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Are we in the Time of Sorrows?

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  • Originally posted by seanD View Post
    As US pledges to assist their al-qaeda "linked" buddies in Syria with air cover, Russia sends actual boots on the ground in Syria...
    It's silly to suggest that this is the first generation or last generation that can be described as being the one and only "time of sorrows".

    From Histories by the Roman historianTacitus:
    The history on which I am entering is that of a period rich in disasters, terrible in battles, torn by civil wars, more foreign wars and often both at the same time. There was success in the East, misfortune in the West. Illyricum was disturbed, the Gallic provinces were wavering, Britain subdued and immediately let go. The Sarmarae and Suebi rose against us; the Dacians won fame for defeats inflicted and suffered; even the Parchians were almost roused to arms through the trickery of a pretended Nero. Moreover Italy was distressed by disasters unknown before or returning after the lapse of ages. Cities of the rich fertile shores of Campania were swelled up or overwhelmed. Rome was devastated by conflagrations, in which her most ancient shrines were consumed and the very Capital fired by citizens' hands. Sacred rites were defiled; there were adulteries in high places. The sea was filled with exiles, its cliffs were made foul with the bodies of the dead. In Rome there was awful cruelty.

    Besides the manifold misfortunes that befell mankind, there were prodigies in the sky and on the earth, warnings given by thunderbolts, and prophecies of the future, both joyful and gloomy, uncertain and clear. For never was it more fully proved by awful disasters of the Roman people or by indubitable signs that gods care not for our safety, but for our punishment.

    How about two world wars during the 20th century; and more than 100,000,000 people killed by communist governments in Russia, China, and Indochina, as well as 6,000,000 Jews murdered by the Nazis in Europe ― not to mention the sufferings of countless more men, women, and children who endured imprisonment, torture, and homelessness during those times but ultimately survived.

    Back to the time of Tacitus' Histories in the 1st century, in which the Jewish nation, its capital Jerusalem, and its very religion were completely devastated ― never to recover in the case of the latter, being temple-centric as it was: read Josephus' The Jewish War for an account of a time of sorrow as great as, or even greater than, any time or place in history, with mothers reduced to eating their own children during the Roman siege, among the many utter horrors of that time.
    Last edited by John Reece; 09-06-2015, 05:01 PM.


    • Since I've already addressed this question multiple times in this thread and others (here and here and here for example), I'll address it one more time as extensively as I can, so that if this issue is brought up in the future, I'll just refer to this post.

      The first thing that needs to be established is whether futurism is correct or not. I believe it is (and I'm open to double fulfillment, especially with the OD), but since the argument on whether it is or not is too extensive and off topic for this thread (and a debate that is virtually pointless since both sides are set in their beliefs), I'll assume for the sake of my following points in this post that futurism is true.

      The next issue as a futurist I have to figure out is why the Lord gave us signs that have been fulfilled in almost every generation in the 2,000 year time span the signs were given. Why would the Lord not be aware that every generation that sees these signs would think they were in the Beginning of Sorrows when they apparently weren't? Since I don't have the direct answer for this until I can ask the Lord when I see him again, and since there's no possible way a future generation would know if the signs were worse than the previous generations unless that generation lived through those signs firsthand and could compare the signs with their generation, there must be something unique about each successive generation that stands out from previous generations. I break this down into two explanations, one weaker than the other.

      Explanation #1:

      The weaker explanation is that I know the signs will be worse in this generation than the previous generations because each generation is in an advanced stage of technology that makes the ill effects much worse, and this is especially true in the 21st century where technology has rapidly increased exponentially.

      One example is that this generation is a whole lot dumber, spoiled and far less self-sufficient than previous generations (particularly in the more developed countries) because it's heavily reliant on technology for its survival. This generation is far less apt at living off the land, growing its own food, getting by with the bare minimum necessities required to survive that it takes for granted. This would make the effects far worse in an environment that lost these technological luxuries due to any number of potential possibilities. When the central banks around the world, for example, lose control (all of them desperately trying to keep their economies and markets afloat as we speak), and the global economies finally collapse like a chain reaction (clear signs all over the globe we're beginning to see now), the social, political and geopolitical effects will be much worse than previous generations for reasons I just pointed out.

      Another example is the effects of war. We're in a generation that if another world war broke out (a firm possibility based on what I've been reporting), it would be far more devastating because we have much more devastating weaponry. We have nukes, we have cyber threats, we have EMP weapons, and we have biological weapons, with delivery systems that greatly magnify these attacks. Imagine what would happen if US nuked Japan today. Obviously, Japan would retaliate, including its allies, thus there would be an exchange exponentially greater than what we saw in the 40s. This might even start a chain reaction with multiple countries.

      Explanation #2:

      What I believe is the stronger explanation is that this generation is able to perceive and (in some ways) even experience the sorrow in the world in a cumulative way that no other prior generation could, via our communication technology. Sure, previous generations knew there were earthquakes, social and political conflicts, wars, famines, disease on a local level, but not on a global level which required much more time for these reports to spread and be known.

      In stark contrast, this generation sees all these things happening almost immediately on a worldwide scale. We know every war and rumor of war, every earthquake, every famine, every disease outbreak, every riot and civil conflict that's going on around world seconds after it happens, oftentimes in real-time. Just that alone supports the claim that the signs are far more intensified and more cumulative in our generation than any other generation. Even the generation in the last 100 years was incapable of experiencing what we experience today, much less the generation of the ancient world.


      • While Russia has taken the initiative to actually fight ISIS in Syria, US (obviously butthurt by this action) just may attack Russia with the excuse that Russia is attacking the "moderate" anti-Assad al-qaeda forces

        Though it can be amusing at how absurdly deep into this bizarre rabbit hole we've gone (and yet no one seems to have any interest in this matter -- maybe because this is really really making US look bad), WW3 seems to be getting closer and closer on the horizon. There are so many scenarios between US, Russia and China that can lead to this, it's difficult to keep track. It's no longer an "if" but a matter of choosing which will come first... the full global economic meltdown or a world war.


        • I thought I'd move away from wars and rumors of wars for the moment, which is getting so blatantly obvious that it's ridiculous -- with both US and China trolling each other over the South Sea, the Syrian crisis growing to insane proportions with potential Russian and US confrontation, and the Ukraine ceasefire deadline approaching -- and focus on the "mark of the Beast" and how it relates to this thread, or how it's rapidly coming into view.

          First of all, the notion futurist Christians should probably move away from is that the mark of the Beast will be something that appears suddenly and that looks evil and scary on the surface. In other words, I think it's erroneous to think this system will be forced onto the masses against their will by an evil mastermind because they perceive it as something entirely new and obviously threatening and evil in appearance. I believe it could be much more subtle and non-threatening (such as the gradual acclimation of digital cash outlets we've seen over the decades), will appear to be the solution to many societal problems and incorporate very practical uses, making it difficult to see it as "the mark."

          To futurists that interpret Rev 13:16-17 in a literal sense, this is ONLY possible with our modern technology. There's no possible way to literally prevent a whole populace from buying and selling in even a country alone, much less the world, unless one of two factors are considered: all means of commerce is exclusively digital or a digital code is required for each monetary transaction, whether with cash or other means. Obviously the latter would not be as effective ceasing illegal transactions all together than the former, but the former is less implausible to imagine on a global level than the latter.

          However, it should be noted here that a total cashless society restricted to a single country is not that difficult to imagine, and there's absolutely no dispute about the fact we're heading in this direction. Here are a few MSM sources about it that make this undeniable…

          Even though digital currency is also becoming prevalent in non-developed countries, a full cashless system implemented on a global level is a whole lot more complicated, thus less plausible to imagine from where the current global economic system stands today. But a required digital code for each individual necessary for monetary transactions in each country, such as a global digital social security number, could at least make buying and selling illegal without it, thus effectively burdensome to do so especially if it was under the guise of stopping criminal and terrorist activity.

          The UN is indeed pushing very persistently for global governance among developed countries, including global citizen registration, among other things, which they foresee being implemented a little more than a decade from now…

          16.8 Broaden and strengthen the participation of developing countries in the institutions of global governance
          16.9 By 2030, provide legal identity for all, including birth registration

          When you read the UN's goals, who could honestly object to such a humanitarian cause? The UN's goals are also, ironically enough, being pushed hard by none other than The World Bank. Global registration would obviously require a global digital database, something that's pretty much unprecedented even though we know the technology exists. Once developed countries are on board with such a system, it stands to reason that underdeveloped countries will soon follow, especially if the economic viability looks promising, and most definitely if the current economic instability of the old system gets even worse (which I believe will be one of the major driving issues of this global unification).

          In any event, I've been looking closely at not just digital currency, but also the push for biometric ID. Though biometric ID is not as directly and enthusiastically endorsed in the MSM, the evolution of technology leading us in this direction is pretty much as certain as digital currency. Here's a source on the subject of biometric ID and what it entails...

          I also see it as a necessity for the UN's "universal ID" goal. In other words, you need a way to ensure the accuracy of such a mass registration overhaul and a way to protect all this data. Indeed, the UN actually plans to implement this technology in regards to the refugee crisis.

          To summarize, in the context of Rev 13:16-17, we have three topics here that are becoming a fast reality and are either being directly proposed on a global level or at least could surely converge on a global level at some eventual point: a) global ID system; b) biometric ID system; c) total digital currency system.

          We know that biometric technology itself is already being implemented locally and here are some examples...

          Thus we can assume some form of national biometric ID will eventually become mandatory like selective service registration, social security numbers and state IDs. Since we also know a total cashless society is becoming a clear reality, it stands to reason that at some point biometric ID will become an essential integration in order to protect such a vulnerable means of digital currency transfer. In other words, as digital currency becomes the norm, means to secure this will become even more of a necessity, and since both digital currency and biometric ID is already a reality on some level… I'll let you do the math.

          Though a total global cashless system still seems implausible from where we stand now, things could get so horrific and in disarray in the current world order that the surviving masses accept anything that brings back a semblance of civilization once again by those with the means to do it regardless of what is offered as an economic solution. however, even if the fiat currency system in place now is not totally eliminated from the picture, in light of the goals of global governmental bodies, it's very easy to see a scenario even in our current situation now where people are required to be registered with a global biometric ID and thus cannot make monetary transactions in their respective countries, at least legally, without this ID; an ID that could be scanned in a second before any and all transactions are made. Though we would expect a bit of inevitable resistance to this, such a system would be adhered to by the majority of the masses because none adherence will be looked upon as aberrant, irrational paranoia, suspicious, a sign of possible criminal or terrorist activity.

          Not only is global registration being pushed hard by governmental bodies, but the whole "global unification" mantra is being pushed hard by the pop culture celebrity arena (see here and here), and, of course, by the current Pope. We can very easily imagine that this ideal will become such a norm that it will undoubtedly be endorsed as modern technological progression and those who oppose it will be vilified as anti-science kooks, intellectual simpletons and religious extremists against human progress.

          Whether this "global governance" being pushed by global bodies such as the UN and The World Bank is a direct manifestation of the Beast global system (I know many futurists currently believe this, but I'm still not entirely sure) or just more layers of technological and political advancement pushing us in that direction is difficult for me to say. My opinion is that we may have a whole lot of economic chaos, civil strife, war, devastation and horror on the horizon before there is complete transition into this global technological phase. Nonetheless, what we know for sure is that the technology is clearly in place, the political eagerness to implement it is in place, the consciousness of the masses in relation to the process is in place.

          The main point of this post is that even though we see the clear signs of a global government taking shape in the consciousness of the masses, which we could easily assume will integrate other factors on a global level such as technology and monetary policy, I believe the subject won't be as easy as pointing a finger and saying this guy's the "antichrist" and this is his mark, especially as we look at things now in its premature stages. Where things currently stand now, not only do I believe it will be difficult for us Christians to directly identify the mark of the Beast, being that it is so gradual, but because it is a subject that is complex and includes many separate topics that have yet to converge, and the way "the mark" is implemented I believe will make it extremely difficult to see the evil nature of it and impossible to oppose without societal consequences for doing so underneath the veil of numerous benefits for humanity it will claim to incorporate.


          • An interesting poll was taken, which showed a rather rapid shift of perception is taking place in western culture... that the majority of millennials preferred socialism over capitalism...

            As Santayana said, those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it. Less than two decades after socialism seemed to have been confined to the dust-heap of history, another generation may have to learn hard lessons.

            The survey, taken at the end of January, found that 43 percent of Americans under 30 had a favorable view of socialism. Less than a third of millennials had a favorable view of capitalism. No other age or ethnic demographic preferred socialism over capitalism.

            This survey is pretty significant in that America has always served as a beacon or the western "poster child" of a successful capitalist system (at least the theoretical perception of capitalism) to the rest of the world, more than any other country in the world. Obviously, this sentiment is rapidly changing. This also fits in rather nicely to my previous post about a growing reception of a global citizenry system in order to control poverty.

            In short, what we have here are two ideas rapidly forming on a collective level and that we can assume, within an eschatological context, will converge at some point as rapidly as they're forming -- positive embrace of socialism and a collective positive view of a global government.

            Is it just a coincidence that these two ideas are rapidly shaping within the minds of the collective?

            In light of what's happening in the world right now, everything taking shape and what I've been reporting in this thread; it would make for a pretty extraordinary coincidence. Now imagine what will happen or how much rapidly this sentiment will shape in the minds of the collective if (when) there is a global economic collapse, followed by wars and civil strife (all of which we're seeing take shape now). Imagine what type of sentiment will form from the chaos and horrors the world will experience, or at least witness (thanks to our modern media technology), which will undoubtedly and erroneously be blamed on capitalism and greed (because that's clearly the perception in the minds of those that now embrace socialism).

            How is this poll relevant to the thread? Obviously, you can't have a socialist system without some authoritative body having more control over the collective populace. Now I'm not saying the Beast system is necessarily a "socialist" system or how we define socialism because the scriptures aren't clear about that.

            The important takeaway from the poll is how evident it is that there is a shift of views from free independent markets to a more controlled economic system of commerce. Whether the Beast system is socialist or not, it's clearly a system controlled by a higher power (whether this is secular or supernatural is not clear) because you can't require people to take a mark in order to engage in commerce without the control of an authoritative power -- much like socialism -- which we can assume is some sort of governing authority.

            Though I covered this in the last post, this is further proof that such a system will probably not be received by that much resistance, or at least the type of resistance I once thought. The Beast system won't be perceived as an evil totalitarian system enforcing its authority on the people against their will, but a system that is a necessity for human survival and progress; a system that won't be viewed as something intrusive because a vast amount of people are already receptive towards at least the idea. The resistance will come from the minority, not the majority.


            • Wars and rumors of wars is increasing to insane levels with scattered regional wars and war rhetoric between multiple nations raising the potential conflict between both global superpower and sub-power nations (all of which are ratcheting up their military arsenals at the same time).

              But with wars and rumors of wars all over the world aside, 2015 was the year of global civil crisis, a trend of outright bizarreness and what a Christian can only see as spiritual degradation.

              The Baltimore riot...


              The Paris attack...

              Disgruntled gunman shoots anchor on live TV...

              Teenage kid goes on mass shooting spree of churchgoers...


              Couple goes on mass shooting spree in San Bernardino...


              Other mass shootings in the US in 20015...


              Woman kills her child and waves his severed head in public...

              Woman finds a cooked horse head while strolling through a park...


              ... and I expect it to get much much worse.
              Last edited by seanD; 02-29-2016, 02:24 PM.


              • Just more cumulative data to add to everything else happening in the world...

                NEXT month, the Temple of Baal will come to Times Square. Reproductions of the 50-foot arch that formed the temple’s entrance are to be installed in New York and in London, a tribute to the 2,000-year-old structure that the Islamic State destroyed last year in the Syrian town of Palmyra. The group’s rampage through Palmyra, a city that reached its peak in the second and third century A.D., enraged the world, spurring scholars and conservationists into action. Numerous nongovernmental organizations are now cataloging and mapping damaged cultural heritage sites in the region.


                Now, naturally, us moderns don't view this as having any religious significance, and I'm obviously not arguing that the folks behind this project are consciously doing this for religious reasons (of course, I'm assuming this since I can't read their minds), but let's keep this real.

                Baal has immense historical and religious significance in the bible; at certain times in the Levant actually considered an equal revival to Yahweh, a fierce enemy to Yahweh and the people of Israel, and thus the symbolism in any of its form is obviously a direct affront to God regardless of the intentions behind the project. Studying the actual site for archaeological purposes is one thing, but erecting a replica of it in major cities around the world to admire and "restore dignity" is a whole different matter.

                Something also interesting to note in the NYT article is this...

                Bulldozed by the Islamic State in 2015, the 1,500-year-old monastery of St. Elian, near Al Qaryatain, Syria, was a symbol of these connections. It was a modest and unadorned structure that had none of the glamour of the Temple of Baal; a 3D reconstruction of the rather plain sarcophagus that held the remains of its eponymous saint won’t be coming to a major Western city any time soon. But its importance lay in its role as a bridge between communities.
                Another ancient religious structure destroyed by the same Islamic group or the same reasons and that should have equal archeological value is being disregarded because it "had none of the glamour of the Temple of Baal."

                What does this mean in the context eschatology? They're essentially erecting religious symbolism of the Mesopotamian religions, including Babylon and Assyria, in our modern times in two major western cities of the world for the sole purpose of admiration.

                But it doesn't just end there. The same organization plans to "construct approximately 1,000 such versions of the arch in cities throughout the world."


                • Originally posted by Christianbookworm View Post
                  Uhhh... just because the presidents haven't been of good quality doesn't make them freaking antichrists! Seriously, they're human like the rest of us. Unless you can show either of those men as having docetist tendencies...
                  I suppose it makes a difference from ID'ing the AC with the Pope - or the Pope with the AC. Since a lot of putative ACs have not been noted for denying the reality of the Incarnation, they fail St John's test of recognition as the AC.

                  I want to see whether a woman POTUS is identified as the AC... Queen Victoria could be the AC - her reign began in 1837. 18x37 = 666. 2016 is one of the years identified as the close of the 1260 "prophetic years" in Revelation. We have almost 4 months to go.


                  • Originally posted by Rushing Jaws View Post
                    I suppose it makes a difference from ID'ing the AC with the Pope - or the Pope with the AC. Since a lot of putative ACs have not been noted for denying the reality of the Incarnation, they fail St John's test of recognition as the AC.

                    I want to see whether a woman POTUS is identified as the AC... Queen Victoria could be the AC - her reign began in 1837. 18x37 = 666. 2016 is one of the years identified as the close of the 1260 "prophetic years" in Revelation. We have almost 4 months to go.
                    Well, since some futurists believe that Dan 11:36 represents the "antichrist," I doubt they can argue it's Hillary since it states he has no desire for women


                    • Originally posted by Rushing Jaws View Post
                      I suppose it makes a difference from ID'ing the AC with the Pope - or the Pope with the AC. Since a lot of putative ACs have not been noted for denying the reality of the Incarnation, they fail St John's test of recognition as the AC.

                      I want to see whether a woman POTUS is identified as the AC... Queen Victoria could be the AC - her reign began in 1837. 18x37 = 666. 2016 is one of the years identified as the close of the 1260 "prophetic years" in Revelation. We have almost 4 months to go.
                      Well, this is pretty interesting.

                      In the latest edition of La Repubblica, Pope Francis' longtime atheist friend and interviewer, Eugenio Scalfari, claims that the Pope told him that once Jesus Christ became incarnate, he was a man, a "man of exceptional virtues" but "not at all a God."

                      I honestly wasn't putting that much weight in the pope's connection to end times, but man, the script practically writes itself here.


                      • Originally posted by seanD View Post
                        Well, this is pretty interesting.

                        I honestly wasn't putting that much weight in the pope's connection to end times, but man, the script practically writes itself here.
                        My bad, I just now remembered the opposite view is true of John's specific identifier, which seems a bit odd to me and is probably what threw me off for a sec. You'd think folks living around that era would be less likely to deny Jesus came in the flesh than to deny his divinity.


                        • Originally posted by seanD View Post
                          My bad, I just now remembered the opposite view is true of John's specific identifier, which seems a bit odd to me and is probably what threw me off for a sec. You'd think folks living around that era would be less likely to deny Jesus came in the flesh than to deny his divinity.
                          John deals with that also, in ch. 8 of his Gospel.
                          Geislerminian Antinomian Kenotic Charispneumaticostal Gender Mutualist-Egalitarian.

                          Beige Federalist.

                          Nationalist Christian.

                          "Everybody is somebody's heretic."

                          Social Justice is usually the opposite of actual justice.

                          Proud member of the this space left blank community.

                          Would-be Grand Vizier of the Padishah Maxi-Super-Ultra-Hyper-Mega-MAGA King Trumpius Rex.

                          Justice for Ashli Babbitt!

                          Justice for Matthew Perna!

                          Arrest Ray Epps and his Fed bosses!


                          • Originally posted by seanD View Post
                            Well, this is pretty interesting.

                            I honestly wasn't putting that much weight in the pope's connection to end times, but man, the script practically writes itself here.
                            As I noted elsewhere, to accept Scalfari's assertion as accurate requires one to take secondhand information from an unreliable source as more accurate than Francis's attestations elsewhere that Jesus was, in fact, God. Unless someone is trying to claim that Francis secretly denies Jesus's divinity and admitted that to Scalfari, which doesn't make that much sense (why admit such a secret to someone who would have a likelihood of spilling the beans?).


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