INTRODUCTION

It is said among successful authors that good writing is re-writing. If this is true, the book you are holding should be a masterpiece! Kidding aside, I've lost count of the minor editions and this is the fourth complete revision of this manuscript, the time now spanning 15 years.

My theme centers around predictions. God's predictions. Bible prophecy. Scriptural eschatology. This subject is far-removed from optometry (my tent-making profession) nor am I an academically-prepared minister. However, I am encouraged by the fact that Isaiah, Amos, Jeremiah, Elijah, Daniel, Peter, John and other Bible personalities were also laymen. I'm not claiming spiritual equality with these men, just pointing out the fact that God did not use formal institutions to train them. God simply called and revealed Himself to them. Their response was to convey God's ways and His Word to all mankind. Thanks to them we have the Bible.

What, then, are my credentials and qualifications for writing this book? 1 --- I believe God called me. 2 --- I believe He has given me certain, pertinent insights into Biblical prophecy. I have decided to accept this as sufficient. I hope you do too.

It was late 1978 that I began my study of prophecy, completing the first edition of this work by mid-1979. Now, 15 years later, I'm more convinced than ever about the conclusions I reached at that time. I base this on becoming increasingly aware of prophecies already fulfilled (some ancient, some modern) which encourages me to share my observations with you.

The following introductory remarks will be longer than customary. However, in light of the intense nature of the subject matter, and because of my unusual background for such an undertaking as this, I feel it will be helpful for the reader to first know a few of my basic convictions concerning the Bible, in general, and about God's involvement with humanity.

THE BIBLE

God's Word is perfect. Now there are some differences among the various interpretations and modern translations but I'm convinced even most of these were under God's sovereign surveillance and protection. But on this we must not be mistaken: The original delivery recorded by those God chose to write the Bible was without error!

A modern Bible might be likened to an LP recording. In our day, when the Bible's purity and reliability is under such severe attack, I think it's worth the time it takes to explain what I mean.

With every handling of a record disc comes a few nicks and scratches that, when played, produce some pops and other unwanted sounds. However, you can also still hear clearly a duplicate of the original sounds that were put on the recording company's master disc.

I've been a sound-enthusiast for many years and in my earlier days learned about the process of record production. For example, let's suppose a conductor and orchestra get together to perform Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. Typically, the recording engineer records the session using several microphones and the sound output from those is put on several tracks of a multi-track tape recorder. Later, in the studio, that tape is played and the multi-tracks are mixed, balanced and combined into only two electronic signals (to create a stereo effect) and those are put on yet another tape recorder.

From this last two-track tape recording they make a round, hard-metal, master disc. The sound from the tape produces permanent 'wiggles' and 'squiggles' cut into the master disc. These tiny movements conform exactly to the electronic impulses from the tape recorder, which are 'carbon copies' of the original performance. In cookie-cutter fashion, this hard master disc is used to make impressions upon soft, plastic discs, the ones you and I (used to) buy. At home we place a phonograph needle onto the record and, 'miraculously', listen to beautiful music; in fact, a nigh-perfect replica of the original.

Although frequent playing has resulted in some imperfections, my 20-year-old LP copy of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony will always sound like the original master recording the record company has on file. Also noteworthy, when other orchestras play this same piece of music, producing shades of differences of course, every Beethoven fan will know that it is still his Fifth Symphony.

God's original statement to those who recorded the Bible is somewhat like that original, multi-track, master recording. When God first spoke to those who recorded what He said, there was no misunderstanding of His speech. Biblical authors (the recording 'engineers') wern't inspired as we ordinarily understand that term. The Bible was God-breathed into the minds of the writers. (See 2 Timothy 3:16.) They wrote down the exact words in the language (s) of God's choice (Hebrew, Aramaic or Greek), accurate in every detail like a master-tape records every nuance of sound made by an original orchestra performance. There were no mistakes.

Today, we do not have those original recordings from God. But we do have thousands of excellent, original-language, ancient copies, as well as meticulous translations from those ancient manuscripts written in hundreds of different languages. God has guarded His Word through the years. It may be that He has actually allowed several English translations to surface specifically to broaden some of the slightly-hidden meanings contained in the original languages. In other words, the translations don't necessarily contradict one another but each brings out certain shades of meaning others may miss. (Keep in mind, I'm not including here 'translations', so-called, introduced by certain non-Christian cults.)

The bottom line, even though there may be some 'nicks and scratches' in modern translations, the Master's Voice, and message, can still be heard loud and clear by anyone who cares to listen.

THE AUTHOR

So, God was both Author and Conductor of the original book (the 66 books recorded by 40+ writers) of what we call the Bible. It was a grand 'performance'. No scratches. No flaws. And during the Christian age, the Holy Spirit has watched over the 'musicians' (the translators) who made the original composition relevant to the readers of their day.

Later performances may not be exactly alike but, nevertheless, the Master Leader is still behind the scenes, and just as reachable as ever, through the reading and application found in today's versions of the Bible. On the whole, there is little, significant variation on the main themes and doctrines in the several English translations I use. Indeed, far more amazing is the tremendous agreement among translations rather than the few inconsistencies sometimes found.

Now I've said all that to instill in the reader's mind the value and credibility I place in the Bible as the authoritative and reliable source of wisdom and knowledge I believe it to be. And since the Bible is the only book which describes God and man and their inter-relationships with perfect accuracy, then it seems reasonable to assume it is also the only written resource we have which would predict, with absolute accuracy, the future of all mankind up to the end of time itself.

If this is true, then we must search out with all diligence, every "nook and cranny" of the Bible for all evidences which inform us of our day and what we can expect in the future. This has been my quest for the past 15 years and what I found is sufficiently-different from other prophetic writers that I think it is not too presumptuous to believe God would have me share it. Thus, I introduce you to my book, THE TWO WITNESSES.



"IN THE BEGINNING..."

As I said, before any Biblical commentary on any subject (but especially prophecy) is presentable, understandable, or deemed credible, the reader needs to know what the author believes about certain, foundational Biblical-truths. Here's mine.

From the onset of creation, God has purposed, and is now executing, a Master Plan which involves time, space and the material universe. Paradoxically, even scientists (largely an unbelieving group today) have helped prove that the earth is the apple-of-God's-eye, through the discovery that outer space holds no life as we know it here. The Bible agrees with this conclusion; but why it is so eludes us. For now it must be left in God's mind alone.

Basically, the book of Genesis explains all that God wanted us to know about how it all started. When there was yet nothing and God said, "Let there be...", followed by words which reflected His creative desires, whatever was in His mind suddenly materialized! Thus, God used words to bring into being everything you and I can see. Now if you can believe that, you are well on your way to becoming a believer---in the Biblical sense. On the other hand, if this troubles you, so will most everything else written in this book. (But even if you can't 'digest' these facts just yet, stick around anyway; becoming a believer is usually progressive. Perhaps somewhere along the way, things will begin to 'jive' for you.)

Actually, all creation is summarized by the first verse in the Genesis account:

"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."

After that verse, Moses (the recorder) was inspired to tell us a few of the details: The first creative act we are told about has to do with light. God said, "Let there be light, and there was light." Incredible! Light followed in the path of His words! This was the first prediction and when it came true, the first prophecy was fulfilled. So, from Genesis through the Bible's 66 books, one can trace all prophecy (and its fulfillment), right up to the end of time as described in Revelation, the last book of the Bible. And fittingly, the Bible ends with a prophecy:

"And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book." Rev. 22:19.

This verse is quite sobering, assuming the speaker here is as reliable as the One Who spoke light into existence. Let's face it, the creative speech of the 'Genesis God' perfectly matches everything seeable. This alone is indicative that the 'Biblical God' means business; business worthy of being believed. Since the Genesis account is so self-evident today, the verse above ought to cause an unbeliever to cry out to this God for His mercy. History's reality is pretty convincing proof that what God says shall come to pass, will!

OKAY, THE 'GENESIS GOD' IS GOD. BUT WHO IS THE 'REVELATION GOD'?

In Revelation 1:8 we find these words:

"I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End," says the LORD, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty." And then in Rev. 22:13 we see:

"I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last." Then comes the identifier:

"I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the Bright and Morning Star." Rev. 22:16.

An astounding discovery is made when these titles are linked. The 'Revelator' is said here to be "the LORD", "the Alpha and the Omega", "the Beginning and the End", "the First and the Last", "the Root and the Offspring of David" and "the Bright and Morning Star". Then, the absolute clincher that God is talking, the speaker is referred to as "the Almighty". Finally, in verse 22:16, this One who said all these titles belonged to Him, identified Himself by His common name---"I, Jesus,...".

There's no getting around the fact that the 'Revelation God', the One who made the statement of prophetic warning to those who attempt to alter Biblical prophecy, is Jesus of Nazareth. In fact, if one takes the time to trace it, this same Jesus is found to be the center-stage personality of all prophecy. Note, for example, the first verse of Revelation:

"The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass, and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John."

Wait a minute! If Jesus, "the Almighty", has the authority to speak at the end of God's Revelation to man, why don't we find Him in the beginning? Actually, we can. But before going into that, there is another personality who ought to be discussed here: God's primary opposing force.



THE ADVERSARY

Unsaved-man's understanding of the devil is a caricature of the truth of the matter. But because the reliability of the Bible is so well-founded, we need to know what it has to say about God's primary adversary. Since we are trying to establish a solid footing for understanding prophecy, I think it's important to find out how God's opposition came into the picture in the first place. Let's go back to Genesis again. Ironically, the very first mention of any opposition to what God had said after He spoke the universe into existence was:

"...Yea, hath God said,...?" Gen. 3:1.

Note the speaker's strategy. He struck at the very heart of the issue: the validity of God's own spoken words. You see, the whole foundation of Biblical-belief hinges on whether or not we can trust the One Who declared Himself as the Book's Author; and whether He is the source of power behind creation. The 'person' who spoke above was obviously trying to cast doubt in the mind of the one he was talking to.

Without quoting the whole passage, let me summarize the scene: (See Gen. 3.) God had already created man and woman at this time, naming them Adam and Eve. We don't know exactly how long it was after their existence that the above incident happened. However, a creature called the serpent came to Eve, conversed with her and was obviously attempting to destroy her confidence in God. He achieved his goal. She did what God had specifically told her and Adam not to do: eat of a certain forbidden fruit. She then enticed Adam and he also ate. From this seemingly-trite action eminated all human rebellion and ultimately all sin! The first human transgression against God had been committed.

Later, God judged the serpent for his temptation to Eve, saying he would in the future crawl on his belly. (Obviously, prior to the temptation the serpent was quite different from a snake as we now know it.)

But Genesis 3:15 is the verse I want to underscore:

"And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel."



This is an example of one of those passages I referred to earlier which has deeper meanings that will be missed without careful scrutiny. Most Christian scholars agree on the following:

1. First of all, on the physical plane, God is obviously talking to the serpent.

2. The "seed" of the woman, to which God refers in the verse, alludes to the Messiah --- Whom God would eventually send to the world to solve the sin problem which had been introduced there in the garden.

Note: (a), this "seed" is in the singular tense; (b), it would come from a woman; and (c), it would eventually "bruise" the head of the serpent. But, the fact is, a woman does not produce seed! She produces eggs, which must be fertilized by the seed of a man in order to propagate life. And yet, the emphasis here is that this seed would be from a woman, not from a man! How can this be?

Is it not reasonable to conclude that this prediction is referring to a woman who, not impregnated by a man, would someday produce a son? Surely this Genesis account about the woman and her seed is a forecast of what has become known as the incarnation: God in man form. (Read Matt. 1 and Luke 1).

But we must also ask, what is meant by the seed "bruising" the serpent's head and the serpent "bruising" the seed's heel? Well, regarding how God would eventually take care of man's rebellion in the Garden of Eden, and it's consequences, all Scripture points to Jesus Christ, the seed of God, as the One Who shouldered that responsibility. How did Jesus do this? The Bible says He took upon Himself the wrath of God (Luke 22:44) and the wrath of man (Acts 2:23 & 24), for the benefit of all man's sin (John 3:16). Jesus' crucifixion was the fulfillment of the serpent's part in the "bruising" of the "seed's" heel. The serpent thought he had destroyed the Son of God. But actually, Jesus' resurrection proved to be the crushing-blow to the serpent's head! In light of all history, the crowning 'blue ribbon' for plots-that-backfired must go to the serpent.

In this passage, God is pronouncing judgement upon the serpent who, at that time, had a nature quite different than afterwards. But the serpent was not acting only out of his own mentality. A careful study shows conclusively that it was Lucifer who had entered the serpent, and under his inspiration, Eve was tempted. (The Bible identifies Lucifer by many names such as devil, adversary, prince of the power of the air, prince of this world, god of this age, dragon, and serpent. But the most common Biblical name is Satan.)

Scripture presents Satan as the primary leader of all spiritual wickedness. As Lucifer, before his fall, Satan thought he was equal with God; and till this day is still determined to try proving he is. (See Is. 14.) Even though his eventual doom was sealed by Jesus' work at Calvary, Satan still has certain freedoms and privileges in this age. He plots and plans to thwart God's Master plan of the ages. Of course, Christians alone presently have the victory over Satan, but even they must access this victory through faith in Jesus Christ and application of the principles he laid down for us to follow. (I can't take the time here to Biblically-prove all this but the reader needs to know what I believe about the Bible's central themes for the overall presentation of this book to have its intended thrust.)

SATAN'S 'MASTER' PLAN

Obviously God has a Master plan. And He is bringing it to pass in a methodical way. We see its commencement in the Garden of Eden. In Revelation, we see a picture of the end of this age and even a general perspective of eternity-future. My book is about the time in between those two extremes.

But also, all along the way, Satan has attempted to place obstacles in the way of God's plan. It must be admitted that he's sometimes effective at it. How does he do it? In the garden of Eden, Satan did his dirty work through deception. He entered the serpent and through him, misguided Eve; and through her, tempted Adam. Satan has never deviated from this tactic. He doesn't have to, because it seems we are still just as blind to his spiritual trickery as they were. But he can only achieve evil results in and around our lives as we allow him to. Mainly, this comes through denying Jesus, the seed Whom God sent to deliver us from the serpent's deceptions.

Make no mistake, Satan has a 'master' plan too. This will be discussed later in greater detail, but for now we need to know that his system is founded on two obsessions:

1. Satan wants man to worship him, and

2. he wants to convince man that he can solve his own problems without the acknowledgement and submission to the God of the Bible.

This plan has been on-going since the beginning of the Fall of mankind. The Bible and history show very clearly that Satan thought he just about had his plan completed when certain kingdoms prevailed which he had inspired. (I shall later touch on several of these attempts.) To not see the satanic evidences of specific threats against God's coming-Kingdom will insure blindness in the area of Biblical prophecy. A key to understanding Satan, although somewhat paradoxical, is the fact that he desires to keep people ignorant of his existence.

WHY DOES GOD GRANT SO MUCH TIME AND SPACE TO SATAN?

Even though Satan's doom was sealed at Calvary almost 2,000 years ago, he still has God's permission, within certain limitations, to operate in this present generation. Actually, the Bible doesn't give an easy answer as to why this is so. However, I think the following comments do not violate any of the Scriptures.

Today, God is weaving His Master Plan primarily through the fabric of the Church. He is preparing for eternity those who believe in His Son and His kingdom. For reasons we can't fully fathom just yet, God has determined that Christians function under conditions of pressure from our common enemy---Satan and all his angelic brothers (demons) who fell with him.

In his earthly mission, Jesus beat Satan's temptations through the use of Scripture. Today, Christians must do likewise. So, even though every act of Satan is for evil intents and purposes, from God's omnipotent (all-powerful) and omniscient (all-knowing) position, He will ultimately use it to His Own glory.

To fully comprehend this is beyond any of us. My hope, belief and conviction is that nothing is out of God's control. He knows exactly what's going on and I believe that one day He will make very clear to Christians the meaning of these foggy days through which we are now passing. That's what trust is and trust is what true Christianity is all about.

To put this on a personal level, even though sin sometimes still exists in my life, by faith I accept the promise that I am a child of God. Even though Satan is still free to tempt and bite the heel, by faith I know that his defeat was determined at Calvary. Just as I was spiritually-saved (though yet physically-unborn) by what Christ did for me 2,000 years ago, at the same time Satan's doom was sealed. I hadn't come on the scene yet but my life, in God's mind, was as sure to occur as light was certain to come forth when God first said, "Let there be light...". Whether predicting good or evil, all God's promises became prophetic-reality the moment God spoke it!

Satan will eventually lose his grace-space. I'm just as certain of that as I am of my own salvation. I'm going to heaven. Satan is going to hell. Both were guaranteed by the obedience and work of Jesus Christ 2,000 years ago. The promise of God's seed in the garden of Eden was the word of prophecy which insured my eternal security. Just as surely, God made a statement that insured Satan's eventual, eternal separation from God and man.

The Bible says that hell was prepared for the devil and his angels. But people who reject God's Master Plan of the ages (i.e., the promise of the seed of God, Christ Jesus, Who would become the Redeemer of lost mankind), will also join Satan and all his cohorts in the same hell, for eternity. Now I realize that's hard, even frightening, negative talk. But the fact is, it's truth-talk. It's Biblical-talk. It's the kind of talk that can lead one to freedom. Jesus paid the price for us to avoid hell. If you never have, trust in Him now, and become eternally saved!

Next, let's see what Jesus Himself had to say about prophecy relative to our day.



JESUS ANSWERS A DIRECT QUESTION ABOUT THE END

Jesus Christ promised His disciples that He would some day return to earth to receive those who believe in Him and accept the gift of His salvation. Concerned about the establishment of His Kingdom, Jesus' disciples once asked Him:

"...What shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?..., (Matt. 24:3), to which He later responded, "But of that 'day and hour' knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only." (Matt. 24:36)

Clearly, we will not know the exact day or hour of His return. However, in the next verse following the above text, Jesus further explained, "...But as the days of Noah were...". At this point Jesus goes on to give a long discourse of the signs and conditions which would prevail upon the earth just prior to His return, making it clear He expects Christians to be on the alert and cognizant of these specific occurrences.



THE PROPHECY PUZZLE

Prophecy, much like a cardboard puzzle, is difficult to figure out; especially at first. Imagine a large puzzle scattered on a table and your job is to put it together correctly. Although many pieces look similar, no two are exactly alike. Now you know the designer of the puzzle had a very specific picture in mind because you have already seen a completed sketch on the box cover. What do you do?

First, find a few pieces, the curves, colors, and lines of which look as though they might be a part of a section of the picture. You assess, turn, align, push, shove, and finally two pieces fit exactly into position. Voila, you have successfully begun the project! No one could ever persuade you that those two pieces don't go together, right? The lines are correct, a portion of the picture is unmistakeably there, the colors match, and so on. It's right and you know it's right! Next, you proceed to another section and continue until you complete the full picture.

Similar to some pieces of a puzzle, there are certain Scripture passages which may seem trivial as they stand alone, but when placed alongside other passages, a clearer, prophetic word-picture begins to emerge. (A WORD OF CAUTION HERE: Cults have a long track record of interpreting Scriptures so that they conform to their already-established beliefs. Unfortunately though, this fact has caused many knowledgeable Bible-researchers to shy away from even looking for the deeper Biblical truths of Scripture---particularly concerning prophecy. The right approach? Careful, balanced, prayerful search.)

Let me give you an example of what I mean by "deeper, Biblical truth": It is well-accepted that Isaiah 53 is a prophetic portrait of Jesus as the suffering Messiah. If we were to stick to the rule 'interpret-the-literal-sense-only', as some suggest, the spiritual significance of Jesus would never have been realized as the greater truth of this passage!

THE LAW OF DOUBLE REFERENCE (LODR)

Thus, we see in Isaiah 53 an excellent example of Scripture which has two meanings, both equally true, but the second inference is spiritually-deeper, and obviously more important. This is known as THE LAW OF DOUBLE REFERENCE. There are numerous Old Testament portraits of the Messiah demonstrated in the lives of many individuals: e.g., Joseph, Moses, David, and others. These are well-known, thoroughly-established, factual fore-shadowings of Jesus Christ. Lesser known, it seems, is the fact that this same pattern is found in many prophetic passages that concern the entire Christian era. It is of utmost importance to understand this principle in order to comprehend my book. For brevity sake, I shall hereafter refer to the principle as the LODR.

VIEWS ON INTERPRETING THE BOOK OF REVELATION

According to Biblical commentators Jamieson, Fausset and Brown(1), there are three schools of interpreters on the book of Revelation.

1. THE PRETERISTS

The Preterists believe that almost the entire book of Revelation was fulfilled very early in Church history.

2. THE HISTORICAL

The Historical interpreters believe the book of Revelation comprises the history of the Church from John's time to the end of the world, the Seals being chronologically succeeded by the trumpets and the trumpets by the vials.

3. THE FUTURISTS

The Futurists consider almost the whole of Revelation as yet future, to be fulfilled immediately before Christ's second coming.

Now let me quote Jamieson, Fausset and Brown's response to the above schools:

"The first theory (The Preterists) was not held by any of the earliest Fathers and is only held now by Rationalists, who limit John's vision to things within his own horizon, pagan Rome's persecutions of Christians and its consequently anticipated destruction. The Futurists School, who believe that basically everything in Revelation is yet future, is open to this great objection: It would leave the Church of Christ unprovided with prophetical guidance or support under her fiery trials for almost 2,000 years! Now God has said, 'surely He will do nothing but He revealeth His secrets unto His servants the prophets.' The Jews had a succession of prophets who guided them with the light of prophecy: What their prophets were to them, that the apocalyptic scriptures have been, and are, to us."

Thus, it is obvious that Jamieson, Fausset and Brown support the Historical view of the Book of Revelation; namely, the continually-unfolding of the prophecies contained in the book from John's day on. In their commentary, J F & B give their view of a historical portrayal of the Seals, Trumpets and Vials. In my book, I am not embracing the identifications they give these prophecies. However, I do agree with them to this extent: That the book of Revelation is not understandable without seeing it as a prophetic picture of long-range events; not merely an end-of-the-age seven-year-countdown-to-Armageddon as proposed by most writers today.

A FOURTH WAY TO INTERPRET THE REVELATION

It is my opinion that none of these views (Preterist, Historical, or Futuristic), can singly provide full understanding of this prophecy puzzle. Upon completion of my commentary on the Seals, Trumpets and Vials (as well as other prophecies covered in this book), I came to the conclusion that both the Historical and the Futuristic concepts must be applied to cogently understand the Revelation. The question is, how can this be done? I'm convinced that the Law of Double Reference (LODR) is the only solution to this apparent dilemma.

Jumping a little ahead, take Seal # 1 as an example of my point. The words there describe a white horse, his rider and a brief explanation is given of the rider's accomplishments:

1. As of now (2002), the first meaning is already past, the long-range aspect having begun about the third century, and continued on for a long time after that (more fully explained later). This meets the requirements of the first of two meanings contained in the LODR --- the Historical.

2. At some future date from now (i.e., after 2002), another white horse and rider will come upon the scene in the early days of the Tribulation (coming out of the same white-horse-system as occurred in the Historical) and will continue for the space of only a few years. When this occurs, the secondary part of the LODR, the Futuristic, will be fulfilled.

Neither of these fulfillments is more true than the other. Picture the Historical as a fore-shadowing of the Futuristic. In the same manner as prophecy has always occurred, the first was a long-range picture of a similar, yet-to-be, shorter-scaled occurrence, the latter actually growing out of the first. Thus, the same words of Seal # 1 are describing both the Historical and the Futuristic aspects of this prophecy. This is not some wild thought of mine. In fact, it is exactly the same method God used in Isaiah 53, as already discussed.

Actually, I'm soft-pedaling my beliefs here. I think the concept is used throughout Scripture and what I will present in this book is probably only the tip of the iceburg of what God has placed in His Word with double-reference meaning. I anticipate criticism on this, particularly from those who fear over-spiritualizing the Scriptures. However, I must say what I believe God has shown me. My purpose is not to impress (or degrade) anyone. My desire is to be obedient to the Lord Jesus Christ.

But let me be fair by asking: Why would God inspire Revelation to be written with the LODR strategy in mind?

1. It follows the same pattern as the Old Testament, thus showing God's consistency in His Word.

2. It allows scripturally-sensitive Christians to see God's prophetic time-table. You see, if there is a Historical side to Revelation, i.e., not altogether Futuristic, then it follows that we can determine approximately where we are right now on the prophetic calendar. (Later in this book is a longitudinal time chart which shows an outline of the Seals, Trumpets, and Vials, each of which will be discussed in the text.)

NOTE:

The Seals and Trumpets mainly represent conflicts among men, which results from sin brought upon themselves; these, we'll see, have an unmistakeable dual-meaning. But the Vials are seven judgements upon the ungodly and the anti-Christ regime. They represent the Wrath of God which has no double-reference application. One dispensation will be quite sufficient! (More on this later.)

One last word before I begin my commentary on Biblical prophecy. I do not want to convey that I think my prophetic scenario is infallible. We are all subject to error. But once again, the commonly-held view in the Church today is that the Seals and Trumpets have nothing to do with the past 2,000 years. Based on Scriptural guidelines, this position must be challenged.

In writing this book, it is very important to know that I did not set out to dispel the Futuristic, or any other, viewpoint. My purpose is to present what I believe God has shown me. And obviously I want to be believed. But I shall be encouraged if this presentation does no more than cause the reader to think on just how unsensible and Biblically-untypical the notion is that the bulk of the book of Revelation refers only to a brief seven-year period.



1. 1"Commentary on the Whole Bible", by Jamieson, Fausset and Brown.