February 10, 2010
I greet you once again in the Name of Jesus!
I am sure that any American old enough to remember September 11, 2001 will never forget the awful events of that day and exactly where they were when they heard the news and saw the images being beamed live via satellite from “ground zero” in New York City. Without fear of contradiction I believe that we can say that this event was this generation’s Pearl Harbor.
As a nation I believe that we were forever changed. In many respects the United States of America has never been the same, and never will be again. It seems that we turned a corner on that day, began a new era, and entered, if you will, a new age. With the passing of the Patriot Act many of our personal freedoms and liberties have been surrendered in the name of the war on terror. Ours is now a full blown surveillance society. If you want to see some of the technology that is out there to track where any person is at any time, check out the Will Smith movie, Enemy of the State. Nothing is really private anymore.
I believe from a prophetic standpoint that the event we have come to refer to as 9-11 was a prophetic stepping stone. Remember that we said in an earlier teaching that prophetically speaking there are events that are definitely milestones, while other events are stepping stones. For example, the first Advent of Christ was a prophetic milestone. It was an event declared by the prophets. Prophetically speaking the world had reached an appointed time, a fullness of time event. The Second Coming of Christ will be a milestone event.
On the way to these milestones are many prophetic stepping stones. In and of themselves they may not be major prophetic events; however they are steps closer to it. Therefore, I believe that the events of 9-11 were a prophetic stepping stone. What are they leading us to? I believe that they are leading us to the final kingdom of this age, and the revealing of the man of sin. Up until the attacks on the Twin Towers, The Pentagon, and the foiled attempt to attack our Nation’s capital; most Americans had very little knowledge of the Islamic faith. Now Islam, Muslims, jihad, Islamo-facism, and other such terms have become almost household words.
Let me be very clear here, I have no problem with good, honest, freedom loving Muslims. However, I believe that the rise of radical Islam and their hatred for this Country and the State of Israel is a definite prophetic stepping stone. Why? Because I believe, contrary to much prophecy teaching that we have heard, that the antichrist will have a connection to radical Islam and will indeed be a gentile of Middle Eastern descent. I realize that is quite a statement, but I believe we will present evidence to substantiate it. It will be necessary to give some details and lay some foundation. I don’t want to rush through this. We need to start putting the pieces of the prophetic puzzle together and discern the times we are living in.
What about the connection between the antichrist and radical Islam? More than one hundred twenty years ago an Islamic leader by the name of, Muhammad Ahmed, united the tribes in Sudan to defeat Egypt using sticks and swords. Over a century later, another Muslim who lived in Sudan was expelled in 1996. He was quite familiar with the history of the Sudanese leader Ahmed and his exploits. Thus, Osama bin Laden was following in the pattern of an Islamic hero. Both Ahmed and bin Laden lived in a cave. Both were recognized as warriors, Ahmed fighting the Egyptian army, and bin Laden fighting the Russians in Afghanistan. Ahmed promised to take Egypt, Mecca, and Jerusalem captive, just as bin Laden promised.
According to both Ahmed and bin Laden, all infidels who would not submit to Islam should be killed by beheading. And both stood against the Western culture. Muhammad bin Laden (Osama’s father) was a contractor, billionaire, and founder of the Bin Laden Corporation. For forty years he spoke of the coming Mahdi. He even established a fund of millions of dollars to help the Mahdi restore the grandeur of Islam in the world. I don’t suppose that he realized that his son, who would be forced to leave Saudi Arabia, would one day lay claim to this title. A video tape discovered years ago in a raid showed Osama at a dry-erase board with the Arabic phrase, “Awaited enlightened one.” Detainees at Guantanamo Bay (Gitmo) say bin Laden thinks he is the “awaited enlightened one.” In 2001, bin Laden signed his name Osama bin Muhammad bin Laden, giving him an apocalyptic dimension.
One of the interesting Islamic traditions related to the future Islamic savior is where it is believed he is hiding. A Turkish sheikh stated: “The Great War will break out between East and West. These will be very difficult days for mankind. There will be very strong fighting. Very many people will be killed. Then the Lord will command al-Mahdi Alaihi as-Salam to appear. Now he is in a cave, in a big, deep cave. No one can approach it. Jinns (genies) are protecting and guarding him.” Many Muslims, especially from the Shi’ite branch, believe the Mahdi is being protected and supernaturally preserved in an empty desert area in Arabia. This is yet further evidence, as far as I am concerned, of the deception connected to all of this. Remember Jesus said, “Therefore if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it.” [Matt. 24:26 NKJV]
Much more could be said concerning bin Laden, however it is unlikely that many Muslims around the world see bin Laden as their long-awaited messiah. To many Muslims, the influence of his al Qaeda network has had as much negative influence on the radical Islamic agenda as its positive effects. No one can say with certainty where bin Laden is hiding, or even if he still lives. However, this does not negate, in my opinion, that the antichrist of scripture will indeed be a radical Muslim. Up until the events of 9-11 few Westerners, including myself, knew anything concerning the beliefs and practices of the adherents to radical Islam. Now however much of this has come to light. When one compares these beliefs and practices to Bible prophecy, the connection is quite apparent.
I believe that the future antichrist will claim the Islamic faith as his own, and will proclaim himself, and be received as, Islam’s final awaited “messiah.” In other words, I believe that the Islamic Mahdi and the Biblical antichrist are one in the same. He will be a master of war, using weapons of mass destruction to hold entire nations hostage [See Rev. 13:4]. Those who do not convert to his religion will be beheaded, and others will be forced into starvation [See Rev. 13:17; 20:4]. Please don’t relegate this teaching to prophetic fiction. It is far from that.
To further demonstrate what I am teaching here, next time we will take a journey into the scriptures to receive a clearer picture of the antichrist of prophecy. You don’t want to miss it!
The Weekly Word is found in 1 John 2:18. Here the Bible says,
18 Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. [1 John 2:18 ESV]
Until next time, this is THE WEEKLY WORD.
Pastor Kevin E. Johnson