Would God Allow His Bride to Go Through the Great Tribulation (And Why)?

“God would not allow his bride to go through the Great Tribulation!”

I couldn’t tell you how many times I have been told the above, or asked it (rhetorically). Most of the time it comes from a staunch pretribber who is not really wanting to find a solution to the dilemma he thinks this question portrays. He is assuming a pretrib rapture is needed for the sake of the “dainty” Bride of Christ.

The question itself comes from a common misunderstanding of what the Great Tribulation is and what it is not. There is another misunderstanding on what we as believers should expect in our life of service to God. Let us address both of these misunderstandings to answer the question at hand properly and in concordance with the Bible.

“Not Appointed to Wrath?” The Great Tribulation is not God’s Wrath

The above question is typically backed up with the verse that “we’re not appointed to wrath” as proof that the bride will not go through the Great Tribulation.

1 Thessalonians 5:9 (HCSB) — ” For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ

What those who quote this verse assume is that the Great Tribulation is God’s wrath. It is not. It is Satan’s wrath. The Bible tells us that Satan’s wrath begins when he is finally barred from entry to heaven.

Revelation 12:12 (ESV) — ” Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!

Today, as in the days of Job, Satan can still go and accuse the brethren. When he is barred from entering, it will be his signal to begin his short time (3½ years) of wrath. This lasts from the 5th trumpet until the 7th trumpet. (For brevity’s sake I will not expound that out here. But my book proves that the 6th seal through 4th trumpet are all a series of related events caused by doomsday star Wormwood, and that the 5th trumpet is the start of the Great Tribulation).

Thus, Satan’s reign, and his wrath with it, end with the 7th trumpet. Then God’s wrath picks up where Satan’s wrath left off:

Revelation 11:15, 18 (NIV) — ” 15 The seventh angel sounded his trumpet…18 The nations were angry; and your wrath has come. The time has come for judging the dead, and for rewarding your servants the prophets and your saints and those who reverence your name, both small and great– and for destroying those who destroy the earth.”

God’s wrath comes exclusively through the seven bowls. It begins after the 7th trumpet and is “filled up” or “made complete” by the 7th bowl:

Revelation 15:1,7 (NIV) — ” 1 I saw in heaven another great and marvelous sign: seven angels with the seven last plagues–last, because with them God’s wrath is completed. 7 Then one of the four living creatures gave to the seven angels seven golden bowls filled with the wrath of God, who lives for ever and ever.

Thus, if we are not appointed to the wrath of God, then that only means we must be out of here by the 7th trumpet before that starts. And that is exactly when the rapture comes, at the “last trump” (KJV):

1 Corinthians 15:52 (HCSB) — “in a moment, in the blink of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed.

“Appointed To Afflictions or Tribulation”

While we are not appointed to wrath and will be rewarded with being born again (John 3:3-8) into a glorified spirit body by then, we do have “endure until the end” (Mt 24:13) through much trouble.

As a lifelong reader and student of the Bible, it really is odd for me to hear Christians claim that “God would never put his precious bride through the terrible tribulation.” Whenever I hear this, I wonder if they are not among the 95% of Christians who have not read their Bible. Because when I read the stories of the saints throughout the OT and NT, I consistently see lives full of trouble, affliction and persecution. Even the ultra-righteous Job has his share.

Or when I look out at the world today I see many lands where there is not freedom of religion. In them, Christians today are living in great tribulation. There is a common saying based on this that only rich Western Christians could possibly imagine a pretrib rapture saving us from the Great Tribulation. God has not saved any of those being murdered today for the truth and the pretrib rapture theory to them clashes with reality. They are dying already for their faith in the present tribulations.

If you look around at conditions on the ground now and previously in Bible times you see God does not seem to be a doting father who “shelters” his children. He lets us face troubles head on and does not save us typically until the last moment after we have cried out passionately for help (much like the Red Sea crossing).

A few verses will suffice in demonstrating this truth plainly:

Acts 14:22 (KJV) — ” Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

1 Thessalonians 3:3-4 (KJV) 3 That no man should be moved by these afflictions: for yourselves know that we are appointed thereunto. 4 For verily, when we were with you, we told you before that we should suffer tribulation; even as it came to pass, and ye know.

Why Must We Suffer, Anyway?

Now you may wonder why does God work this way with us? This is actually the same as the classic question of “why does God allow suffering?” For the Great Tribulation is just a global and more intense class of suffering at the hands of a Satanic government than we already have had throughout history unto this day.

Most Western Christians do not read their Bible (less than 5% according to Back to the Bible). Their expectations for what their life with God will be like are thus based mainly on their experience of playing church in a rich society with freedom of speech and freedom of religion. The concept of real suffering for your faith (which is not simply being put down or having your beliefs ridiculed now and then by skeptics and atheists) is unknown to them in general. Because of this paradigm, when they finally read the Bible, they have a hard time understanding or accepting what they read about suffering experienced by saints or the promises of the same for us, too.

God has a good reason. The Bible is not silent on the reason. This prophetic verse is one that covers it:

Daniel 11:33,35 (HCSB) — ” 33 Those who are wise among the people will give understanding to many, yet they will die by sword and flame, and be captured and plundered for a time. 35 Some of the wise will fall so that they may be refined, purified, and cleansed until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.

This “fall” spoken of clearly refers to suffering persecution and martyrdom. It is to refine us and make us better. This is how God builds his character, makes his Bride ready (Rev 19:7). It even was necessary for Jesus, the firstborn Son of God:

Hebrews 5:8 (HCSB) — Though He was God’s Son, He learned obedience through what He suffered.

If you are rich, distracted and therefore spiritually poor and blind, trials are the specific prescription that Jesus gives for us as well.

Revelation 3:17-18 (HCSB) — ” 17 Because you say, ‘I’m rich; I have become wealthy and need nothing,’ and you don’t know that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked, 18 I advise you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire so that you may be rich, white clothes so that you may be dressed and your shameful nakedness not be exposed, and ointment to spread on your eyes so that you may see.

It’s no mystery what “going through the fire” refers to. It means suffering. The Book of James is well known as a source of meaning and comfort on this topic:

James 1:2-4, 12 (HCSB) — ” 2 Consider it a great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 4 But endurance must do its complete work, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing. 12 A man who endures trials is blessed, because when he passes the test he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him.

God’s Terrestrial Escape Plan For the Great Tribulation

The “Bride of Christ” can bring to mind an image of a dainty maiden, one who cannot withstand hardship. However, that is not the point of the metaphor. The point is that we must be “virginally pure” (Rev 14:4) or ready (Rev 19:7). Being pure of what makes us ready? We’re pure or righteous in God’s sight as long as we trust in his word intending to follow it (Lk 8:21; Gen 15:6).  Our own ideas, man’s religion, man’s ideas, our own thoughts that conflict with or distract us from serving God are the problem. Only those who have shown a steadfastness in following God throughout all kinds of tests and temptations are suitable for the Kingdom of God. Thus, ironically, the method by which we become the Bride every day is exactly what pretrib rapture proponents believe God must not put us through (globally) if we are the bride!

The Bible says and demonstrates repeatedly that we must go through much trouble to make us ready. This builds our character, purges our sin nature and increase our faith and wisdom (James 1:1-12). This is the same process that Christ himself went through. The Great Tribulation is just more of the same, except on a global and intensified scale. Therefore it is improper to deny we will go through the Great Tribulation because God would not subject his bride to such a terrible time. He does every day!

Besides all that, the End Time escape plan of God revealed in the Bible is to protect his bride on the earth through the Great Tribulation in the same way that God protected the Israelites where they were on the earth while the Ten Plagues of his wrath rained down around them. He will guide us to a protected place that Satan cannot reach and feed us during the three and a half year Great Tribulation:

Revelation 12:14 (HCSB) — ” The woman was given two wings of a great eagle, so that she could fly from the serpent’s presence to her place in the wilderness, where she was fed for a time, times, and half a time.

It will be a time of great wonders and community that has not been seen since the First Century, as described in Acts 2. For this reason, I am looking forward to the Great Tribulation without any fear at all. And so should you once you know the truth from the Bible on the matter.

So, “comfort each other with these words” just as Paul said to the Thessalonians (1Th 4:18). By the way, those are the same Thessalonians who Paul instructed on our rapture after the Antichrist and the Great Tribulation appear (2The 2:1-4).


Pretrib Christians who say God won’t let us go through the Great Tribulation are not completely wrong. They believe God must protect us from the Great Tribulation which I completely agree with. The mistake is in thinking that a pretrib rapture to heaven is the only way this protection can or will happen. God must protect us, but there are other ways he can do it

So in the end it’s not wrong that God won’t make his righteous saints go through the Tribulation. I don’t count being taken to a special area where you are protected and fed by God for 3½ years as going through tribulation (Rev 12:14). If we are protected in heaven or protected on earth, how is either situation able to be called “going through the Tribulation”? =)

Sabbath Day/Year Commandments – Six Days/Years of Work/Sowing Required?

People are surprised that I take the time to answer their emails. Yes, I am busy with a young family and living in Costa Rica makes everything take longer to accomplish. For example, yesterday I had to hit a few places to find a replacement NVidia video card with the HDMI connector I needed. Not complaining…I enjoyed walking in the warm sunny weather in between the stores. It just takes longer.

But what readers do not know is that I love answering questions. I love the blessings that come from questions. One big one is the provision of new insights through the Socratic method. Questions force you to think, something we all tend to avoid whenever we can =). But in thinking you can mine some great discoveries from even old elementary topics you thought you mastered long ago.

49 Year Jubilee Cycle Objection:
Six Years of Planting Required?

Case in point is a discussion I had over the Jubilee year cycle with someone who doubts my conclusion that it is 49 years long.  He saw the good points I had but he still saw it as unclear. His final objection that leaned him towards a 50 year Jubilee cycle was this:

I still lean towards the 50 year cycle because if Israel goes back to work right after the jubillee Sabbath year, they will be breaking the command to work 6 years and rest the 7th, since they will then be only working 5 years and resting the 6th year after the jubilee year.

I had never heard such an objection to a 49 year Jubilee cycle. I had to stop and think about it. He was right that a 49 year Jubilee cycle “broke” the six years of planting mentioned in the Sabbath year command. You ended up with only five following a Jubilee year before the next Sabbath year.

I had to admit that I had not thought of the Sabbath year command as requiring Israel to plant for six years on their fields. Was he right? I decided to give it a chance and to think it through.

Six Days of Work Required, Too?

If this was true about the Sabbath year command then it must be true about the Sabbath day command as well. By this line of interpretation, the Sabbath day commandment would require Israel to work six days just as much as they were commanded to not work on Saturday by it.

But immediately I saw a problem with this. What about when you are sick? By this interpretation you still must work. What happens when you want to take a vacation for a week? You cannot or you are breaking the 4th Commandment, “Six days you must work.” Or is that what the 4th Commandment says?

Exodus 20:9 (HCSB) 9 You are to labor six days and do all your work,10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to Yahweh your God. You must not do any work—

The interesting part here is “do all your work”. Not God’s work. God has not commanded average Israelites to do any work in particular during the week days. That would be God’s or “my work”. Instead he tells Israel to do “all your work.” If Israel had no work to do then they did not have to do anything for six days. If an Israelite had enough money to provide for his own, then the Sabbath commandment is not telling him to make busy work for show. If he wanted to take a vacation, then there was no prohibition on that.

The intent of the Sabbath day command is obvious when you think it through. The intent was for Israel to not overwork themselves seven days per week. They would keep Saturday set apart to reconnect with their family and God.

Six Years of Planting Not Required, Either

Once I realized the above, I knew the same applied to the Sabbath year commandment. What if an Israelite bought a field and did not have the money to plant it. Was he breaking the Torah in doing nothing with his field for six years? No. As long as he did not decide at last to plant in the 7th year when all Israel was keeping field fallow, then he was in compliance with the intent of this command. Failure to leave fields fallow causes agricultural yields to diminish eventually. Then farmers resort to unnatural means to coax the field into producing what it used to. Chemical fertilizers and pesticides. The people eating the food pay the price for that in their health through the modern diseases we have today (not that toxins and poorer nutrition from food is the only cause of disease).

The passage supports that the planting is optional during the six years. It says “may”, not “must”.

Leviticus 25:3 (HCSB) 3 You may sow your field for six years, and you may prune your vineyard and gather its produce for six years.

What About Six “Planting Optional Years” Before a Sabbath Year?

You still might wonder if a 49 year Jubilee year cycle does not at least break Scripture. Does not the Sabbath year have to follow six “planting-optional years?” Is that not the intent?

Once again, I believe we must think it through to get the true intent. The true intent is to establish a seven year cycle. The commandment names six years and one year. Six plus one equal seven. That’s a seven year cycle.

Now we must understand that commandments of the Torah can override each other. We see this with the Sabbath Day commandment. Jesus pointed out that the priestly duties were done on Sabbath, “profaning it” (Mt 12:5). This was their main work, yet they did it on Sabbath. They had a special case that overruled the general blanket command of ceasing from labor on Sabbath.

That is what is happening here with the the Jubilee command. It is overriding the detail that there are six years available for planting before a Sabbath year. It is saying that the first year of the 8th (15th, 22nd, 29th, etc.) Sabbath year cycle is not going to be for planting, but will be a special Jubilee of no planting (among other things) following the preceding Sabbath year of no planting making two years of no planting in a row.


The 49 year Jubilee cycle maintains the strict seven year cycle for Sabbath years just like the Torah gives for Sabbath days every seven days. The objection that having the Jubilee year be one of the six planting years of a Sabbath year cycle breaks Scripture does not hold. When you properly understand the intent and focus of the Sabbath year on preventing overwork of fields, you can see that it does not require planting in any year or for any number of years. The Sabbath year command simply forbids Israel to plant in the special seventh year, just as the Sabbath day command simply forbids Israel from working on Saturday.

Michael Rood Comes for an Unexpected Visit

Yesterday I posted to my Facebook that Michael Rood was coming to visit me at my home. I did so to give friends a chance to post questions they would like me to ask Michael. In response I had quite a few questions, some of which I was able to ask and will cover in this article.

My History With Michael Rood

I’ve known Michael Rood for ten years, almost as long as I have been living in Costa Rica. He came to Costa Rica in the Spring of 2000 and it was posted on his website (the old 6001.com). This was when he was on the Prophecy Club hosted by Stan Johnson and promoting his groundbreaking Spring and Fall Feasts of the LORD video tapes.

A bunch of us went to the hotel advertised for where he would have a get together and he never showed up. Not a great start to a great relationship. We missed him that time but we soon hooked up and invited him to stay at our home as he explored TV opportunities in Costa Rica.  He visited a few times in 2000 and 2001 and even wrote some of the original A Rood Awakening TV script at our home.

In 2002, when he announced his first tour of Israel, we considered it. Katrina and I had never been to Israel and to go with someone who would take you to Gomorrah where you could mine your own brimstone was hard to resist. We put down the deposit and my employer promptly cut my hours and then laid me off completely. I was short $5000 for the trip and had no way of paying it. Yet Michael and his then partner Jamie decided to let us go anyway and pay the balance when we could afterward.

Needless to say, we had a blast for eleven days touring Israel with them. I met Nehemia Gordon and made some discoveries as a result of the tour that later ended up in my book (such as the Elijah insight).

After that we did not see too much of Michael as he was filming A Rood Awakening in Israel. He only came back to Costa Rica for a few short trips, never staying with us like in the early years. He now stays with a couple who have a car and plenty of room. (We did not and still do not own a car because of the higher expense to own and maintain a car in Costa Rica.)

In fact, this visit from him is the first one since his ministry problems a few years back.

Withholding Judgment

Not surprisingly a few Facebook friends had negative comments about Michael Rood to share. One expressed surprise at me having anything to do with him. Do I follow him or believe the way he did? This person elaborated:

I put Michael Rood in a whole different category. While not being judgmental I feel it is important before you believe, follow ones teachings, or just read and study their materials you need to research this person. Their are many false prophets and teachers out there. I have serious reservations about Michael Rood.

I completely understand these sentiments and do not judge the person for feeling uncomfortable with Michael. I used to have similar ones for teachers, even including Michael himself when some of the events of recent years came out and hurt even my own friends and associates.

However, in recent years I have gained some perspective that helps me to embrace Michael for his good and the good he does and let go of the bad. We have had people live with us a lot in 2008 and 2009. If you have ever tried living with people for an extended period, you quickly have problems come up. Oftentimes you are the cause of the problem. If you are aware and teachable, you have to face the fact that you are not perfect and you do things that at best are less than effective and at worst annoying, insensitive or offensive to others.

From this, I see that I am really not much different than Michael or anyone else. We all are a mixed bag. We all have limited experience that leaves blind spots in our awareness leading us to make choices that hurt others. Yet nearly all the time, we are well-intentioned and feel justified in what we do. I have not asked Michael, but I have no doubt he felt justified in what he has done that has hurt others and feels justified in what he does and says today.

This is summed up in a quote I have heard from him a few times over the decade I have known him. He likes to say with a smile, “You know, I do not teach anything that I believe to be false….Think about that a minute.” In other words, people can accuse him of being a false prophet or leading people astray but in reality he is only teaching what he is sincerely convicted of from his personal diligent study. I can relate to that as I do the same thing. Yet every time I send out a newsletter, I get unsubscribe notifications with comments accusing me of purposely misleading people. People do not have the experience needed to realize that yes people can come to different conclusions on the Bible than they have and yet be good sincere diligent truth seekers like themselves. The Bible is just that way (on purpose, as I cover in my book).

So because of this perspective, I accept Michael Rood for Michael Rood. I do not agree with everything he teaches nor everything he does. To quote another face book friend, Jason Vick of www.JewsAndJoes.com, who expressed it well:: “I think most everyone puts Rood in a different category. Personally, I like him… even though I don’t agree with everything he teaches… nor everything he has done in his past.”

By the same token, I do not censor him completely just because he has said or done things I disagree with.

And, by the way, some might be happy or surprised to know that Michael Rood has been reaching out to reconcile with the people he has had his public controversy with. He has apologized to a friend of mine and now they are going to work together again in the future on A Rood Awakening, a definitely mutually beneficial reconciliation and relationship.

I hope my comments can help some of you to withhold judgment on our brothers just as Jesus/Yeshua said. We do not know what is in their heart and usually we do not know all the facts, or even both sides of the story. Someone like Michael Rood who goes out every day trying to wake people up from their religious trance cannot be all bad. He is still learning and always has a much to share that I find worth listening to, ten years later.

Now on to the questions and answers promised.

Questions and Answers to Michael Rood

Here are the questions I asked Michael Rood:

  • Q. Is The 2010-2017 Timeline Still Viable?
    A. His answer was that he has not ruled it out yet, however he reminded me that there is something yet missing for it to happen: global economic collapse. See, just as I teach, he does not see the attack on Israel that results in Damascus getting nuked being able to happen the way things are today. He believes that America has to be neutralized from being able to help Israel, leaving her isolated. Seeing this, the Arabs would have an opening to attack and fulfill Zechariah 12, Isaiah 34, and other parallel prophecies.
  • Q. Is Damascus’ Destruction Expected This Fall?
    A. I did not get to ask him this directly, but what he said was “Damascus could be nuked as early as nine months from now”. He is referring to a fulfillment in the Hebrew month of Tishrei, 2010, which is the month the 70th Week of Daniel begins (and ends, seven years later). This is what he calls the Confirmation of the Covenant. He has been waiting for this event to kick off the final seven years for as long as I have known him. Thus, the answer is that Damascus’ doom is not “expected” as much as it is “possible”. I presume he would expect it only if a global economic collapse happened this spring or summer.

Michael Rood’s Wheelchair Debility…and Recovery

Some of you may have seen that in recently years Michael Rood has been sick and even in a wheel chair. That is all we knew ourselves due to our lack of contact. Yesterday we finally heard the skinny on his illness.

It started with his trip to Rwanda. After coming back he started to have problems with pain in one leg. He had to pile on ice to keep the pain down in his hotel room. Next he had to be in a wheel chair. He was meeting people later with the same symptoms that was labeled as “Gulf War Syndrome.” The problem was that none of them including Michael had been in the Gulf War!

Then he kept seeing families with autistic children who last time he saw them the kids were fine. In each case, the children went bad right after vaccinations. Then Michael remembered that he himself had just had vaccinations for a recent trip to Rwanda that preceded his whole health decline.

Long story short, he found an amazing doctor (with a great story of his own) who specialized in conditions like Michael’s. He put him on a special detox program at the beach of (disgusting tasting) green vegetable juices for chelation, steam baths for sweating out toxins and other things I cannot recall. Over a long period of weeks and months he gradually got better. Today he is almost fully recovered. He expressed the intent to go back and detox more to finish his recovery. (I will try to get more details on this detox program because I know it is of interest to many.)

It will not surprise readers that he does not approve of the swine flu/h1n1 vaccination. He related stories he had heard of pregnant women having dead babies taken out of them after receiving the h1n1 vaccine.


Needless to say, Katrina and I enjoyed our visit. We honestly did not expect him to ask to see us this time with how busy his schedule usually is. That felt very nice. He shared some great insights as you can see. I look forward to seeing Michael again and helping each other in our passion for teaching the truth (as we understand it) to truth seekers like you my readers.

Mark of the Beast: Literal or Sunday Worship?

Why People Fail to Understand Revelation (or the Bible)

When I was younger, I struggled to understand the Book of Revelation. It was so fascinating that I longed to crack its sealed language. But I could not, and nobody could help me.

Today, I do understand it much, much better and now know why I failed to understand before. I had not learned back then that most of the Bible is more literal than we ever imagined. To read literal passages allegorically will lead you to wrong conclusions every time.

But it gets worse. These wrong conclusions will cloud your understanding of still other passages, kind of like a spreading infection. The false views you hold constantly contradict any true interpretations you think of or come across. Because you view truths as wrong, you reject or disregard them. As a result, you are unable to truly understand any of the deeper teachings or mysteries of the Bible properly. This includes the mysterious Book of Revelation.

The Mark of Beast and the Mark of Torah

Revelation’s Mark of the Beast is a good and instructive example in this regard.

Revelation 13:16-17 (HCSB) 16 And he requires everyone—small and great, rich and poor, free and slave—to be given a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, 17 so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark: the beast’s name or the number of his name.

This seems straightforward. A mark consisting of a name or number on either your forehead or right hand. The mark will serve kind of like a credit card does today. Without it you cannot buy or sell everything you want. For example, you cannot rent a car or good hotel room without a credit card.

However, how does your view of Revelation 13’s mark change when you incorporate these verses:

Exodus 13:9 (HCSB) Let it serve as a sign for you on your hand and as a reminder on your forehead, so that the Lord’s instruction may be in your mouth; for the Lord brought you out of Egypt with a strong hand.

Deuteronomy 6:8 (HCSB) Bind them as a sign on your hand and let them be a symbol on your forehead.

It is because of these commands that Orthodox Jews put phylacteries or little Torah scroll boxes and straps on their forehead and hands. That’s a literal interpretation. Yet, most instead see this verse as an injunction by God to make his instructions tied to your thought and your actions always.

Mark of the Beast: Spiritual Mark?

Don’t these verses sound similar to Revelation? They associate God’s commands with the forehead and hand. This can cause you to question your literal view of Revelation’s mark. Perhaps it is not a literal mark, but it is a spiritual mark. Perhaps the mark really represents obeying the commands of the Beast in place of God’s commands?

At least that’s what the Seventh Day Adventist church teaches. They consider the mark of the beast to be symbolic. The symbolic meaning to them is a law to keep Sunday, or “Sunday Law”. Of course, they are the biggest Christian group that believes we are required to keep a Saturday Sabbath. They believe keeping Sunday instead of Sabbath is a  serious sin before God.

The SDA interpretation looks reasonable especially with its “let the Bible interpret the Bible” methodology. Yet we will see that it is no accident they spiritualize the mark as they do. Their Sabbath view helps them to gloss over some important differences between the marks of Revelation and Exodus.

Mark of the Beast: Literal Mark

Here’s the main problem with equating Exodus 13:9 with Revelation 13:16. Exodus is taking an abstract thing (God’s instructions) and asking them to be “frontlets,” a “sign” or a “memorial” between the eyes and the hand. The most reasonable way to view this is figuratively as a command to always think and do according to God’s instructions. It is not practical or useful to fit a tiny Torah scroll on those body parts and go around with them in the way all the time.

Revelation, on the other hand, is taking a physical thing (a mark on the skin) and specifying where it can be located on the body. Indeed, all incidences of “mark” in the contexts of Revelation treat it as a physical and visible thing that you receive from the False Prophet. Visibility is required for the mark to work in commerce. One cannot look at you and tell if you kept Sunday when deciding whether to sell you food.

Notice also that Exodus 13:9 does not says “right” hand. Exodus does not specify which hand because it would be odd to do this when either hand is associated with work or action.

Further, in Revelation the mark is always a “mark” on the skin. It is not sometimes a sign, a frontlet, or a “mark” like God’s commandments are characterized by the Torah itself. Revelation 13 even specifies the mark as the name or number of the beast. Names and numbers are commonly written down. They would even fit on a person’s forehead or skin. The definition of the mark as the name or number of the Beast hurts the SDA view. This plain explanation of the mark contradicts assigning any other explanation to it. Their case would be better if the mark was left ambiguous by Revelation. But it is not.

Thus, when we allegorize the mark as “deciding to rest on Sunday instead of Saturday,” we are choosing to ignore the most natural and reasonable interpretation of the mark of the beast. The mark is defined as a mark on the skin consisting of the name or number of the beast.

So why choose to allegorize a text that makes perfect sense naturally as written? There must be some other benefit to choosing a less-defensible interpretation. For SDA’s this “Sunday mark” theory supports their Sabbath day doctrine. It puts additional importance and fear behind their teaching that we must and should keep Sabbath. I can imagine them thinking that by keeping Sabbath today, they are antichrist-proofing themselves later.


Only a Sabbath-keeping religion would come up with the idea that the mark of the beast will be “keeping Sunday instead of Saturday.” This interpretation presupposes that Sabbath is required by God and by not keeping it you are sinning before God. However, the Sabbath was part of the Old Covenant made with the nation of Ancient Israel. SDAs rip this single command out of its original national context and transplant it upon believers today scattered outside the land of the Torah. Ignoring the context of a verse is not the way to to get to “the truth no matter what it says”, as our goal should be.

This goes back to my original point. When you have even one wrong doctrine (e.g. “Sabbath is required”), it will lead you to reject the true meanings of other verses (e.g. the mark is the name or number of the beast) and create even more wrong doctrines (e.g. “the mark is keeping Sunday”). And all of these errors are based on not accepting the Bible for what it plainly says (e.g. the Torah is for the nation of Israel in the land of Israel, not for Gentiles today – Acts 15).

In covering this example, I have not meant to pick on the SDAs. Other groups come up with other meanings that break the literalness of the mark of the beast, too. Indeed, we all fall into allegorizing verses that were meant literally. Hopefully, the next time you catch yourself thinking a verse does not mean what it plainly says you will stop and ask yourself two questions.

  1. What doctrine do I hold that is causing me to think this verse is not literal?
  2. Have I proven through diligent study that that doctrine itself is really correct?

See also: Can you Take the Mark of the Beast Today?

See also: What is the Seal of the 144,000?

“Pray that your flight not be…on the Sabbath day”?

A reader of my book asked me this very good question that many Christians wonder about when reading Matthew’s version of the Olivet Discourse:

IF the Sabbath is no long in effect (Acts 15) how do we file away this:
Matthew 24:20 – But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day:

Is this a Hint for Christians To Keep Sabbath?

Some Christians find Jesus’ mention of the Sabbath in this passage disturbing. It almost seems to be advising us to be careful to avoid trampling the Sabbath.  For Christians, the Sabbath is a command they associate with the lost legalistic Pharisees of Jesus’ day and the non-believing Orthodox Jews today. Therefore the statement is problematic for them.

On the other hand, Sabbath-keeping Christians often cite this verse as proof of their position that God expects all believers to rest on Sabbath today. “Why would Jesus tell us to pray to not have to leave on the Sabbath unless it was still a day of rest for all believers?” they ask.

Well, that’s an excellent question. They probably are not going to like hearing what the most likely answer is. Yet most Christians will be glad to see how this verse’s plain meaning is in harmony with the rest of the Bible. The exercise will illustrate how many of these verses are best resolved through attention to grammatical, historical and whole Bible context.

Here’s the problem with the common interpretation of this verse. Under the Old Covenant Torah, there was no prohibition against fleeing or even fighting for your life on Sabbath. The only requirement given in the Torah after Israel had entered the land was to rest from your occupational work. (When they were still in tents wandering for 40 years, they had the additional requirement of not even leaving their place; probably only to not be tempted to gather manna – Ex 16:29. See Dt 23:12-13). Therefore, the mention of the Sabbath day causing hardship has nothing to do with believers keeping Sabbath or Sabbath forbidding travel.

A More Probable and Congruent Meaning

To understand the statement, we have to understand what it meant to Jesus’ audience who he spoke it to. In Jesus’ day, their culture was to keep Sabbath. They did this not because it was required by the Old Covenant. They had broken that already. Plus, when it was in effect, prophets continually warned Israel and Judah to stop trampling on it. Yet, those prophets and their warnings ceased with the exile of Israel and Judah (similar to how the shekinah glory left the temple then in Ezekiel 10:18). Instead, they were keeping it as part of their cultural tradition and religion of Judaism that developed out of the Babylon exile. You are probably familiar with some of the many things Orthodox Judaism prohibits on Sabbath, such as ripping toilet paper, carrying money, or turning on a light switch.

They had such embellishments back in Jesus’ day, too, which in several Gospel incidents Jesus is seen in conflict with them on. Examples include the washing of hands, healing or gleaning of grain in fields left for the poor on Sabbath.

They even had a “Sabbath’s day journey” limit on travel (referenced in Acts 1:12 as a distance measurement). Therefore, when Jesus mentioned avoiding Sabbath in the context of the prescribed speedy flight, Jesus’ audience knew immediately what he was talking about. Travel on Sabbath was already problematic back then with the cultural restrictions.

Today in the land of Israel, buses don’t run on Sabbath due to these same traditions. Mostly only Arab-run taxis are available. Therefore, it’s just plain harder to travel in Israel from Friday sunset until Saturday sunset today just as it was back in Jesus’ day. At least in the religious area of Jerusalem, or Judea this was true when I visited. Interestingly, this is the specific area Jesus said we would be gathered to and needing to flee from in the end times (Lk 21:21).

Notice the context as well. Sabbath day is mentioned along with winter and pregnant and nursing women. What do they all have in common? Winter means cold and potentially bad weather that requires more clothing and preparation. It makes travel harder. Being pregnant or having small children means you must go slower or carry a child and stop to nurse him. This obviously makes emergency last minute travel much harder and slower. All these things, like the Sabbath day, present obstacles to fast, unencumbered  travel on short notice as will be required. This was the whole point of the context of the Abomination of Desolation warnings. If someone does not listen to the warning ahead of time about what it coming and instead waits until he sees the event happen before his eyes (“I’ll believe it when I see  it”), then he will need to move so fast that he cannot even stop for supplies (Mt 24:15-20). If time is of the essence, then Sabbath day travel friction is a concern.

Other reputable commentaries agree this is likely the meaning:

What Christian Commentaries Say

New American Commentary on Matthew:

This reference to the Sabbath is found only in Matthew’s account. It would be natural for Matthew to include it for his more Jewish audience, but he does not thereby imply, as is often alleged, that he envisions Christians still keeping the Jewish laws. G. N. Stanton (“ ‘Pray That Your Flight May Not Be in Winter or on a Sabbath’ [Matthew 24.20],” JSNT 37 [1989]: 17–30) surveys the various options for interpreting this verse and concludes that the best approach understands that fleeing on the Sabbath would have antagonized the Jews further and increased persecution of believers.

MacArthur New Testament Commentary on Matthew:

Although Palestinian winters are mild compared to those in many parts of the world, even slightly inclement weather could be a hindrance when the Antichrist begins his final aggression against God’s people. Therefore Jesus said, Pray that your fight may not be in the winter.

Those seeking to escape should also pray that they will not have to flee on the Sabbath, when legalistic Jews who are not fleeing might try to stone or otherwise impede those whom they believe to be profaning the Sabbath—just as their forefathers had sought to stone Jesus for breaking their Sabbath traditions.

Jesus’ point was that no possession would be worth the risk of retrieving and no hindrance could be considered small. Because of the imminent unmatched terror, single-minded, undeterred flight will be the only order of the day.

Abomination Happens on A Sabbath in the Winter

What Jesus is implying by his suggestion to pray about the timing of your flight is that those who make the mistake of waiting until the last minute will literally see the Abomination happen on a Sabbath day in the Winter.

That may sound like an outrageous leap, but we can already confirm the Winter season for the abomination using Daniel. Daniel tells us that the Abomination of Desolation happens 1290 days from the end of the Tribulation. We know the rapture happens on the Feast of Trumpets right after the Tribulation (Mt 24:39-31). The Feast of Trumpets is on Tishrei 1, or first day of the 7th month. If you go back 1290 days or 43 months from that you end up in the 12th month of Adar. That’s the Winter!

Was Jesus also telling us ahead of time that the Abomination of Desolation would happen on a future Sabbath day? I think so.

Those who pray and have the faith to flee before they see the Abomination will probably flee before Winter gets bad. They can pick a time that is not on a Sabbath day as well and have an easier time. But to do this will take faith since it means leaving when everything seems fine to the eye.


Whenever we read a cryptic passage like this, we have to resist the temptation to jump to the conclusion that fits in with our doctrinal view. We have to put our bias aside and put on our detective’s hat. The Bible requires clear thinking and careful research. If we start with what the passage would have meant to the person saying it and also to his audience, we have a much better chance of arriving at the correct answer.

Note: If you think that by writing this article it means I do not keep Sabbath or am against keeping Sabbath, then that conclusion would be just as shaky as the one this article argued against. =) This article is not making a statement for or against keeping Sabbath. The point is only to correct a common case of taking a verses out of its context, masking its true intended meaning.

For the record, according to Isaiah 58 the Sabbath is a delight and blessing to keep whether it is required or not. Committing to resting one day a week recharges your batteries, relieves stress, gives space to reflect on the important things in life, and reconnect with your family. Those who can use more blessings from God in their life might optionally try resting on Sabbath. =)

The First Shall Be Last, the Last Shall Be First?

A reader asked what Jesus meant when he said “The first shall be last and the last shall be first”. It is a good question because this proverb is used several times by Jesus in the Gospels.  To properly understand his teaching, several such core concepts must be mastered, one at a time.

This proverb expresses a recurring theme in Jesus’ teaching of the counter-intuitive reversal of fortune that the Kingdom of God will deliver when it comes. There are three groups outlined by Jesus where this is demonstrated:

  1. Many Gentiles will achieve entrance in the Kingdom while large numbers of the chosen people of Israel do not enter. (Lk 13:28-30; Mt 20:1-16);
  2. Among Israel, the outcasts (tax collectors, sinners, and unlearned) would appear ahead of the religious (Pharisees, scribes, lawyers, priests, rich). (Mk 10:23-31; Mt 19:23-30; Luke 6:20; Luke 14:11)
  3. Those who suffer now will have comfort in the Kingdom but those who are rich and comfortable in this world will appear behind those who suffer now. (Lk 16:19-31)

The parable of “Lazarus and the Rich Man” (Lk 16:19-31) expresses this last point grandly, although most completely misread the parable as a complete and accurate depiction of life after death (which it is not; come on, burning in hell and wanting water for your tongue?). Most Christians completely miss that Jesus was drawing upon common Egyptian and Jewish concepts on the afterlife in order to make an important point on the Kingdom. He was not teaching us that we burn in hell when we die. All other teachings in the Bible on the afterlife contradict that conclusion.

The point he was making is again the reversal of fortunes and how what we should seek now is counter-intuitive or not what we naturally seek. This reversal does not even depend on righteousness vs. wickedness. Lazarus is not said to be a righteous man nor is the rich man called a sinner. Instead, one had suffering and the other comfort, respectively. After they both die, their situation is reversed in the next life. Lazarus is seen reclining with Abraham in the kingdom and the rich man is seen suffering outside in the common humanistic vision of a hell (not in a theologically correct unconscious separation from God – Ecc 9:5) .

Jesus is warning us through this parable and his saying “the first shall be last, and the last shall be first” that it does not matter who we are. No special favor is afforded by birth. We must seek the right things in this world, things that are counter-intuitive, so that in the next life, which is forever, we will benefit. These “riches in heaven” are won by seeking first the kingdom and his righteousness in this world (Mt 8:28). And many groups who you would think today have a corner on these riches, in reality will be nowhere to be seen in the Kingdom of God.

Can We Take “The LORD’s Name In Vain” Today?

My posts always bring interesting and unexpected responses from readers even when I think they are not controversial. The previous one on the 2012 movie was no different. Here’s the very first reply I received from a reader:

I just received your article about 2012.  I hope you are not recommending the movie.  I read the reviews and that was enough for me.

The Lord’s name is used in vain, 20 times. I cannot imagine that He would want me to go, pay money, and then sit and listen to this.

I don’t mean to sound harsh, I am just soooooooo sick of Christians spending (wasting) their time on such as this.

I too would love to see a good end time movie, but unfortunately the enemy uses them to dull our senses and jade us.

I think this reader is overlooking the ability of movies like this to do the opposite of jading us against end times concerns. Doomsday movies get people contemplating the end of the world, end time prophecy and eventually the Bible. Ironically, even Christians need whatever help they can get to motivate them to finally read the entire Bible (as the statistic that only 5% have done so confirms). In the new My Testimony chapter of my book‘s 7th edition, I recount how the movie The Omen lead a good Catholic boy like me to open the Bible for the first time at age nine. Any movie that can motivate people to open up their Bibles is not a waste of time, in my book.

2012 Uses The LORD’s Name In Vain 20 Times”?

But in this article I want to focus on just one argument the reader makes against the 2012 movie; the claim that the movie breaks the Third Commandment twenty times. It is an interesting story as to why I disagree with that complaint.

I have recounted many times how gaining a major new Bible insight will often cause a domino effect with other understandings you have. This stands to reason because none of us understand the Bible 100% correctly, including myself. We either completely forget or ignore verses that would contradict what we believe or we misunderstand the verses we are aware of.

A great example of this is what happens when you learn about the sacred name. As I covered in my article on sacred names, I found out years ago that God’s name is not LORD or God but a specific four letter name that occurs 6,828 times in the Old Testament. This understanding then lead to a quick and easy proof for discerning (Christian) false prophets.

The Christian understanding of everyday breaking of the Third Commandment also topples once you understand the truth about God’s name. A reader of my sacred name article yesterday asked a question that hints at it:

Do you think this (using any name that we choose) has any thing to do with the 3rd commandment re: taking the name in vain?

may YAHUWAH have mercy on us all, stephanie

Her question refers to the fact that we do not know God’s name for sure so we must all decide what reasonable facsimile we think is closest from our own diligent research. The answer to the question is absolutely not. And as a result, I will show that God’s name is taken zero times in 2012.

What Exactly is “Taking the LORD’s Name in Vain”?

Exodus 20:7 — You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.

People today have the idea that saying phrases such as “Jesus Christ!” or “God d*** it!” or other cursing involving Jesus or God in some way is what this commandment is talking about. It is not. To find the correct understanding on the Third Commandment, you must understand it in the context of the Torah given to Ancient Israel which the Ten Commandments are part of.

As my previous article on sacred names explains, Israel was taught God’s actual four letter name, YHWH pronounced something like “Yehovah” (Jehovah is the old English spelling of this when the J was pronounced like Y). They used God’s name for praising (Ps 100:4), blessing (Num 6:23) and even in greeting (Ruth 2:4). The Third Commandment only refers to this word, Yehovah. It does not refer to Yehovah’s titles like “Lord” or “God” or his son’s name (which by the way is not “Jesus Christ” as is used in 2012, anyway. See how the Messiah’s original Hebrew name became mangled as “Jesus”).

We can be sure this is what the Third Commandment is about because Israel was actually commanded to make oaths using God’s name Yehovah exclusively (Dt 6:13).

Dt 6:13 (HCSB) — Fear Yahweh your God, worship Him, and take ⌊your⌋ oaths in His name [Yahweh is a common scholarly best guess of how to pronounce YHWH].

If they did not fulfill their oaths or vows, it was considered swearing falsely and profaning God’s name (Lev 19:12). Once you understand that you can then can see the true meaning of the Third Commandment. For example, here’s what just two commentaries have to say about it:

third commandment. As the second commandment concerned the issue of exercising power over God, the third turns its attention to exercising God’s power over others. This commandment does not refer to blasphemy or foul language. Rather it is intended to prevent the exploitation of the name of Yahweh for magical purposes or hexing. It also continues the concerns of the second commandment in that someone’s name was believed to be intimately connected to that person’s being and essence. The giving of one’s name was an act of favor, trust and, in human terms, vulnerability. Israel was not to attempt to use Yahweh’s name in magical ways to manipulate him. The commandment was also intended to insure that the use of Yahweh’s name in oaths, vows and treaties was taken seriously. — The IVP Bible Background Commentary on Ex 20:7

Taking the Lord’s name in vain (see note on Deut. 5:11) refers primarily to someone taking a deceptive oath in God’s name or invoking God’s name to sanction an act in which the person is being dishonest (Lev. 19:12). It also bans using God’s name in magic, or irreverently, or disrespectfully (Lev. 24:10-16). The Lord revealed his name to Moses (Ex. 3:14-15), and he has continued to identify himself in connection with his acts on Israel’s behalf (see 6:2, 6-8). Yahweh is warning Israel against using his name as if it were disconnected from his person, presence, and power. — ESV Study Bible on Ex 20:7

Conclusion – Today Nobody Can Really Do It

As the Third Commandment was uniquely given to Ancient Israel in the context of other commands on using God’s name, we must realize that it does not directly apply to us today. Today we are scattered believers mostly outside the land of Israel where the Torah applied. We are a different audience in a different situation and it is improper to take all these commands meant for someone else in a different jurisdiction from the distant past and apply them to ourselves.

(Of course, this reasoning does not apply to all Ten Commandments. Most of them are not unique to Israel as they were given earlier to all men.  They are merely repeated in the Torah. For example, whether the Torah applies to us or not, none of us should murder because that moral standard was given in the beginning to Adam. None of us need God to tell us not to steal, commit adultery or bear false witness because other people, society and government will quickly object to that behavior as immoral or unethical.)

There is another major problem with enforcing the Third Commandment today. As my article on the sacred name covered, today there is no prophet like Moses teaching and using God’s name. As a result, nobody knows what God’s name is for sure, or at least how to pronounce it exactly so you can use it. Further, Jesus never reiterated the Third Commandment in his teachings nor left believers any other injunction to use God’s name. (Some would even say he told us not to swear at all citing Matthew 5:34. However, the Hebrew Matthew may preserve a more original reading of Jesus’ words that does not contradict the Torah on this point. For details see Nehemia Gordon’s The Hebrew Yeshua vs. the Greek Jesus.)

Once you realize this, it changes your whole perspective on people saying “Jesus Christ” or other similar curses. That is not God’s name, let alone the Messiah’s. If you do not know what God’s name is for sure, and you are not even told to use it, then it is impossible to use it improperly or otherwise. It would be like someone accusing you of running a red light in Israel when you do not even drive nor live in Israel (which may seem like a contrived example, but perfectly describes myself. I have not owned a car for many years and instead use my bike daily in Costa Rica to get around).

Therefore, it no longer offends me to hear people swear with the words “God”, “Jesus Christ”, or “LORD” anymore than other swearing does. I realize now that these people are not breaking the Third Commandment in my presence and I am not complicit to some sin if I do not rebuke them or do not boycott a movie with such language. I still of course do not endorse the use of any profanities (and must always exercise self-control myself when angry in this regard).

I look forward to the day when the Messiah returns and we are all taught to both use and properly swear by (meaning take oaths and vows) God’s exact, actual, glorious, set apart name.

Mandatory H1N1 Vaccine Rumors Dispelled

A reader asked:

I have heard about a mandatory H1N1 vaccine that the US is going to force us to take the vaccine or go to a concentration camp. Have you heard about this? It is supposedly going to start as soon as October 15, 2009. If you have heard anything or have any advise I would greatly appreciate your response.

There are always rumors like this about draconian laws coming or concentration camps for resistors. I’ve heard and watched these fables come and go for years.

You know what I’ve found? They never come to pass.

Why Unsubstantiated Rumors Should Be Ignored

I can think of three reasons why:

  1. Most often they were just unfounded or false rumors. There is a good reason mainstream news sites do not carry such stories. They cannot be verified. This of itself does not make them false, but most unverifiable stories do turn out this way.
  2. Perhaps a few rumors are based on actual plans of the enemy which failed as most plans men make up do.
  3. Finally some may have been real plans and had a real chance but they contradicted God’s master plan. Of course, God is sovereign and his plans never fail.

Discernment 101

In hindsight, most of the above may seem like common sense, even academic. But common sense is not always very common.

I confess it took me a few years to experience this pattern before I recognized it myself. We all have to learn most of our discernment the hard way, by experience. We must fall for a few con-men, erroneous ideas, false prophets, and false prophecies before we start to see that generally if it sounds too good to be true (or too bad to be true) it usually is. Or if too few people are saying something, it generally is false. (With the Bible this turns out to be the opposite:  most of what is popularly taught from the Bible is in error, due to how the Bible was written)

The next time you hear an extreme rumor like this, I hope you treat it as it deserves. As an unsubstantiated rumor.

Is Obama the Antichrist
(or Even A Natural-Born American Citizen)?

Believing the Impossible

Last month I attended and spoke at my first Bible conference keynote. (Previously I had spoken at Borland Conferences during my previous career as a programmer). While researching for my keynote, I happened upon a profound quote:

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s mind there are few”—Shunryu Suzuki.

As an expert on Bible prophecy, I can attest to the applicability of that principle in my field. I constantly hear beginners pose Bible prophecy theories that are frankly impossible. Usually there is a clear and plain verse that nullifies the beginner’s theory. One clear verse is all that it takes because of the principle Jesus taught that “the Scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35). We are not to believe a doctrine that would contradict the Bible. The Bible is a big difficult book that takes years to become expertly familiar with so false doctrines are commonly passed around and accepted.

Barrack Obama Antichrist Rumors

Case in point: is Obama the Antichrist? Lately, this is the question I receive most frequently since he became President of the United States.

Besides questions, I receive plenty of emails from people trying to convince me that Obama is the Antichrist. I think people send them because of the article on my website that uses Revelation 13 to identify someone else as the Antichrist. Obama Antichrist theorists naturally view the article as wrong and just have to correct me. One person even told me to take the article down so people are not “mislead” by it.

The article is still up even though I admit it is possible that the suggested candidate is wrong. We just will not know he is wrong until that person dies or the real Antichrist appears, whichever comes first. In the meantime discussion on the topic is good and one of the best ways to get people to actually study the Bible for themselves.

As for Barrack Obama, we can disqualify him as an Antichrist candidate today. This theory is about as valid as the common Christian belief that “Jesus can come back at any moment” (the secret pretrib rapture). To the beginner both theories seem possible. An expert can tell you that both theories are contradicted by plain clear Scripture. Barrack Obama does not fulfill a single major identification requirement for the Antichrist, especially not from Revelation 13.

Moreover, he cannot possibly be the Antichrist because he is a national of the wrong country. As I have covered in my free newsletter (simply email eatt-news@aweber.com to sign up), Daniel 9:26 tells us the nationality of the Antichrist is the same as those who destroyed the Temple in 70 AD: the people of the Roman Empire. The New American Commentary – Volume 18: Daniel 9:26 on page 267 confirms this is the meaning:

The “people” who would destroy Jerusalem and the temple were the Romans, but v. 27 makes clear that this “ruler” will be the future persecutor of Israel during the seventieth seven. “The people of the ruler” does not mean that the people “belong to” the ruler but rather that the ruler will come from these people. If the text is to be taken literally at this point, this future ruler will come out of the peoples and nations that made up the ancient Roman Empire. Daniel already had divulged in chap. 7 that the Antichrist’s origin will be from the fourth empire, Rome.

The country that Obama is from and rules did not even exist as country until 1700 years later. Therefore, a US Citizen cannot be the Antichrist because they are from a country that was not part of the Roman Empire who destroyed the Temple.

Proving Rumors With Conspiracy Theories

When I tell this to Obama Antichrist proponents, they usually ignore the evidence and invoke the “birther” conspiracy theory you may have heard in the news. It states “Obama was not born in the USA”. I suppose one wild theory deserves another to back it up. Anyone who would believe the first could easily entertain the second.
But even if this argument were true, it would make no difference because Daniel’s prophecy was not referring to the nation the Antichrist comes from. He was referring to what nation he is from. Making Obama a Kenyan does not help since Kenya was not part of the Roman Empire either.

Let’s be reasonable. If it were true that Obama was not qualified to be president, then the McCain campaign would have pounced on this Anyone who was willing to make the risky move of choosing Sarah Palin for vice president certainly would have used this angle if it had any solid evidence behind it. In fact, it recently came out that the McCain campaign did investigate this angle before the election. They found it to be unsubstantiated and the proof of Obama’s birth in Hawaii to be well-documented.

If only believers would consistently do likewise: investigate theories in the Bible themselves and only believe what is well-supported there. We would have a very different set of doctrines taught and widely believed if so. And we would have a lot more Bereans (Acts 17:11) than we do now.

Hope This Helps

Am I down on people who fail to do this and entertain or spread these weak Bible theories? Not at all. I remember some of the crazy doctrines I used to entertain when I was a beginner and had not learned clear thinking skills yet. I write what I do here to help those who want the truth and need a little help finding it just like I did when I was still a beginner. Although I am now an expert, I keep learning to grow in grace and knowledge and correct my own errors.

Here are more articles debunking Obama Birther and Antichrist conspiracy theories from Snopes.com. (BTW, Snopes is a great site to check before forwarding “Obama is the Antichrist”-type emails to avoid the embarassment when it turns out to be false as they usually do.)