FRIDAY MORNING MANNA
November 6, 2015
Biblical Numerology: NUMBER THREE – Part XXI
The Threefold Union in the Battle of Armageddon (Continued)
The 15-paged pamphlet,ARMAGEDDON–The Time of Spiritual Israel’s Deliverance, with listed mailing address (no printing date or copyright then), as: Louis F. Were, Box 363F, G.P.O., Melbourne, Victoria, Modern Printing Co., Ltd. Chancery Lane, Adelaide, Australia, will be quoted in full, progressively, with notes and additional observations as indicated.
For the scope and profound nature of the subjects, this pamphlet is concise and comprehensive. It quickly answers questions which have puzzled many Bible students into either giving up further study or taking up Futurism which discards God’s system of enlargement, i.e., type-antitype, “comparing scripture with scripture,” studying it “line upon line, here a little there a little” (Isa. 28: 9-13). The Bible, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit is its own expositor, not church teachings based on man’s philosophies and traditions. This pamphlet lays down both groundwork and springboard for expansion as we continue studying the topics in the light of the “law and testimony” (Isa. 8: 20) and pertinent historic as well as current events.
I rejoiced then, and much more now, seeing the Biblical soundness of these expositions as a spiritually logical continuum of the 2300-day prophecy in connection with sanctuary messageexcluding any form of time-setting—all prophetic time having ended in October 22, 1844. It was sometime in 1994 that I first got hold of these Christ-centered, scholarly research and writings of this Australian evangelist and author. I consider these tracts, with his centerpiece book, The Certainty of the Third Angel’s Message, as one of my valuable resources after the writings of Ellen G. White but at par with that of Uriah Smith, Stephen Haskell, James White, Leroy E. Froom, F.C. Glibert, M. L. Andreasen, Leslie Hardinge, and other authors who saw through the same lens of understanding the two major prophetic books of Daniel and Revelation. But towering above all things, these authors uplift Jesus Christ as the Creator and Redeemer, the way the truth and the life, and that “all scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto good works.” 2 Tim. 3: 16, K.J.V.
The important questions answered in this tract are the following [words in brackets mine]:
“1. What is the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy Teaching Regarding War?
2. What is the True Interpretation of Rev. 16: 12-16?
3. The Style of Revelation?
4. The Difference Between Futurism and the Third Angel’s Message?
5. Who are Represented by the Dragon, Beast, and False Prophet who lead the World to Armageddon? Rev. 16: 13-16.
6. Why is Armageddon of Special Interest to the Church?
7. The Time Element Involved the 6th and 7th Plagues.
8. Definite Extracts from the Spirit of Prophecy Concerning Armageddon.
9. Satan’s Opposition to Truth from the Book of Revelation.
WHAT IS THE BIBLE AND SPIRIT OF PROPHECY TEACHING REGARDING WAR?
(a) War Among The Nations
“Both the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy predict that wars and other troubles will recur and grow in scope and intensity [with heretofore unheard of sophistication of modern warfare with the dawn of digital technology, enabling surgical precision and destructive and killing capacity, including the newspeak of cyber warfare, drones, and global snooping into private lives and among so-called ally nations] until the end. Matt. 24: 7, 8; Mark 13: 7, 8 (margin); Rev. 11: 18.
‘Soon grievous troubles, will arise among the nations—troubles that will not cease till Jesus comes. . . .The judgments of God are upon the land. The wars and rumors of wars, the destruction by fire and flood, say clearly that the time of trouble, which is to increase until the end, is very near at hand. We have no time to lose. The world is stirred with the spirit of war. The prophecies of the eleventh of Daniel have almost reached their final fulfillment,’- E. G. White, Review & Herald, Nov. 24, 1904 (WM 136).
“But the Spirit of Prophecy, in harmony with the Bible, while speaking of wars in general, is completely silent concerning a military gathering of nations to Palestine for Armageddon.
(b) War Against the [true] Church
“Armageddon is the destruction of all who have made ‘war’ against God, His law, and His church. See Vol. 6Testimonies, p. 406, 307, etc. Both the Bible and SOP give abundant light on the great controversy between Christ and Satan, referring to that age-long struggle as the ‘war,’ ‘battle,’ or ‘controversy’ [also ‘struggle’]. Rev. 12: 7, 17; 13: 4, 7; 16: 14, 17: 14; 19: 11; 20: 8.
NOTE: Several passages from the SOP state the total length of the controversy at 6,000 years,—the true age of young earth. Six is the number of man, having been created on that day. Six plus “a thousand years” of the millennium totals 7,000—God’s number! We cite only two:
‘The great controversy between Christ and Satan, that has been carried forward for nearly six thousand years, is soon to close; and the wicked one [Satan, Rev. 12: 12] redoubles his efforts to defeat the work of Christ in man’s behalf and to fasten souls in his snares. To hold the people in darkness and impenitence till the Savior’s mediation is ended, and there is no longer a sacrifice for sin, is the object which he seeks to accomplish.” –Ibid,Maranatha,p. 130.
‘At the close of the thousand years, Christ again returns to the earth . . . . Satan’s work of ruin is forever ended. For six thousand years he has wrought his will, filling the earth with woe and causing grief throughout the universe. The whole creation has groaned and travailed together in pain [Rom. 8:22]. Now God’s creatures are forever delivered from his presence and temptations. [Isa. 14: 7 quoted].”- Ibid,Great Controversy (1911), pp. 662, 673,
“The ‘war’ or ‘battle’ described by the Revelator from its commencement in heaven (Rev. 12:7) until its close (Rev. 16: 14; 9:11; 20:8), is what is revealed in ‘The Conflict of the Ages’ series of the Spirit of Prophecy. ‘There was war in heaven. Angels engaged in battle; Satan wished to conquer the Son of God.’ – Ibid, Early Writings, p. 146.
“Notice the next extract in which ‘conflict’ is employed instead of ‘war.’
‘The great conflict that Satan created in the heavenly courts is soon, very soon, to be forever decided. Soon all the inhabitants of the earth will have takensides, either for or against the government of heaven.” – Ibid, Vol. 7Testimonies, p. 141.
‘The Sabbath question is to be theissue in the great final conflict in whichall the world will act a part.’ – Ibid, Vol. 6 Testimonies, p. 352.
“Great wars are predicted in the Bible and the Testimonies but where themisapplication comes about is inconfusing the prophecies which predictspiritual ‘war’ against the church by applying them to a literal war of nations. The ‘spiritual war’ in couched in a Palestinian [Middle Eastern] setting because the church—spiritual Israel—has taken the place of national Israel [in the transition from the Jewish dispensation to the Christian dispensation after Christ’s death, resurrection, and ascension, following type and antitype], and, as such, national enemies of national Israel now apply as spiritual enemies of spiritualIsrael. See Ezekiel chapters 38, 38; Zechariah 14, etc.
“The great controversy between Christ and Satan is described by prophetic ‘war’ scenes. The Scriptures also mention wars of nations against nations [currently escalating]. Seventh-day Adventists are united in the belief that the finale of the spiritual conflict will be waged around the enforcement of Sunday laws which will bring to God’s people persecution and the threat of death. We are also united in the belief that national wars will recur and ravage the earth so long as sin remains in man’s heart.[That is, the sinful, covetous, disobedient, idolatrous “old man,” carnal, fleshly unconverted mind and heart. Rom. 6; Eph. 4: 22; Col. 3: 9, etc.
“Divergence of viewpoint comes only in the interpretation or application (whether to apply to the literal, military war between nations, in Palestine, as taught by the false system of prophetic interpretation known as Futurism which has been fostered by the Papacy, or to the spiritual war between the forces of good and evil as taught in the Spirit of Prophecy [see Eph. 6: 10-18, etc.]—for proof of the latter see my [L. F. Were’s ]‘Armageddon—Before and After the Millenium’) of such prophecies as Rev. 16: 12-16; Ezek. chapters 38, 39; Joel 3; Zech. 14, etc.
“It is not a difference of doctrine, but a question of the use or the application of the above-mentioned prophecies. The writer [L. F. Were], and a constantly increasing number of ministers, teachers, and others, believe that these passages of Scripture are prophecies which depict the closing scenes in the great ‘war’ between the forces of our incomparable Lord at the head of spiritual Israel, and Satan leading his army—the wicked world.”
NOTE: The “wicked world” are the stubborn rejecters of God’s love, grace, wisdom, power, and plan of redemption given in the final warning messages for these last days. Their defiance of God’s law is almost universal now (9T 92). The book of death in heaven contains their evil deeds (EW 52). Divine mercy is finally withdrawn from them after close of probation (EW 281-2), and no new probation will be granted them, contrary to popular errors of our time (GC 662). There are two universal great errors on two opposite ends concerning the wicked: a) that God is too loving and good to destroy them (GC 537-40); b) at death they immediately go to hell and burn there eternally (GC 545, 535-8). While they owe the blessings of this life to the presence of God’s people (DA 306), yet are the ones who plan to exterminate God’s people in one night in all lands after the close of probation (GC 635). They finally receive the seven last plagues for persisting to worship (obey) the beast and his image by receiving his mark in their foreheads or in their hands. Their destiny is forever fixed by their own choice.(GC 534).
“The church is represented as being ‘in the land of Israel.’ See also such passages as Isa. 11: 11, 12; 60: 1-21; Ezek 9: 1-7; 34: 1-31, 40-48; Joel 2: 1, 15-18, 23, 32; 3: 1-17; Zech. 14: 2, 3, 13; Eph. 2: 11-13; Rom. 11: 26; 1 Pet. 2: 6-9; Heb. 12: 22; Rev. 11: 1, 2; 14: 1, 20; etc. The message goes out to all the faithful to come out of Babylon into Zion or Jerusalem. The call is for a change ofallegiance from [spiritual] Babylon and her counterfeit Sabbath to [spiritual] Zion and the true Sabbath. God’s followers all over the world are [spiritual] Israel.
“The coming of the church ‘out’ of Babylon (Rev. 18: 4) and ‘gathering’ to the land of Israel (Isa. 11: 11, 12; Early Writings, 74-76) is, of course, a spiritualgathering. Consequently, beingrepresented as taking the place of literal Israel, national Israel’s enemies are now to be understood as the enemies ofspiritual Israel, and their warlike gatherings to attack Israel as imageryrepresenting the perils and the triumphs of the church. That is why the Revelator, in describing the coming conflict, speaks of the symbolical place where Israel’s enemies will be slaughtered as being a ‘place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.’
“Spiritual Hebrews should understand the significance of the term ‘Armageddon.’ The prophecies concerning it contains a message which cannot be fully understood by others [until they accept the three angels’ messages of the everlasting gospel of Revelation 14]. As the church’sgathering is a symbolical or spiritual gathering (see also Ephesians 2: 21, 22, etc) to the land of Israel, so the gathering of the nations to attack spiritual Israel is also a spiritual gathering.”- (pp. 1, 2)
(To be continued next week)