It is easy enough to see an Antichrist Roman Emperor in Pseudo-Christian rulers like Constantine who reshaped our Judeo-Christian heritage. We also need to recognize Antichrist Roman Emperor in the monotheistic Muslim rulers who recognize but overrule the authority of the Bible.
Islam’s jihad, or holy war is all about becoming the god of this world’s overlord of the Fourth Kingdom.
This is easy to see when we overlaying a map of the classical Roman Empire with the same territory during the Middle Ages. From the 600s onward, the “Eastern”, i.e. Islamic, Roman Empire stretched from the Black Sea to the Atlantic and waxed and waned from its home base of Asia Minor, Greece and Eastern Europe over Germany, France, Italy and Spain
According to Daniel chapter 2 and Daniel 7:19-20, key identifiers of the fourth kingdom are that it
- joins West with East,
- is diverse from all kingdoms, polishing its autocratic rule by a veneer of Republican power-sharing bodies like senates and parliaments.
- devours the whole earth – controls a great amount of the world
- treads down and break it in pieces – whatever it can’t incorporate, it crushes and tears apart as a threat to its authoritarianism.
- Last, but by no means least, imposes a new religious orthodoxy. There is no denying this fact, yet it seems to have escaped the attention of many ostensibly Bible-believing fundamentalist Christians.
- 45 BC Julius Caesar becomes first emperor of Roman Empire, accepts all pagan religions, monotheistic Jews granted privilege of exemption from emperor worship.
- 395 Emperor Theodosius establishes a paganized New Testament Christianity as Rome’s state religion, including transforming Jesus Christ’s identity into the pagan sun god and saints as the lesser gods. This exclude all Old Testament Jewish elements. Jews are reviled and persecuted as well as Gentile believers who maintain Jewish elements of faith and practice.
- 610 Muhammed leads his pagan Arab people to return to the original faith of the prophets, such as Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, Solomon and Jesus with submission (Islam) to the will of God. This religious faith spreads like wildfire through the next centuries, taking over the Roman Eastern and African territories.
- 636 AD – Islam’s era-marking Battle of Yarmouk. Islam’s first battles were against the Roman occupied Byzantine states of Syria, Palestine, and Lebanon.
- 637 AD Battle of Qadasiya first milestone in conquering Iraq over the next dozen years. Within a few years the Muslims had also conquered parts of Egypt to the South and Asia Minor and Armenia to the North.
- In the 1500’s AD Babylon, Persia and the Levant were absorbed into the Turkish Ottoman Empire based in Asia Minor.
In 638 ce, Sophronius, the Patriarch of Jerusalem, peacefully surrendered the city and the welfare of the Christian community to the Second Caliph Omar bin Al- Khattab in person. In an age when conquest was often characterised by intolerance and violence towards a conquered community, the terms of surrender of Jerusalem, which is known as the Pact of Omar, were generous and humane:
In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
This is what the servant of God, Omar bin Al-Khattab, the Commander of the Faithful, has offered the people of Jerusalem: their security, granting them protection for their selves, their money, their churches, their children, their lowly and their innocent, and the remainder of their people. Their churches are not to be taken, nor are they to be destroyed, nor are they to be degraded or belittled, neither are their crosses or their money, and they are not to be forced to change their religion, nor is any one of them to be harmed.
We can’t miss that he is presenting himself as their Savior.
Omar also ordered that the Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif be built on the very place where the Prophet Muhammad had made the Night Journey (Al-Isra’ wal-Mi’raj)…
The Hashemites, or “Bani Hashem” are descendants of…the Prophet Ismail…the son of the Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham)….“Hashem”…was the great-grandfather of the Prophet Muhammad. The Hashemites are thus the direct descendants of the Prophet through his daughter Fatima and her husband Ali bin Abi Talib, who was also the Prophet’s paternal first cousin and the fourth caliph of Islam…
[W]hen the Islamic Prophet Muhammad died…a debate emerged about who should be his successor…one group (which eventually became the Shiites) felt Muhammad’s successor should be someone in his bloodline, while the other (which became the Sunnis) felt a pious individual who would follow the Prophet’s customs was acceptable.
“The original schism between Islam’s two largest sects was not over religious doctrine. It was over political leadership…”
Just like Christians and Jews.
The great majority — upwards of 85 to 90 percent — of the world’s more than 1.6 billion Muslims are Sunnis…from West Africa to Indonesia…
the Shiites are…in Iran, predominance in Iraq and sizable populations in Syria, Lebanon and Yemen.
A shallow, religion-oriented analysis…dominates…Western thinking about most issues in the Middle East…New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman asserts that the “main issue in the Middle East is the 7th century struggle over who is the rightful heir to the Prophet Muhammad – Shiites or Sunnis…”
Therefore rule from Islam’s holy city Jerusalem.
[E]ight major Crusades occurred between 1096 and 1291 for land in the Middle East.
In 1099 ce, Muslim Jerusalem fell to the European forces of the First Crusade. The devastation caused by the Crusaders is well documented. Meron Benvenisti writes that the Crusaders, drunk with victory, conducted a massacre in the city, such as has seldom been paralleled in the history of war. The troops ran amok through the streets of the city, stabbing everyone they encountered4 (Muslim, Jew and Orthodox Christian alike). The few thousand people remaining from a population which had numbered 40,000 were assembled near the gates and sold into slavery. The Crusaders controlled the city from 1099 to 1187 ce, proclaiming their Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem.
In 1187 ce, Salah Al-Din Al-Ayyubi—known in the West as ‘Saladin’—recovered Jerusalem. In contrast to the Crusaders’ slaughter when they conquered Jerusalem, he granted amnesty and free passage to all common Catholics and to the defeated Christian army, as long as they were able to pay a paltry ransom for themselves. Salah Al-Din allowed the native Christians to remain and alowed Jews expelled from Jerusalem by the Crusaders to resettle in the city. Salah Al-Din also restored the rights of pilgrimage to several eastern Christian denominations whom the Crusaders considered heretics.
The peaceful transition of power to the Ottomans [in 1516] was welcomed by Jerusalem’s dwellers…[Under the Savior] Suleiman the Magnificent…Jew, Christian and Muslim enjoyed freedom of religion and it was possible to find a synagogue, a church and a mosque on the same street.
In 1700, Judah HeHasid led the largest organized group of Jewish immigrants to the Land of Israel in centuries…
Several changes with long-lasting effects on the city occurred in the mid-19th century: their implications can be felt today and lie at the root of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict over Jerusalem. The first of these was a trickle of Jewish immigrants from the Middle East and Eastern Europe. The first such immigrants were Orthodox Jews… others were students, who came with their families to await the coming of the Messiah, adding new life to the local population. At the same time, European colonial powers began seeking toeholds in the city, hoping to expand their influence pending the imminent collapse of the Ottoman Empire. This was also an age of Christian religious revival, and many churches sent missionaries to proselytize among the Muslim and especially the Jewish populations, believing that this would speed the Second Coming of Christ…
The Ottoman Empire was an absolute monarchy during much of its existence. By the second half of the fifteenth century, the sultan sat at the apex of a hierarchical system and acted in political, military, judicial, social, and religious capacities under a variety of titles. He was theoretically responsible onlyto God and God’s law (the Islamic شریعت şeriat, known in Arabic as شريعة sharia), of which he was the chief executor. His heavenly mandate was reflected in Islamic titles such as “shadow of God on Earth”.
The Islamic ruler was absolutely the equivalent of the Christian ruler.
Beginning in 1902 Abdulaziz Ibn Saud had been fighting his way up the political ladder the old fashioned way, uniting regions of Arabia into a single state with his Ikhwan (Arabic for brothers), an Islamic religious militia. Made up of rough-living Bedouins dedicated to the purification and the unification of Islam, cosmopolitan Ottoman society was uprooted, and Wahhabi culture was imposed as compulsory social order. He was so successful in seizing control of much of the Arabian Peninsula that he was able to make a politically advantageous arrangement with the Ottoman Empire during WWI.
A rival chieftain, Hussein bin Ali, the sharif of Mecca and ruler of the state of Hejaz, used the opportunity to outbid Abdulaziz for regional power by making an alliance with the British. He recruited and led an Arab revolt against the Ottoman Empire on the promise of being rewarded a kingdom stretching from Syria to Yemen on successful conclusion of WWI.
Hussein could deliver manpower, but who could deliver oil?
Shortly after WWI Abdulaziz Ibn Saud met with a mining engineer who was convinced that much oil would be found throughout his territory. Just as they would do in the next decade while debating an alliance with Germany, the autocratic British monarchy practiced appeasement while Abdulaziz invaded and incorporated Hussein’s Hejaz. The British recognized Abdul-Aziz’s independent realm with agreed-upon boundaries.
When Abdulaziz’ powerful Ikhwan pressed him to continue their jihad into British-held Arab territory he established his political boundaries by massacring the troops who raised him to power. In return, the British granted Abdulaziz Ibn Saud a kingdom within their Empire, thereby providing assurances of protection by the British.
Contrary to the declared aims of establishing self-determination of the peoples freed from the Ottoman Empire’s control, Saudi Arabia was not set up as a democracy. Named after the ruling / owning family, Saudi Arabia possesses and controls Mecca and Medina, the two holiest places in Islam, rendering the kingdom the highest religious status in the Moslem world.
After decades of Western friendships and decadence, the corrupt Saudi regime needed to shore up respectability and acceptance by the people, so in 1962 the it established the Muslim World League to promote the spread of Islam. However, Islamic religious leaders are demanding much more – greater and more comprehensive implementation of Sharīʿah in Saudi society and breaking the monarchy’s ties with the West.
At this same time Prime Minister Qasim invited Mustafa Barzani to return to Iraq in return for his political support. When the politician reneged on his promise to grant freedom to his nation (haven’t we heard that before), Barzani began what became known as the “First” Kurdish Iraqi War lasting from 1961 until 1970. Throughout the 1960s, the uprising escalated into a long war during which 80% of the Iraqi army was engaged in combat with the Kurds.
In 1953, the Iranian coup d’état, engineered by the United States and the Western Bloc, set up Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi to rule in favor of Western interests against the Iraqi peoples’, leading to the arrest and exile of opposition leader Ayatollah Khomeini in 1964. By 1978, strikes and demonstrations paralyzed the country, and the Ayatollah returned to establish an Islamic state.
Not to fear. Any potential trouble-making against the West was certainly prevented by The 33 Strategies of War.
- Make enemies work for you or infiltrate them. Bloodless wins are the quintessence of strategy
As well as this one in the Taking Offensive section: “find moral justifications for amoral behaviors.”
The Iraq War from 2003 to 2011 began with the invasion of Iraq by the United States–led Western coalition under false pretenses.
- The Bush administration claimed that Iraq had a weapons of mass destruction (WMD) program, and that Iraq posed a threat to the United States and its allies. No stockpiles of WMDs or an active WMD program were ever found.
- Some US officials falsely accused Saddam of harbouring and supporting the terrorist group al-Qaeda which was blamed for 9/11. In 2004, the 9/11 Commission said there was no evidence of an operational relationship between the Saddam Hussein regime and al-Qaeda.
- The rationale for war faced heavy criticism both domestically and internationally.
- Kofi Annan of the United Nations called the invasion illegal, under international law it violated the UN Charter.
- The Chilcot Report, a British inquiry into its decision to go to war published in 2016 concluded that peaceful alternatives to war had not been exhausted,
- that the United Kingdom and the United States had undermined the authority of the United Nations Security Council,
- that the process of identifying the legal basis was “far from satisfactory”,
- and that the war was unnecessary.
Iraq held multi-party elections in 2005…The al-Maliki government enacted policies that alienated the country’s previously dominant Sunni minority and worsened sectarian tensions, changing the invasion to an occupation.
The Iraq War caused
- at least 100,000 civilian deaths,
- as well as 10’s of 1,000’s of military deaths, the majority of which occurred as a result of the insurgency and civil conflicts in 3 years between 2004 and 2007.
- Subsequently, the War in Iraq of 2013 to 2017, which is considered a domino effect of the invasion and occupation, caused at least 155,000 deaths,
- in addition to the displacement more than 3.3 million people within the country.
I supported the Iraq War in 2003 because I believed the Bush administration’s case that Iraq was again actively seeking to acquire nuclear weapons…
Yet the goal in 2003 was bigger than denuclearization. Iraq’s Saddam Hussein was both oppressing his own subjects and menacing his neighbors. By replacing Saddam’s regime with a more humane and peaceful successor, the U.S. could set the Arab Middle East on a path to a better future—contributing to America’s own security after 9/11.
Inside the Bush administration, we thought we were ready to remake Iraq for the better—but we were not. We were ignorant, arrogant, and unprepared, and we unleashed human suffering that did no good for anyone: not for Americans, not for Iraqis, not for the region. Almost two decades later, the damage to America’s standing in the world from the Iraq War has still not been repaired, let alone that war’s economic and human costs to the United States and the Middle East.
In 2011, coincident with America’s exit from Iraq, The Arab Spring erupted as a series of pro-democracy uprisings enveloping several largely Muslim countries, including Tunisia, Morocco, Syria, Libya, Egypt and Bahrain… The political and social impact of these popular uprisings remains significant today, years after many of them ended. Many of these protests tore down regimes, leading to instability that ended with violent civil wars.
The opportunity to seize power is tantalizing for many players who rush to join sides faster than my 5th grade baseball team at recess.
“And the ten horns…are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet [in 100 AD]; but receive power as kings one hour [a short time] with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. These shall make war with the Lamb.” (Revelation 17:12-14)
If we draw our conclusions from a hermeneutical process, these would be the 10 kings in the fourth kingdom that is destroyed at the end time.
The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces. And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise.” (Daniel 7:23-24)
These are often linked with some European agency, like the EEC. But Daniel also informs us that all four empires over the four historical Empires remain in play throughout the end times.
“And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed:” (Daniel 2)
This occurs through the “devouring’ of the existing empire by each successive empire. Herod was just one example of a king over a Roman territory, still subject to the Roman Emperor.
Moreover, the last kingdom is split into two legs. “A kingdom divided against itself cannot stand” and that may well be its undoing. The ten kings are not all on the same side.
In order to make sense of the “last days” events, we need to update the ancient kingdoms by their current names in the same geo-graphical location, as well as the leaders of these nations and their relations with each other.
Organizing these entities from East to West rather than chronologically, and in two competing alliances of the king of the south / mainly eastern nations and the king of the north / mainly western nations.
- Pakistan, officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan
- It is the world’s fifth-most populous country, and has the world’s second-largest Muslim population. The region that comprises the modern state of Pakistan was the realm of the Persian Achaemenid; briefly that of Alexander the Great; the Seleucid,and most recently, the British Indian Empire from 1858 to 1947. Pakistan gained independence in 1947 after the Partition of the British Indian Empire, which awarded separate statehood to its Muslim-majority regions and was accompanied by an unparalleled mass migration and loss of life. Pakistan has the world’s sixth-largest standing armed forces. It is a declared nuclear-weapons state, and is designated as a major non-NATO ally by the United States.
- Over the country’s 75 years of independence, its democratic leaders have been repeatedly deposed in military coups, presidential dismissals, and disqualifications from holding public office. Shehbaz Sharif called for “unity” and vowed to repair the country’s damaged economy after he was sworn in as Prime Minister April 2022 following the ouster of Imran Khan over allegations of poor governance and economic mismanagement.
- was an Islamic republic from 1990 to 1996, and from 2001 to 2021. From 1996 to the re-establishment of the Islamic republic in 2001, Afghanistan was ruled by the Taliban, a militant group who governed Afghanistan as an Islamic theocracy officially known as the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. In 2021, the Taliban initiated a month-long insurgency to effectively end the Islamic republic. The Taliban took many by surprise as they swept across Afghanistan in just 10 days in August 2021,
- Hibatullah Akhundzada became the supreme commander of the Taliban in May 2016, and is now leader of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. The Taliban banned television, music, movies, make-up, and stopped girls aged 10 and over from attending school.
- Tsar / President of Russia & Religious Leader of the Eastern European / Byzantine segment of the Christian Roman Empire
- Saudi Arabia – only Arab country on the American side
- Israel – betrayed by America
- American President of Western Catholic & its Protest-ants segment of the Christian Roman Empire
That does leave America hanging in the wind, does it not?