I've seen a lot of misconceptions and wanted to give my two cents from my blog. Rather than hash it out again, I thought I'd just paste it here. Events won’t ever contradict scripture. As for the popes, I don’t believe they’re part of the ETP but if they are it would only be to endorse a Muslim Jesus – called Isa. Here’s why. Read these verses: Daniel 9:26-27 KJV “And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” I want to bring to you attention the importance of the second part of verse 26: “…and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary…” Because Titus was the one in charge when the temple was destroyed, many equate this with him being the “prince” and thereby the “people” being Romans. The truth of the matter is the “prince” is the antichrist, not Titus. Therefore, where will the antichrist come from? First, Josephus states that Titus had no desire of destroying neither the city nor the temple. Hearing that the temple was on fire, he ran to the site with his commanders running behind him, and after them legions of Roman soldiers. It almost reads comical! Titus gesturing and yelling for the men to put out the flames, the soldiers completely ignored him and “neither any persuasions nor any threatenings could restrain their violence, but each one’s own passion” Roman soldiers were renowned for their stiff obedience, yet these were blatantly disobedience. Why? Tacitus states that Titus went to Judea and found three legions there, left by Vespasian. “To these he added the 12th from Syria, and some men belonging to the 18th and 3rd, whom he had withdrawn from Alexandria. This force was accompanied by … a strong contingent of Arabs, who hated the Jews…” As you can see, the real soldiers, who were uncontrollable, even to the point of beatings, were Arabs. Every word in the Scriptures is important. In these verses, we see the Holy Spirit use the word “prince” and the historian Tacitus uses the word “Prince”. They do not mean the same person and I believe that is why today, so many pastors and authors use Rome as the seat of power for the antichrist. I remember when the European Union grew to ten nations and everyone started with “this is it, Jesus is coming!” The word “prince” used by the Holy Spirit was referring to the antichrist; Tacitus used it to refer to Titus. Scripture says that “he”, the “prince”, will confirm a covenant for one week. From this, we understand that the antichrist will sign a treaty with Israel for seven years. This is important because in order to understand the prophecies about the antichrist and the end times, you must know from where the antichrist comes from. Scriptures speak of “the Assyrian”: Micah 5:5-6 KJV “And this man shall be the peace, when the Assyrian shall come into our land: and when he shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him seven shepherds, and eight principal men. And they shall waste the land of Assyria with the sword, and the land of Nimrod in the entrances thereof: thus shall he deliver us from the Assyrian, when he cometh into our land, and when he treadeth within our borders.” Isaiah 10:24-25 KJV “Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD of hosts, O my people that dwellest in Zion, be not afraid of the Assyrian: he shall smite thee with a rod, and shall lift up his staff against thee, after the manner of Egypt. For yet a very little while, and the indignation shall cease, and mine anger in their destruction.” The three verses prior in Micah speak of the prophecy of the Messiah’s birth in Bethlehem. As you can see, it is the Messiah Who will fight the Assyrian and lay waste the land of Nimrod also. Since Jesus didn’t do this during His first visit, we know this will occur in the last days. The land of Nimrod was in Babylon, Iraq. The original land of Assyria was from Babylon, to southern Azerbaijan, to eastern Turkey. Today, the indigenous people call this land Kurdistan. When the antichrist comes to power, it may be that the three nations that are overcome by him will become the Gog and Magog of Ezekiel 38 and 39. Isaiah 34 and 63 speaks of how the Messiah will take vengeance on Edom and Bozrah, the ancient capital of Edom. Today, Edom is Jordan. Ezekiel 25 speaks how the Messiah will destroy Ammon and Moab, which are also part of Jordan. Joel 3 speaks how the Messiah will deal with Zidon and Tyre, which is Lebanon today, and the coast of Palestine, which is Gaza today. Balaam, the cursing prophet, spoke on this wise in Numbers 24:14 KJV “…come therefore, and I will advertise thee what this people (the Hebrews) shall do to thy people (The Midianites) in the latter days.” Midian is hard to point out, but it is outside of Egypt so it is my opinion that it’s the extreme western part of Arabia and southern Jordan along the eastern shore of the Sea of Aqaba. Ezekiel 30 shows that Egypt, Libya, and Ethiopia will also be destroyed. These verses in Ezekiel have a dual message – past and yet future. Now if the antichrist and the false prophet were to come from Rome, why would the Messiah devastate all the kingdoms and nations mentioned above, including all those of the dream of Nebuchadnezzar when He returns? In almost every Old Testament book, any nation marked for destruction is currently Islamic. Up until September 11, 2001, Islam was not well known to the West and sadly, most Christians are completely ignorant to their beliefs. This lack of knowledge is a direct result of why pastors 400 years ago, and still today, believed the false prophet is the Pope, and the antichrist is to be a European. A key to understanding if we are indeed in the end times is the unlocking of the book of Daniel when you read it with the eye on Islam. Christians, not patient enough in years past, have been led astray with this Roman false teaching of the end times, a tactic of the devil to deceive and misdirect the followers of Jesus Christ. Now that the West is at war with Islam – though they do not yet know this – the books have been unsealed for us to understand the truth. Revelation 17:1-2 KJV “… the great whore that sitteth upon many waters: With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.” The waters are many people and nations. What nation hasn’t adjusted their convictions for oil? In May 1908, a British investor succeeded in drilling for oil in Iran, and so the great whore was born. Engineers from the United States, commissioned to drill for water, ended up creating Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, because everywhere they drilled, they got oil. Dhahran was born to support the vast number of American employees and they created the American Oil Company (Aramco). The Middle East is not the place just for oil, but gold, precious stones, and the only place to still get natural pearls (Bahrain). Revelation 17:3 KJV “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.” To the Lord God of Israel, everything about Islam is blasphemous. They worship a man (Muhammad), a meteorite in Mecca they call the “Black Stone”, and their god (Allah) is clearly Satan. Muhammad took the Scriptures and turned it inside out to become the Koran. I don’t know how much more blasphemous a religion could be! As to the seven heads, they are seven kingdoms that John prophesied on later in verse ten, and the ten horns are kings: five are fallen, one is, and one is yet to come. The fallen kingdoms that once ruled over Israel are: • Egypt 1 King – 1 Kingdom • Assyria 1 King – 1 Kingdom • Babylon 1 King – 1 Kingdom • Media-Persia 1 King – 1 Kingdom • Greece 4 Kings (Alexander’s four generals) – 4 Kingdoms One is (at the time of John’s writing): • Rome 1 King – 1 Kingdom One is not yet come (at the time of John’s writing): • Islamic Caliphate 1 King – 1 Religious System of varying Kingdoms The ten horns were/are the leaders. When Greece’s leader died (Alexander) his kingdom was divided amongst his four generals so in the Lord’s count, Greece gets a count of four because the empire of Greece did not remain whole. Rome has many “kings” but they were still only one system. Islam, though a non-unified group of nations, they were the kingdom “yet to come”, they came, and now they are not, but their Caliphate will re-emerge. Revelation 17:11 KJV “And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition.” Now I’m going to deviate from the norm concerning Rome. In Daniel’s statue, the bronze belly and thighs are Greece. What people forget is that this “Roman leg” division happened at the “thighs” of Greece, with its division into the East and the West. At the knees, the body splits off into two bones – the tibia and the fibula. I believe the western leg was the political Roman system until the knees. The division into two bones became the Roman Catholic and Greek Orthodox systems. The eastern leg is Islam, and at the knees, divides into Sunni and Shia systems. All these groups “pray” on their knees. The eighth king comes from the seventh kingdom and it is this eighth king that will go into perdition. The sixth kingdom was Rome, so the seventh to rule over Israel was Islam (Ottoman Empire), therefore the eighth kingdom will be the rise of Islam. The Caliphate is the seat of power for all Islam, a ruler who is like a president, a general, and a spiritual leader. The position is inclusive. The first Caliphate was Muhammad in Medina, Arabia around 630 AD. After his death, there were successive Caliphates, but in the end, Islam split into the Shi’a and Sunni belief systems that still thrive today. The Caliphate ended in March 1924 with the creation of the secular Turkish government after the abolishment of the Ottoman Empire. Hence, the feet of clay – so mixed and weakened without purity of beliefs. In fact, in Hebrew, “arab” means “mixed people”. Someday soon, the Turkish people will elect a Sharia government, which will reinstate the Caliphate. In an excellent article in the Hudson New York, Steven Simpson writes in his article Turkey: Islamism’s Consequences for the West, “For now, Turkey, still a powerful member of NATO, and still presumably a friend of America, teeters between East and West. A ‘neo-Ottoman’ Empire — like a ‘neo-Czarist’ Russia that appears in the making — is something that America, the West, and Israel, should take seriously. “In the Middle East, the past is never forgotten and never forgiven. The future in the Middle East often consists of the merging of the present with the past. The West might therefore be well advised to prepare for the day that a once pro-Western secular Turkey no longer exists. The once ‘sick man of Europe’ of the 18th and 19th centuries has now become the 21st century ‘strongman of the Middle East.’ While the secularist Kemalist ship is sinking in the Straits of the Bosporus, the neo-Ottoman Islamist ship of Erdogan is docking at the port of Istanbul.” Revelation 17:12-13 KJV “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.” Now if there’s anything I learned about Scripture, it’s that many verses have a double meaning and these ten kings are not just from the statue of Daniel, but are future kings which will surrender everything to the antichrist. These kings will destroy the whore and make her desolate. Verse 18 states that this is a great city – Babylon, Iraq. It will be rebuilt. So why would these Islamic nations destroy Babylon and the Islamic system and the oil? Daniel 11:36-38 KJV “And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done. Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all. But in his estate shall he honour the God of forces: and a god whom his fathers knew not shall he honour with gold, and silver, and with precious stones, and pleasant things.” As you can see, the antichrist will rise to power and then do what he wants – especially when he’s fooled the world by his power. “And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast…” (Rev 13:14a) Notice in the verses of Daniel above, the antichrist will neither regard the God of his fathers – Abraham via Ishmael – nor regard the desire of women (won’t listen to their pleas because in Islam, women are second-class people). Who else in the entire world today beheads (Rev 20:4 KJV) their enemies? Islam! The antichrist (Satan possessed) will declare that he is God, yet he will honor the god of forces – violence, military, and terrorism. Babylon may or may not be rebuilt to the opulence it once had, but from Daniel’s statue, the starting place of Islam’s history to its very end of history, when destroyed, will come full circle. With the birth and growth of Islam, and their pure unifying hatred of Israel, these ten kings and the antichrist, in war with the West, destroy the lifeblood of the West’s economy – oil. A great military strategy. Nevertheless, their end is destruction: Daniel 2:34-35 KJV “Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.” Daniel 2:45 KJV “Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.” Jesus Christ comes from heaven to earth (the Stone) to destroy those who have attacked His own. Notice that the statue: the iron, clay, brass, silver and gold are broken “together”. Not only will the world marvel at the head that was wounded and brought back (the Caliphate) but the enemies throughout all of history of Israel in one new kingdom, the antichrist’s kingdom. Who is it that is destroyed? Throughout Scripture, they are all today Islamic countries. His garments will be dyed in blood of His enemies (Isaiah 63)! Jesus Christ comes to set up His one thousand-year reign! Glory to God! What a time that will be!