The Rule of Wild Beasts
Hosea 13:7-9 says,
7 So I will be like a lion to them; like a leopard I will lie in wait by the wayside. 8 I will encounter them like a bear robbed of her cubs, and I will tear open their chests; there I will also devour them like a lioness, as a wild beast would tear them. 9 That is your destruction, O Israel, that you are against Me, against your help.
Because of the false images of God which they worshiped, attributing things to Him which were not true, He was to become “like a lion” and “like a leopard” and “like a bear” to Israel, slashing at them with tooth and claw “as a wild beast would tear them.”
This prophecy is perhaps the first to suggest the rise of the four beasts in Daniel 7. Babylon was to manifest the lion (Dan. 7:4), Medo-Persia was the bear (Dan. 7:5), Greece was the leopard (Dan. 7:6). Daniel’s nameless beast with iron teeth and ten horns (Dan. 7:7) appears to be the “wild beast” of Hosea 13:8.
This wild-beast judgment fulfilled a part of the Law of Tribulation found in Lev. 26:22,
22 And I will let loose among you the beasts of the field, which shall bereave you of your children and destroy your cattle and reduce your number so that your roads lie deserted.
Hosea introduces us to these wild beasts, telling us, in effect, that God is in them—that is, God controls these wild beasts, for it is God Himself who is to tear Israel apart. The prophet implies that these prophetic beasts were nations, not animals as such.
However, this is an early revelation, and Hosea leaves it to another prophet to give us more details at a later time. It is left to Daniel to identify these beasts more precisely with specific nations and to give us a more precise order of their appearance. Hosea lists the leopard before the bear, but Daniel shows clearly that the bear was to come before the leopard.
Israel and Judah Ruled by Beasts
Hosea speaks in another way where Daniel is largely silent. Hosea tells us that these beasts were sent to judge Israel-Ephraim, whereas Daniel focused mostly upon Judah and Jerusalem. By linking Daniel with Hosea, we are able to piece together the full scope of the prophecy. The four beasts were to affect not only Judah, but Israel as well, even though technically, Assyria was not one of the four beasts.
Babylon was one of the provinces of Assyria during the time of the Assyrian empire. Babylon then conquered Nineveh in 612 B.C. and fully overthrew Assyria in 607 B.C., and in this way Babylon rose up from a province to an empire.
The same occurred later when Persia overthrew Babylon. Each time an empire was overthrown, the victor replaced it and became the next beast in Daniel’s prophecy. The lengthy time of these “wild beasts,” was to be a period of “seven times” (Lev. 26:18), or 7 x 360 years, which meant that Israel, as well as Judah, was to be affected by the rule of beasts. Note too that Jer. 27:7 said of King Nebuchadnezzar, “all the nations shall serve him.” Hence, Babylon was given authority over “all the nations,” whether he actually conquered them or not. This Dominion Mandate was then passed in succession to the bear, the leopard, and finally to the iron-toothed nation.
It is clear, then, that to these beasts God gave Judah’s Dominion Mandate, as well as Joseph’s Fruitfulness Mandate that was inherent in the Birthright. Not only did they rule the earth, but they also claimed its resources. And as long as each beast retained its power—backed by the divine court—the Kingdom of God lacked the authority to rule the earth. Likewise, the overcomers lacked God’s authorization to become manifested sons of God. The Kingdom of God, then, had to take a back seat and submit to the beasts for a period of “seven times.”
Daniel tells us that at the end of the final beast’s “little horn” manifestation, the saints of the Most High God were to be given jurisdiction (Dan. 7:21, 22). In his earlier prophecy about the great image, the rise of the Kingdom of God was pictured as a “stone” which was to hit the image on its feet at the end of the age (Dan. 2:34, 35). The growth of this “stone” into a great mountain filling the whole earth depicted the last world empire, ruled by Jesus Christ and the overcomers, i.e., the “saints of the Most High.”
This great event, this revolutionary change in the history of the earth, was to mark the return of both of the Mandates to those who were truly called to reign with Christ as manifested sons of God. The overthrow of the last beast empire means that the saints are to be given both the Dominion Mandate of Judah and the Fruitfulness Mandate of Ephraim. As Hosea 1:11 tells us, Judah and Israel were to “appoint for themselves one leader,” Jesus Christ, reuniting the Scepter and the Birthright for the first time since Jacob divided them among his sons in Genesis 49.
The End of Beast Rule
The fact that both Israel and Judah were to come under the dominion of these beasts had other prophetic implications. The “seven times” judgment in Lev. 26:18 was to be applied with different time periods, because Israel’s judgment began more than a century earlier than the judgment upon Judah.
Israel’s tribes on the east side of Jordan were taken into captivity in 745 B.C., and Samaria was taken in 721 B.C. These two dates give us the start of Israel’s “seven times” of judgment, ending from 1776-1800 A.D. America’s founding in 1776, followed by the construction of the nation’s capital in 1800, technically ended Israel’s 2,520-year captivity.
America’s ministers at the time recognized this, including Jonathan Edwards’ grandson, Timothy Dwight, president of Yale and principle founder of the Disciples of Christ. It appeared to them that America was the stone kingdom of Dan. 2:34, and they preached many sermons about this. Timothy Dwight’s poem, Columbia, expressed this idea clearly, where he called America by its alternate name, Columbia:
Columbia, Columbia, to glory arise,
The queen of the world, and child of the skies;
Thy reign is the last, and the noblest of time,
Most fruitful thy soil, most inviting thy clime;
Let the crimes of the east ne’er encrimson thy name,
Be freedom, and science, and virtue, thy fame.
However, as so often happens, they lacked sufficient understanding of the broader picture. They failed to see how Judah’s “seven times” had to come to pass before the fullness of prophecy could be fulfilled. Judah and Jerusalem had capitulated to King Nebuchadnezzar in 604 B.C. (and only later was the city destroyed in 586 B.C.). Judah’s “seven times” judgment extended from 604 B.C. until 1917 A.D., when British General Allenby took Jerusalem from the Ottoman Empire at the close of World War 1.
Other prophecy teachers, such as H. Gratton Guinness, foresaw and foretold this event in the late 1800’s, for the light given to him was greater than that given to the preachers at the time of America’s founding. But even Guinness failed to take into account the lost century from 164-64 B.C., when the third beast (Greece) lost control of Jerusalem. As long as Jerusalem was independent under the Hasmonean priest-kings, God’s “seven times” contract with the beasts could not be fulfilled. Hence, that century could not be counted toward the “seven times” allotted to beast rule.
So a century must be added to the year 1917 to account for the lost century, bringing us to 2017. Because past prophecy teachers were given only a partial revelation, we must ask ourselves with some humility whether or not we truly know even today the full scope of this revelation. We are as convinced today as they were in the past that we are seeing the complete picture, and so we must prepare our hearts accordingly. But we are only human, and revelation is progressive. Events themselves will prove all things as they come to pass.
Early Millennial Views
For the first hundred years of the early Church, when Hebrew thought patterns dominated biblical teaching, the idea of a Sabbath Millennium was commonly taught. We see it taught in the early part of the second century by such writers as Barnabas (115 A.D.) and Papias (who died in 155 A.D.).
However, after the death of Papias, the last true Hebrew-Christian writer, thought patterns were overwhelmed by Greek culture, and with it came the allegorical interpretation of the Old Testament. John’s thousand-year Kingdom Age in Revelation 20 was discarded for a more individualized interpretation, and this view was made official when Augustine adopted it in the fifth century.
The history of the Old Testament was likewise treated as allegory, mostly to explain how a loving God could command the genocide of Canaanites and promote warlike attitudes. By allegorizing history, the early Greek Christians hoped to make the gospel more palatable to their Greek audience, for the Greeks were used to mythological holy books.
Likewise, the resurrection was redefined to mean regeneration within each individual, according to the principle of a baptized believer being buried and rising in newness of life through baptism. The idea of a bodily resurrection was lost in this transition from Hebrew to Greek thought patterns until the time of the Protestant Reformation.
The Reformation reintroduced the Bible as being rooted in history, and Augustine’s allegorical view of prophecy began to be overturned. Jonathan Edwards, in the first half of the 1700’s, rejected Augustine’s view of prophecy, while at the same time he gave new life to Augustine’s view of original sin and the depravity of human nature. Even so, Edwards looked for an earthly victory of the Kingdom of God, something that Augustine thought to be hopeless.
Even before the rise of Edwards, in the 1600’s, shortly after the settlement of America began, men began to foresee the rise of a new nation on a new continent. As an outgrowth of the Reformation and the Geneva Experiment of John Calvin, the new Americans began to see themselves as a New Israel and a Redeemer Nation.
God was to redeem the whole earth and not just a few believers. The goal of the gospel, in fact, was to prepare the way for the saints to rule the Kingdom on earth. Evangelism was seen as a duty that included righting the wrongs of unjust laws and oppressive governments, a duty which extended to the abolitionist fight to end slavery in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries culminating in the Civil War (1860).
It was believed that America was the Stone Kingdom predicted in Dan. 2:34 that was destined to overthrow the Roman system of Feudalism that was yet firmly entrenched in Europe through the Justinian Code. America’s destiny was to set the world free of Roman slavery, both politically and religiously. Spiritual freedom was to result in political freedom.
The downside of this was the invention of Manifest Destiny (1845), which was a type of nationalistic theology, which overran the rights of Native Americans in their zeal to establish the Kingdom of God. Somehow, in their zeal to set the earth free, the Native Americans were overlooked or disregarded. Too many viewed them as an obstacle to the Kingdom, an enemy to be overcome, rather than as a people to be set free by the gospel.
More than anything, the fusion of American religion with politics and social reform discredited the Augustinian allegorical prophetic view. To accomplish this, of course, Christian churches had to tolerate each other’s minor differences, so the idea of the separation of church and state was adopted. This did not separate government from moral or religious influence, but rather separated it from any specific religious denomination that might impose its view upon the others.
With the rise of America’s Christian-based principles of social reform and government-protected rights of men, the early Hebrew view of a literal Millennium was reestablished. Whereas allegorical interpretation limited salvation to people as individuals, the new view extended it to historical salvation that was predestined through the prophecy of the Stone Kingdom. Social reform was the natural outcome of religious reformation.
With all of this came a sense of enthusiastic confidence in the future, a sense of American purpose and destiny. Ultimately, beginning in 1776 it came to fruition with the Declaration of Independence with the assertion that all rights come from God, and that governments of men are bound by God to defend those rights—not to grant them.
America’s religious community thought of itself as destined to lead the world out of tyranny into the principles of liberty. While France was attempting to do so through Masonic secularism, America believed this goal to be possible only through the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Death of Optimism
The optimism of the new nation began to break down when the founders failed to outlaw slavery in the Constitution. Secondly, when the new nation’s capital, Washington D.C., was built in the 1790’s, it was built upon land donated by Roman Catholics on land originally called “Rome.” The original deed of 1663 was in the name of Francis Pope, but it later became known as Jenkins Heights.
Thus, preparations were already being made in secret to return America to the control of Rome. The New Israel eventually failed as it was replaced by New Rome. Instead of becoming the Stone Kingdom, as so many had envisioned, America became an extension of Rome, the fourth kingdom of the iron-toothed beast.
The Civil War (1860-1865) shook American optimism to the core. After this, we still saw vestiges of the American dream, but it was increasingly punctuated by war and corruption. World War 1 (1914-1917), billed as the war to end all wars, did not bring peace, but brought America into the final captivity to Mystery Babylon. The age of optimism ended, and the secularization of the American dream began.
Looking back at history, it is obvious today that the Millennium did not begin with America’s founding. Though 1776 was 2,520 years from the captivity of the first tribes of Israel in 745 B.C., there were other beginning points yet to be considered. It was not until 1917 that we reached 2,520 years since Jerusalem’s captivity in 604 B.C.
Even then, no one understood that another century had to be added to the 2,520 years, because of the lost century from 163-63 B.C., when the beasts were deprived of their right to rule Jerusalem. Today (2017) we have reached the next great endpoint of prophecy, and so we have reason to be optimistic again that the Stone Kingdom will soon arise.
The Stone Kingdom will succeed only if the manifested sons of God are transformed into the image of Christ, for without such men and women holding the authority of the Dominion Mandate, we will again fail. As of this writing, the change of the living overcomers and the resurrection of the dead has not yet occurred. Yet we are watchful.
Times of Preparation
It is apparent that the “seven times” judgment upon both Israel and Judah have now come to a conclusion. Israel’s judgment ended with the founding of America and the construction of the nation’s capital. Judah’s judgment ended at the close of World War 1 in 1917. But events themselves proved that more was yet to be fulfilled.
The Federal Reserve Act in 1913 brought an extension of captivity to America and to the world, fulfilling what John called “Mystery Babylon.” Since the four beasts had run their course, Babylon’s rule was being rerun in a new form. It appears that the divine purpose for Mystery Babylon was to complete the beasts’ contract, and that this was to last a hundred years.
On November 29, 1947 the United Nations passed the Palestinian Resolution, dividing the land between the Jews and Palestinians. This event occurred thirty years into the century which had extended the rule of the beast. Because the final beast in its form known as Mystery Babylon yet had another seventy years to complete, it is plain that the formation of the Israeli state did not mark the end of beast rule, nor even the end of Judah’s “seven times” of captivity.
Knowing the times and seasons, it is clear that the Israeli state, which was declared in May 1948, marked the time when the Jewish leaders put themselves on the feet of the last beast, ignoring Jesus’ warning in Matt. 21:43, 44. Jesus warned them about the great stone that was going to hit the feet of the beast, saying, “on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust.” But the Jewish leaders, who were intent on ruling the world by fleshly means—and by the spirit of the beasts—worked hard to control and rule the beast, rather than to kill it.
Since the long-term prophecy appears to end in 2017, it appears that the resolution of this situation will be seen after the Israeli state has been in existence for seventy years.
It seems appropriate, then, that the time allotted to modern Mystery Babylon was from 1917-2017. It began precisely 2,520 years after Nebuchadnezzar first took the city of Jerusalem in 604 B.C. and ends in late 2017. But we also see a 70-year cycle from 1947-2017, dating from the Palestinian Resolution. Further, dating from the Six-Day War in 1967, where the Israelis took control of Jerusalem, the year 2017 is precisely 50 years.
From this point of reference, we have observed a progression of revelation regarding the fall of Babylon. In 1917 three main events occurred: the Balfour Declaration, the establishment of the Soviet Union, and General Allenby’s capture of Jerusalem. The Soviet Union began to collapse in 1987, after being in power for 70 years (to the day). Its collapse marked the start of the fall of Mystery Babylon.
Since then, we have been engaged in spiritual warfare and intercession to prepare for the fall of Babylon—or more to the point, to prepare to rule with Christ in the Age to come. If Mystery Babylon had fallen in 1987, the saints of the Most High would have been caught unprepared, and we might have experienced the chaos seen in Russia in those early years. But God was merciful enough to give the saints a generation to prepare.
Perhaps the time to prepare is the thirty-year period from 1987-2017. The early years of this preparation saw the transition from Saul to David from 1993-2000, as I have explained in other writings. From 2000-2006 was a further transition, and the year 2006 was the end of the 2,520 years since the completion of the second temple in 515 B.C.
All of these events have proven to be critical in the development of world events. The saints of the Most High have used this time to prepare their own hearts, by intercession, spiritual warfare, and by an increase in the knowledge of the Word, so that they could be prepared to rule the Kingdom.
The divine decree transferring jurisdiction to the saints of the Most High became official on October 16, 2014, and at that time we understood that this marked the final three-year cycle to prepare to rule the Kingdom. In 2014 we understood that the end of the year 2017 was to be the next great—and perhaps final—moment of transition.
Time will prove all things, of course, but we know that none of this will be possible apart from a great outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Hence, we await this last great “rain” of the Holy Spirit, which will truly prepare our hearts—and the hearts of all the people of the earth—for the coming of Christ and the new administration of the Stone Kingdom.