Another June 7th has come and gone. Yesterday, June 7, 2017, was the fiftieth anniversary – by Gentile calendar reckoning – that Israeli army units captured the Old City of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. It’s amazing that half a century has gone by. Where has the time gone?
I can remember the adults around me at our church seeing this event as a major fulfillment of prophecy; the end times was here it seemed and the Rapture was next. How exciting that was!
This event in June 1967 launched a new prophecy industry headed by people like Hal Lindsey. The Roman Antichrist model was made popular again (it had been around for eighteen centuries). And why not? It really was the only prophetic model outside of Preterism. In The Late Great Planet Earth, on p. 55 , it says one more event must happen and that is the building of the Third Temple. This is true, but it has not happened yet.
In fact, its been fifty years and no Temple, and, nothing has happened.
Think about it – what else has happened in the old prophecy models – that is a direct fulfillment or seen as development directly supporting a fulfillment? The EU surpassing ten nations is one. Anything else? I can’t think of any. (The desert blooming in Isaiah 35:1 doesn’t count because it specifically says the Arabah will blossom, which is in Jordan, and in any case, other places in the Israeli Negev were blooming before 1967.)
Fifty Years of Practically Nothing With The Roman Antichrist Model
So it hit me just this week – it’s been 50 years since 1967. There’s been a lot of nothing. Where is the European Antichrist? The temple? Some might ask, “Mark, what do you mean nothing has happened since?” My answer is, point to one thing – one thing – in Bible end time prophecy that has been specifically fulfilled after Israel took the Temple Mount (aside from the EU).
With the possible exception of the EU having reached ten nations in 1981 – 38 years ago – there is nothing prophecy teachers can honestly point to as fulfillment of any Bible end time prophecy.
Having studied Lindsey’s work as a teenager, it was 34 years from 1967, 16 years ago, that God used the terrible event of 9/11 to knock some sense into me, that the prophecy model wasn’t working. I started my journey to discover the Signposts by asking God, “What’s going on?”
The crickets are still chirping in Europe. And now Brexit seems to be starting the undoing of the EU.
You cannot say the battles between Israel and the surrounding peoples in 1973 and the 1980’s counts, or the 2000’s intifadas. There is nothing specific in Scripture about those. Psalm 83 doesn’t qualify either. Past battles don’t match that Psalm. If you are a student of the Roman Antichrist model, you cannot tell me anything specific about Iran, about ISIS, about Turkey – only hints and possibilities that one day they will all attack Israel together. There is no specific sign at this time they are going to attack Israel. The supreme leader, the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, Erdoğan, and many other facets of the Middle East are noise to you. Israel even gave control of the Temple Mount back to the Muslims!
In other words, if you ask the old prophecy school for any specific signs, the old model of interpretation can only give you blank stares. They will point to new policies in the Euro or maybe some flashy new prime minister like Tsipras of Greece and say, “Look that must be the Antichrist!” But these are not solid signs either.
Old Model can only point to Israel’s earlier history
Sure, the Jewish people came back to the land of Israel starting around 1890, settled in the land, and created a political nation in 1948; those are fulfillments of Ezekiel 37, the prophecy of the valley of the dry bones. And though there is no specific prophecy saying Israel would conquer the Temple Mount, it is clear from Daniel 9:27 and Matthew 24:20, that Israel will have its temple rebuilt and so retaking the construction site was indeed a good first step.
Perhaps the dearth of prophetic events has been making Christians expect something to happen. This might be why things have been invented – like the Nephilim in the end times, and clinging to old theories that were turned into gospel (the Amplified Bible added “Rome” to Daniel 2:40) before the time God’s word says we are to know the real end times. No disrespect intended towards Dr. Jeremiah, but a book he wrote recently was titled, “What In The World Is Going On?” That title seems to say it all in regards to the old model.
Enter the Signposts
For me, two planes being flown into the World Trade Center was enough to trigger me to ask God for wisdom because it made me realize there was something seriously wrong with our eighteen-century old way of thinking. This was the starting point to discovering the Signposts.
So how much better is the Signpost model in seeing fulfilled or fulfilling prophecy? Below are two lists, one for the Roman Antichrist model, and one for the Signposts model, of all the fulfilled prophecy passages (labeled “FULFILLED”), or those passages where we have solid signs that fulfillment is in progress (labeled “ONGOING”).
OLD ROMAN ANTICHRIST MODEL (2 possible fulfillments)
- Dan. 9:27, Matt. 24:15 – Abomination set up in temple area;
– ONGOING – Israeli army conquers the place where the temple will be built;
- Rev. 17:12, Dan. 7:24 – Ten kings will rule with the Antichrist
– ONGOING – European Union attained tenth member with Greece in 1981, now has 28 members, but Britain now exiting;
FOUR SIGNPOSTS (12 possible fulfillments)
- Dan. 9:27, Matt. 24:15 – Abomination set up in temple area (the Signpost model supports the Israeli capture of the Temple Mount as fulfillment);
– ONGOING – Israeli army conquers the place where the temple will be built;
(The following eleven points are all explained in detail in Daniel Revisited, chapters 9-11.)
- Rev 6:2 – First rider had a crown
– FULFILLED – Saddam got his crown, July 1979
- Rev 6:2 – First rider bent on conquest, riding out “as” a conqueror
– FULFILLED – Saddam bent on conquest going out “as” a conqueror; not a real conqueror since he didn’t hang on to either conquest, Iran in September 1980, and Kuwait in August 1990;
- Rev 6:2 – First rider held a bow with no mention of arrows
– FULFILLED – Saddam brandishes his launching capability with no real knowledge among the western powers answering whether there were any missiles, 1990s;
- Dan 7:4 – First beast was a lion
– FULFILLED – Iraq acts like a lion in its warfare and attacks other countries going after single prey with long periods of time between attacks, 1980-2003;
- Dan 7:4 – Lion’s mind changed and forced to stand
– FULFILLED – Beastly government of modern Babylon (Iraq) made more civilized, converted from brutal dictatorship to democracy, 2003-2005;
- Dan. 8:3 – Two-horned ram stands near citadel of Susa, and horns are long
– FULFILLED – First long horn of ram, supreme leader, established, April 1979;
- Dan. 8:3 – Second horn of ram grows longer, and later
– FULFILLED – IRGC grows from bodyguard to power that runs Iran, 1979-present;
- Dan. 8:4 – Ram will run out to north, south, west
– ONGOING – Iran’s military buildup including nuclear bomb program allowed to proceed, consistent with prediction Iran will invade much of the Middle East, looking more and more like Iran will be great aggressor, 2005-present;
- Dan. 8:5 – Goat with prominent horn, king of Yavan to appear
– ONGOING – Leading candidate for goat’s horn is the megalomaniacal leader Erdoğan, by far the most popular and charismatic politician in Turkey since Ataturk the founder, 2003-present;
- Dan. 8:6 – Goat will charge in a great rage
– ONGOING – One of Erdoğan’s trademarks is his rage that sparks at smaller provocations;
- Dan. 7:6 – Four-headed leopard to be given authority to rule
– ONGOING – Future leopard preparing; Turkey allies with Albania, embraces Egypt while Morsi in power, opposes Assad in Syria, 2003-present.
So there we have it – one model with two “ONGOING” versus the other model with seven “FULFILLED” and five “ONGOING”. The “score” if one was being kept is Roman Antichrist – 2, The Signposts – 12.
The church, hanging on to the old Roman Antichrist model, would be excited if even a third solid fulfillment appeared. And I’ve seen many teachers point again and again to the European Union, which is only the second fulfillment. I believe teachings on aliens, nephilim, most teachings on Mystery Babylon, and many other topics are synthesized and created to satisfy the need of people who saw the Six-Day War FIFTY years ago, and believe we have been in the end times since then, and therefore something must be happening.
What do you think might be the probability that the Signposts might be real, more so than the Roman Antichrist model, having fulfilled or potentially fulfilled twelve places in Scripture versus two?
Jesus Christ of Nazareth was the fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecies of the coming Messiah. When he appeared were there few or many prophecies fulfilled?
Ask your pastors, elders, or fellow prophecy students, “How many specific fulfillments or ongoing fulfillments have there been since 1967?” See how many people say the EU.
(Here is one interesting tidbit – on the exact fiftieth anniversary of 1967, IS strikes Iran, and the people who know the Signpost model who are watching see how this might further incite Iran to do what Daniel 8 says it will do.)
I am tempted to say that any person or scenario that is a potential to fulfill Bible prophecy, assuming the data of the person or scenario is accurate, with the more points in prophecy fulfilled or potentially fulfilled, the more likely it will develop as a true fulfillment.
[Note: I may be wrong about this and I welcome anyone who can point out another fulfillment or support of one, using the Roman Antichrist viewpoint or the Signpost viewpoint. Let’s see if the “score” changes.]
In the big picture, we will see. The big test of the Signposts is still to come – Iran invading the Middle East in just the way as Daniel 8 says it will. But it looks very encouraging so far.