The difference between a Biblical prophet and any other is whether EVERY prophecy comes true. No one but Biblical prophets have ever been 100% accurate. And Biblical prophets did not seek any visions; God gave them without a required ritual. False “prophets” have had to go into a trance or perform a ritual. This is clearly asking for knowledge from demons.
“Remember the former things, those of long ago; I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me. I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say: My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.”Isaiah 46:9-10Book of Daniel (written about 535 B.C.)
The image of four metals represented four world empires: Babylon (fell 539 B.C.4), Media-Persia (fell 330 B.C.5), Greece (fell 63 B.C.6), and Rome, with the last being split in two. This happened in the 4th century A.D., when it was split into East (Byzantium/Eastern Orthodox Church) and West (Rome/Roman Catholicism).2
The letter of Artaxerxes Longimanus giving Nehemiah the authority to rebuild Jerusalem (Neh. 2:4-8) was written exactly 483 years (69x7), to the day, before Jesus’ Triumphal Entry (details verified in book The Coming Prince by Sir Robert Anderson).1 The city (Jerusalem) was destroyed in A.D. 70 by the Roman emperor Titus, 600 years after Daniel’s prophecy.3
The following historical narrative7 describes the fulfilled prophecies of this section. When Alexander (the Great) died, his kingdom was divided into four parts and given to his generals, not to any of his relatives. The first “king of the south” was Ptolemy I; the one gaining power over him was Seleucus I of Syria. Berenice, the daughter of Ptolemy II, married Antiochus II, king of Syria, to bring harmony between the two nations, but the stratagem failed in a torrent of intrigue and murder. Ptolemy III, Berenice’s brother, attacked Seleucus Callinicus, returning to Egypt with captives and spoil.
Two years later Seleucus launched an unsuccessful attack against Egypt. His sons were more successful, especially Antiochus III. The tide of battle seesawed between the north and south. Antiochus III made a pact with Egypt, giving his daughter in marriage to Ptolemy V, but she defected to side with Egypt. When Antiochus III tried to conquer Greece, he was defeated by the Romans at Thermopylae and died in his own land. His successor, Seleucus Philopater, levied oppressive taxes on the glorious kingdom, Israel.
Then arose Antiochus Epiphanes, the vile man who gained the throne that belonged to his nephew. He murdered Onias, “the prince of the covenant”. He also made treaties with other nations, especially Egypt, “the king of the south”. Both the kings of Syria and of Egypt engaged in hypocritical and deceitful conferences. As Antiochus returned to his own land, he began to direct his hostility against Israel. When he marched again against Egypt, he was repulsed by the Romans (“ships of Cyprus”) near Alexandria. He turned his anger against Israel, discontinuing the daily sacrifices and erecting an idol in the sanctuary.
- Global Peace, Dave Hunt, p. 71
- ibid., p. 68
- ibid., p. 69
- Evidence That Demands A Verdict, Josh McDowell., p. 305
- NIV Commentary, NIV Life Application Bible, p. 1479
- Believer’s Bible Commentary, William MacDonald, pp. 1088-1090
Notice that “the people of the ruler that will come” are mentioned immediately before the prophecy about “the end”, leading some people to believe that the 70th week happened immediately after A.D. 70 (when Titus destroyed Jerusalem). But history doesn’t record anything like the events of vs. 27, so they are still future. Yet since the two statements are stated as almost being the same event, we can conclude that there is a strong parallel between “the people of the ruler that will come” and the one who “will confirm a covenant with many for one ’seven’”.
This is the basis for the opinion that the Antichrist will be a Roman, as was Titus. But some will argue that Israel would never accept a Gentile messiah; however, the Jews of today (like Jesus’ disciples) Acts 1:6) only know the Messiah as the one who will bring “peace and safety” (Isaiah 9:6-7, Dan. 8:25, 1 Th. 5:3) to Israel. The same “generation of vipers” (Mat. 23:29-33) that crucified its Messiah will gladly accept a peace-bringing counterfeit (John 5:43). [Incidentally, this could be what Jesus meant in Luke 21:32 when he said that “this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened”. He was referring to the fact that Israel has persisted in rejecting God and his prophets, as is still true today. If Israel were in its land today because it had turned back to God, then there would be no reason to repent when Jesus returns (Zechariah 12:10-14).]
Rome was the last great world empire in Daniel’s vision; although it is not presently a world political power, it is still alive and in its divided state. Religiously, however, no one would doubt the global power of the Roman Catholic Church, whose Pope may very well turn out to be the False Prophet of Revelation. [It is possible that the Pope won’t be a Roman, but an Israeli! Rome has only recently appointed a non-Roman to that office, opening the door for a Jewish Pope. Yes, the RCC has a long history of anti-Semitism, but in today’s “tolerant” world, it may be politically advantageous to appoint a Jew.]
It’s quite plausible that the Roman Antichrist, like his ancient predecessors (such as the Roman emperor Constantine), will use the religious power of the RCC to gain political power, then throw it off when it is no longer needed (Rev. 17:16). Even now the RCC is busy assimilating all the world’s religions. It alone would have the power to bring together Protestants, Catholics, Jews, and even some Muslims, bringing about the long-awaited peace the world craves.
Ezekiel 37:1-14, 39:1-29
Between A.D. 70 and 1948, there was no nation of Israel. By about the 1800s many believed that God was through with Israel, so that prophecies about it must apply to some group that replaced it. This false belief, known as Replacement Theology, held that England, or the US, or the Church, etc. has replaced Israel in Biblical prophecy. They have accepted the blessings God promised Israel, but of course not the curses! Those few Christian scholars that still believed Israel would return to its homeland were ridiculed.
But following WWII, against all worldly wisdom, Israel was re-gathered in its homeland. At last the “dry bones” stood on their feet, proving that God wasn’t finished with Israel after all. This fact is major proof that the prophecies about Israel are literal and therefore don’t apply to anyone else. No one can deny that the prophecy of Israel returning to its homeland was made thousands of years in advance, proving that:
- Only the Bible is the Word of God
- Miracles are possible
- The remaining prophecies will certainly come to pass