss of morals as well.
Jeroboam made his own decrees regarding calf worship and also the religion of Baalism (I kings 12:26-33). What he did carried through all the kings of Israel and, believe it or not, it yet exists today with the public at large in the House of Israel, and in their religious worship – some of it has even carried over into God’s Church, as will be explained further on in the latter part of this writing.
The Kings Who Followed Jeroboam
All the kings who followed Jeroboam were bad until Omri, who was very bad (I Kings 16:23-26). However, he only paved the way for his son, Ahab, who was to succeed him after his death, and who was worse than all of the kings before him.
It is during this king’s reign that one wonders if Israel might have been destroyed had God NOT sent Elijah to them.
Is there a possible parallel with the man or woman who will very possibly become the next president in the modern-day tribe of Manasseh? I seriously wonder. Read on and we will consider this possibility.
Israel Reaches Bottom
With this background in mind, and the most evil king of all to follow, it should make it easier for the reader to understand the whys and wherefores that brought about the necessity of God sending the prophet Elijah to the king of Israel to declare a terrible famine to come on Israel.
A famine that would be so severe that it would make possible for God through Elijah to get the attention of the evil king and the people of Israel with the purpose of turning them around – even though it would only last for a little time.
King Ahab the Worst King of All Kings in Israel
Ahab, the son of Omri, succeeded his father on the throne of Israel. As already stated, his reign was the worst one of all, as Scripture reveals: “But there was no one like Ahab who SOLD himself to do wickedness in the sight of the LORD, BECAUSE his wife STIRRED HIM UP. And he behaved abominably in following idols (as do Christian Churches today), according to all that the Amorites had done, whom the LORD had CAST OUT before the children of Israel (I Kings 21:25-26).
It is not difficult to see the parallel of today’s society and Queen Jezebel who STIRRED UP Ahab, her husband. Consider what God led another prophet to write about our time while considering the women who have been elected to be members of the House of Representatives and Senators, Governors and Judges along with other very high positions in Government, and even as ministers in the world’s Churches.
“As for My people, children are their oppressors, WOMEN RULE OVER THEM. O My people! THOSE WHO LEAD YOU CAUSE YOU TO ERR (margin: lead you astray), AND DESTROY THE WAY OF YOUR PATHS. . . .” (Isaiah 3:16-24; 3:12)
From the writings of retired Judge Robert Bork, Slouching Towards Gommorah, Pages 208-225, he wrote of the impact that Radical Feminism is having on this country.
Please note a short quote from his writings on that subject: “Radical feminists today, like the radical students of the sixties, have discovered that they have the power to make the Establishment cringe, and back down, and so, their demands escalate” (page 216).
Speculations abound from high officials and others as to who could become the next president in this country in 2008. Many expect it very well could be Senator Hillary Clinton fulfilling that prophecy in Isaiah. If so, one can be sure her husband will be at her side.
At the same time we would do well to learn about the man who might be the next president and wonder how much influence his wife might have on him, as Jezebel did on King Ahab. It won’t be long before everyone will know.
It has recently been said on a talk show hosted by Glenn Beck that this country is now facing greater problems than any time in our history. At the same time it was said those running for office are not up to the task of resolving them.
There are red flags flying all over this nation!
Definition of Names
For further understanding, it seems necessary that we understand the meaning of the name of Baal and the name of the Amorites. Both of these names played a major role in the history of Israel and led to their alienation from God and their demise as a kingdom.
It may be surprising to some, but Baalism never did fully go away! It is well established in a most prominent role in the religions of today. And sad to say, it is also found in the history of the Church of God and still exists today.
With this in mind, it is needful to know and understand these pagan gods’ names and how they were worshiped.
BAAL – A general name for heathen gods. When Israel entered the land of Canaan they found that every piece of land had its own deity, its owner. Thus, there were many Baals.
AMORITE – Though this was the name of a specific people of Canaan, the name was also used as a general term for the inhabitants of Canaan (Genesis 48:22; Joshua 24:15).
The Kings Ruling Israel Led Them Astray
Under the rulership of the previous kings, Israel had become very involved in the beliefs and evil practices of the religion of Baalism contrary to the WARNING from God, which was very explicit:
“When the LORD your God cuts off from before you the nations which you go to dispossess, and you displace them and dwell in their land, TAKE HEED to yourself that you are NOT ensnared to follow them, after they are destroyed from before you, and that you DO NOT enquire after their gods, saying, ‘How did these nations serve their gods, I also will do likewise.’ “You shall NOT worship the LORD your God in that way; for every abomination (margin: detestable action) to the LORD which HE HATES they have done to their gods; FOR THEY BURN EVEN THEIR SONS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE FIRE TO THEIR GODS! Whatever I COMMAND you, BE CAREFUL TO OBSERVE IT; you shall NOT add to it NOR take away from it” (Deuteronomy 12:29-32).
Because of the kings of Israel’s failure to obey God’s law about entering into marriage with men and women of Gentile nations with their abominable religious practices, the way was opened wide to the people of Israel to fully accept these same practices and be absorbed by them (Deuteronomy 7:1-11).
King Ahab married the very worst and most influential of the Gentile women, Jezebel. She was the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians (Eth-baal, ‘with Baal’ king of Tyre, and priest of godless Astarte).
Princess Jezebel, daughter of Ethbaal, after becoming the wife of King Ahab, and now queen, brought into Israel the very worst kind of worship of Baalism. She was also a priestess and prophetess of Baal and Astarte:
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Volume III, Page 1676
“. . . it must be clear that the Baal whom Jezebel attempted to introduce was the Phoenician Baal, pure and simple, he was another god, or rather in him was presented an idea of God very different from Jeh, And further, ‘in Phoenicia, where wealth and luxury, had been enjoyed on a scale unknown to either Israel or the Canaanites of the interior, there was a refinement, if one may so speak, and at the same time a prodigality of vicious indulgences, connected with the worship of Baal and Astarte to which Israel had hitherto been a stranger . . . It was like a cancer eating into the vitals or a head and heart sickness resulting in total decay (Isaiah 1:6). In Israel, moral deterioration meant political as well as spiritual death.”
To those who have eyes to see, the parallel of today reveals a great similarity to what we find in the nations of Israel and its Churches in our time today! When we consider this overview of the continued political and spiritual deterioration of Israel, and how Satan used this evil woman to introduce the very worst kind of worship of Baal and Astarte in Israel, it is plain to see she stole away the heart and soul of God’s chosen nation!
It was at this low level in the life of Israel that God sent Elijah with the effort of turning them back to the true God. Due to the miracles God performed through him, Israel did make a turnaround for some time back to Him. We can only imagine what would have happened to them otherwise.
With this in mind, perhaps we can better understand the mission given to Elijah by God; the very same commission given to the Elijah in our time because of the very same cancerous growth in our society today that could have brought God’s wrath so severe as to blot out human life.
Holy Scripture makes known the critical judgment and foreboding problems to be brought on Israel is from God Himself! And each time it was intended to be corrective with the desire of turning His chosen people back to Him, the true God.
As it was then, so is the same true in our time today, that God would send another man who would be in the same spirit and power of Elijah to fulfill the like mission (Malachi 4:4-6; Matthew 17:11). This will be made known later in this book.
An Overview of God Dealing with the Wicked
Due to the flagrant disobedience of God’s warning through Moses to them (Deuteronomy 12:29-32), Israel completely put the true God out of their minds. They went all out in the practices of Baalism; and because of this, that period of time was so violent, wicked, and evil, that God used Elijah, and a little later, Jehu, to slaughter all those in Israel who had become involved in that despicable religion.
King Ahab and Jezebel themselves were killed later, but at different times. True to His promise of WARNING FIRST (Amos 3:7), God used Elijah as His prophet and representative, to begin the removal of Baalism, by first making known to King Ahab the severe famine that would last for three and one-half years because of their extreme wickedness and vile idolatrous practices.
This was intended to be a corrective measure, and it did turn out that way due to God’s miraculous answer to the prayer of Elijah at the offering of the sacrifice. The people of Israel who were gathered there then returned to the true God upon seeing this awesome miracle.
Elijah then had Israel kill all the prophets of Baal!
However, Jezebel was clever enough to keep her prophets with her; and they remained alive. A little later God used Jehu, as a leader of Israel and representative of Him, who would practically eliminate the worship of Baalism and Astarte by slaughtering all who were connected with it. He even had Jezebel killed.
As the result, there was no longer a wholesale sacrificing of babies during that time. Presumably, most of the people of Israel had their hearts turned back to their families.
In a similar manner, God was to send a man today to turn the hearts of the families around to one another -- LEST HE SMITE THE EARTH WITH A CURSE (Hebrew: utter destruction, Malachi 4:6).
It should be realized that Elijah, John, nor the man sent by God in our time, would totally turn the hearts of all the families in Israel back to each other during their missions. Scripture implies it would only be a large enough number so that God would spare everyone.
To aid our understanding, consider a principle drawn from ancient times when Abraham pleaded with God to spare Sodom and Gomorrah for the sake of the righteous dwelling in those cities. God listened and promised to turn away His destructive wrath if there were as few as 10 righteous people found to be living there (Genesis 18:22-33).
From this and other examples in the Bible, we can see that when the majority overwhelms the righteous, God removes the righteous and deals severely with the wicked. This can be seen with Noah and his immediate family, Lot and his immediate family, and the Church in Jerusalem in 70 A. D.; and in the near future Scripture makes known that Jesus Christ will remove the true elect members of His Church to a place of safety just before the beginning of the Great Tribulation (Revelation 12:14). History will be repeating itself.
From what can be witnessed in our time, the majority is well underway of overwhelming the righteous and will fully do so just before the Great Tribulation.
The difference with John the baptizer and the Elijah in this end time would NOT be to slaughter the wicked, but to MAKE KNOWN AND TO WITNESS of the coming slaughter that Jesus Christ Himself will inflict on them when He returns to this earth!
And Scripture reveals Jesus Christ will do this, UNLESS there is REPENTANCE of their evil and wicked ways (Ezekiel 3:17-21; 33:1-20; II Thessalonians 1:7-10).
There was no real indication of repentance by Judah during the mission of John the Baptizer, nor in Israel from the preaching of Elijah in this the end-time, though the warning was preached to both of them.
Even many of those who did hear and turn away from the idolatrous worship of Baalism and sin, turned back to their old way of life after the deaths of Elijah, John the Baptizer, the Messiah, and the Elijah to come.
Scripture makes known that those of us who yet remain within the true teachings will continue to be tested with even more difficult trials before the coming of Christ. The most difficult time will be when deception will be the strongest due to miracles being performed by false ministers – possibly by those who are now within the Churches of God (Matthew 24:23-24).
This will be followed by severe persecution by its leading false prophet on those who refuse to accept the idolatrous worship of Baalism, and will have the man, called the Beast, to enforce its mark (666) on pain of death (Revelation 13:15-18)
And from what the new man in that office is saying about Sunday observance being a real necessity, as well as other things, it appears he could very well be the one that Scripture tells us will hold that final office. It will not be very long before we will know for sure.
Once this mark is enforced, the whole Christian world will return to their mother church and be absorbed completely within the embrace of this universal Church by the real representative of Baalism (Revelation 13:13-14)!
It will only be the very true people of God who will refuse to become a part of this great false religion! The protesting daughters (Protestants) will be forced to change their minds and accept the worship of this chief prophet of Baal, and the Beast, and their system, or they will be killed as well (Revelation 13:11-18)!
Remember the inquisition?
From the Internet: “The Inquisition was a Roman Catholic tribunal for discovery and punishment of heresy, which was marked by the severity of questioning and punishment and lack of rights afforded to the accused.
While many people associate the Inquisition with Spain and Portugal, it was actually instituted by Pope Innocent III (1198-1216) in Rome. A later pope, Pope Gregory IX established the Inquisition, in 1233, to combat the heresy of the Abilgenses, a religious sect in France. By 1255, the Inquisition was in full gear throughout Central and Western Europe; although it was never instituted in England or Scandinavia.
Initially a tribunal would open at a location and an edict of grace would be published calling upon those who are conscious of heresy to confess; after a period of grace, the tribunal officers could make accusations. Those accused of heresy were sentenced at an auto de fe, Act of Faith.
Clergyman would sit at the proceedings and would deliver the punishments. Punishments included confinement to dungeons, physical abuse and torture. Those who reconciled with the church were still punished and many had their property confiscated, as well as were banished from public life. Those who never confessed were burned at the stake without strangulation; those who did confess were strangled first. During the 16th and 17th centuries, attendance at auto de fe reached as high as the attendance at bullfights.
In the beginning, the Inquisition dealt only with Christian heretics and did not interfere with the affairs of Jews. However, disputes about Maimonides’ books (which addressed the synthesis of Judaism and other cultures) provided a pretext for harassing Jews and, in 1242, the Inquisition condemned the Talmud and burned thousands of volumes. In 1288, the first mass burning of Jews on the stake took place in France.
In 1481 the Inquisition started in Spain and ultimately surpassed the medieval Inquisition, in both scope and intensity. Conversos (Secret Jews) and New Christians were targeted because of their close relations to the Jewish community, many of whom were Jews in all but their name. Fear of Jewish influence led Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand to write a petition to the Pope asking permission to start an Inquisition in Spain. In 1483 Tomas de Torquemada became the inquisitor-general for most of Spain, he set tribunals in many cities. Also heading the Inquisition in Spain were two Dominican monks, Miguel de Morillo and Juan de San Martin.
First, they arrested Conversos and notable figures in Seville; in Seville more than 700 Conversos were burned at the stake and 5,000 repented. Tribunals were also opened in Aragon, Catalonia and Valencia. An Inquisition Tribunal was set up in Ciudad Real, where 100 Conversos were condemned, and it was moved to Toledo in 1485. Between 1486-1492, 25 auto de fes were held in Toledo, 467 people were burned at the stake and others were imprisoned. The Inquisition finally made its way to Barcelona, where it was resisted at first because of the important place of Spanish Conversos in the economy and society.
More than 13,000 Conversos were put on trial during the first 12 years of the Spanish Inquisition. Hoping to eliminate ties between the Jewish community and Conversos, the Jews of Spain were expelled in 1492.
The next phase of the Inquisition began around 1531, when Pope Leo X extended the Inquisition to Portugal. Thousands of Jews came to Portugal after the 1492 expulsion. A Spanish style Inquisition was constituted and tribunals were set up in Lisbon and other cities. Among the Jews who died at the hands of the Inquisition were well-known figures of the period such as Isaac de Castro Tartas, Antonio Serrao de Castro and Antonio Jose da Silva. The Inquisition never stopped in Spain and continued until the late 18th century.
By the second half of the 18th century, the Inquisition abated, due to the spread of enlightened ideas and lack of resources. The last auto de fe in Portugal took place on October 27, 1765. Not until 1808, during the brief reign of Joseph Bonaparte, was the Inquisition abolished in Spain. An estimated 31,912 heretics were burned at the stake, 17,659 were burned in effigy and 291,450 made reconciliations in the Spanish Inquisition. In Portugal, about 40,000 cases were tried, although only 1,800 were burned, the rest made penance.
The Inquisition was not limited to Europe; it also spread to Spanish and Portugese colonies in the New World and Asia. Many Jews and Conversos fled from Portugal and Spain to the New World seeking greater security and economic opportunities. Branches of the Portugese Inquisition were set up in Goa and Brazil. Spanish tribunals and auto de fes were set up in Mexico, the Philippine Islands, Guatemala, Peru, New Granada and the Canary Islands. By the late 18th century, most of these were dissolved.”
God’s Indictment of this Religious System
“And in her was found the blood of prophets and saints, and of all who were slain on the earth” (Revelation 18:24).
This rigid religious system will last only for a short space of time, for when Jesus Christ comes back to earth again He will destroy completely the worship of Baalism (Revelation19)!
Christ will then utterly remove this despicable religious system along with the forcible removal of all the other evils, just as He used Elijah and Jehu in type to do in their time (I Kings 18:39-40; Matthew 24:14; II Thessalonians 1:7-10; Revelation 18:1-24).
The Depth and Impact of the Evil
It is as difficult for us to grasp the real depth of the evil in this society today, BOTH SPIRITUALLY AND PHYSICALLY, just as it is for us to understand it during the time of Elijah.
Yet it is before our eyes and ears all the time in the media, movies and on television! And because of it happening all the time, it is very easy to become somewhat desensitized and conditioned to it. We have to struggle against letting this become a part of our lives, in part, or in whole.
Based on what God makes known in Scripture, He will be looking favorably only on those who view these things as did Lot when he dwelt in Sodom: “. . . and DELIVERED righteous Lot, who was oppressed with THE FILTHY CONDUCT [termed by the holy Bible as SODOMY, called ‘GAY’ today - a politically correct word] of the wicked (for that righteous man, dwelling among them, TORMENTED his righteous soul from DAY TO DAY BY SEEING AND HEARING their lawless deeds)” (II Peter 2:5-8; Ezekiel 9:4-6).
Original Prophet –
Chapter Six A Review of the Background and the Escalation of Lawlessness
Chapter Seven Against This Background of Sin God sent to Israel the End-Time Elijah
Chapter Eight The Sacrificial Murder of Babies
Chapter Nine Legal License to Murder the Defenseless
Chapter Ten The Beginning Advances of Technology and the Work
Chapter Eleven The Mastermind of all Evil, Satan the Devil
Chapter Twelve The
First Stages of Famine