It would seem that most of Revelation is written in code.
An example of that would be: Beasts with multiple heads; all of which represent empires, kingdoms and rulers, but you are not given the rules to break the code directly.
If I only looked at verse 10 in the KJV it comes across as a riddle and takes a very different meaning from many other translations. The question is, which one is right?
One might assume that the one that is leading others into captivity would be the Antichrist and since Islam is one the leading advocates of beheading by sword, they fit the mold quite nicely as the ones doing the killing by sword.
In this modern world we live in where advancements in technology are rapidly changing and improving the way we kill people, why the sword? The sword within Islam almost takes on a religious theme, and may well fall under that category.
Here in the United States we already have a large collection of FEMA detainment camps; sometimes referred as protective facilities. Who is being protected? Us Christians from those that wish to remove our rights and freedoms? I do not think so. Do you really believe that believers will be treated respectfully while detained there? Then you are deluded.
Other versions of this passage read like this:
Why this is an entirely different spin from the KJV for it for it removes the focus off the perpetrator and places it on the victim.
In theory this may be one of the ways God has chosen for us to understand what is to befall those that are left.
Penn Jillette of the magical act, Penn and Teller, has been very vocal about being an agnostic and his disappointment in Christians not taking the responsibility to tell someone like him if something equitable to a devastating train wreck is about to befall him. At least then he could make a logical decision about how to react to that information. I believe that what I am doing could equate to something like that. Having seen in scripture what is coming for those who wait, I warn you; this world after the rapture will not be pretty. Sure the man who shows up will be handsome (maybe), well spoken, charismatic, and have all the right things to say, calming most people down. Following him will be a tragic and last error in judgment for worshiping that man and taking any marks he demands will end your chances for God's redemption, and there will still be a chance (kind of like playing a card trick, only God has the deck of cards and Mr. Penn Jillette will not be able to figure out what he is doing should he end up before the white throne of judgment.)
By translating verse 10 from the victim's point of view it enlightens but possibly misdirected the world from looking at reality.
Let's take at look at the words being used, because I want to understand.
Nothing short of confusing when you look at it like this, but give me a moment.
Again confusing and I do not read Greek but the Strong's reference numbers are the same. Originally written in Greek and then transliterated into English guys like me are at the mercy of those who seem to know. For me it is beneficial to compare texts.
There is a common thread between the two translations
Here is the perseverance and the faith of the saints.
If the focus is on the perpetrator then it seems that God is spelling out the type of retribution that they shall receive. Why then would it be necessary for the Saints to have perseverance and faith?
If they focus is really intended to be upon the victims then this statement makes all the sense in the world.
What does it mean to have perseverance and faith?
Perseverance, according to the Greek, means to be steadfast constant and to endure. But what are you enduring? And for what purpose?
The ISBE and Vine's expository call it a different Greek word and the ISBE says it only occurs one time in the NT and that is Ephesians 6:18.
The KJV states it this way: Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.I suppose it is safe to say that the word endurance and patience kind of lean in the same direction.
Strongs tells us that the word patience is: Hupomonē - From G5278; cheerful (or hopeful) endurance, constancy:- enduring, patience, patient continuance (waiting).
So then what are the Saints, going through the tribulation, waiting for? God to rescue them and give them a home in his arms also.
If I could warn you of impending death or imprisonment with torture, then adding a statement that allows you to mentally prepare might be a good thing. I am certain that a statement like this does that very thing for some.
As I sat down to dinner this night at Chick-fil-A, a business known for its Christian stance, a man walks up to the counter with a t-shirt on that expresses some aspect of how he feels. It said some name and the words, “standing at hell's gates.” It would seem to me that he has no hope of a future with God.
In focusing on verse 10 alone, I believe that for some there will be a separation from the body only to find themselves in the presence of the Lord, while others may find themselves faced with hell's gates and the sudden realization that this is not really where they wanted to be.
I am almost embarrassed to tell you this because it is the environment I grew up in, but the religious assumptions I heard left me with the idea that there was no hope for anyone after the rapture. Clearly that is not the case. Why?
- The verse we have dealt with speaks to the Saints and implies the necessity of faith and patience.
- Peter stood on the day of Pentecost, as recorded in Acts chapter 2, and told those scoffers that what they were hearing was the prophecy of Joel chapter 2 being fulfilled in their hearing.Do you realize that the prophecy of Joel is one about the last days? And the fact that Peter announced that it was fulfilled on that day and forward. Lawyers like to call things like this a precedence, and establishes a freedom to act a certain way from that point on.We, in our Christian circles, love to use the prophecy of Joel to describe something out the ordinary that typically happens to the youth, in the realm of the prophetic, primarily with our pre-rapture church body. (Note: You will not see anything like this at the church I go to. It is not allowed. - A warning: God will tear the walls off your church building if you try to keep him out.) While Peter's statements give us the precedent to use it, it is primarily directed to a handful, maybe larger, of Saints that are not merely surviving the horrors of the great tribulation, but living in extraordinary victory during this time. They will come to understand that they are not of this world. Filled with the Holy Spirit they walk in the freedom and power of the most feared of prophets who walked this earth. (Consider. If you came to a person like this, humbly seeking to know and understand the God they have come to know and understand, how do you think they would respond? With the loving merciful nature of the God that empowers them.Take the time to Read the first two chapters (at least) of Joel. You will find that the emphasis is on the Day of the Lord, a day of darkness and gloom, and that aspect alone is at the end of the seven-year period.
One of the main themes in the NT is our hope, a hope in a future with Jesus Christ and the Father. That is what these Saints of the tribulation years have come to understand and hope in too. Obviously a hope like this is built within you, but based upon what? The scriptures, a witness, a testimony, and a faith in a message. Nothing has changed for the scriptures tell us that faith comes by hearing, but we assume that there is no one left to tell them. Think about it. Why send two witnesses to earth. Sure they will have an impact on Israel but broadcast on global television the world will see what men of God really act like and say. We also know that an angel flies around the globe preaching the good news of Jesus Christ. And then there is not only copies of the bible left everywhere, but guys like me that post it on the Internet.
I am asking you look into the scriptures for yourself. Yes it is appropriate to compare your notes against what scholars have ascertained, doing that has multiple effects:
- It gives you a compass that tells you that you might be headed in the right direction and
- It allows you to confirm that your thoughts are sound (keep in mind that if you Born Again and filled with the Holy Spirit, then you have a guide and teacher – trust him.)But remember, even scholars have leaned toward spinning the result to satisfy those who are paying their bills. No one is paying my bills and that is why I am attempting to rock the boat a little.
The only way to gain assurance that your hope is in heaven is to accept Jesus as Lord of your life, and that the Father has promised a life with him in heaven. Choosing against that pits you against the time of judgment that was meant for those who reject him; that includes Israel. Even Israel will be shown mercy but not without a cost. You do not have go through something that was not meant for you. To go there is purely your choice. Choose wisely was the phrase used in the Raiders of the Lost Ark movie. I would hope that you do.