Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Truth About Islam: Culture

Dr. David R. ReaganBy Dr. David R. Reagan

Islam is a cultural religion that deifies 7th Century Arabian culture.1

Westerners tend to view religion as something intensely personal and private, and not as a cultural phenomenon. For example, Christianity is "supra-cultural" in that it allows people to live, dress and eat in accordance with the culture in which they exist. This is not so with Islam. In Islam there is no "secular realm" that is free of religion. Islam regulates every aspect of life to the point that religion, politics, and culture are inseparable. Islam is thus fueled by a subtle form of racism in which 7th Century Arab culture is to be imposed upon all other cultures.

Here are some examples of the cultural nature of Islam:

Political Structure — The tribalism of 7th Century Arabia is the political structure sanctioned by the Koran. The chief has absolute authority. There is no concept of civil rights. This principle is reflected today in the reality that all Islamic countries are ruled by dictators, and civil liberties, like freedom of speech and religion, do not exist.

Prayer — A Muslim is required to pray five times a day toward Mecca. This is a symbol of the underlying cultural imperialism that lies at the heart of Islam. Think of it — what if all Russian Orthodox throughout the world were required to pray toward Moscow? Or, if all Roman Catholics were required to face Rome when they prayed? What if Evangelical Christians were required to pray toward Jerusalem? Such requirements would imply a cultural attachment to the focal point of prayer.

Pilgrimage — A Muslim is required, despite the hardship and cost, to make a pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia once in his lifetime. Again, what if all Christians were required to go to Rome once in their lifetimes?

Dietary Laws — The only foods allowable are those that were acceptable in 7th Century Arabia.

Women — What an illiterate, nomadic tribeswoman wore in the desert in 7th Century Arabia is what is mandated for Muslim women today. The plight of women in Islamic countries today is despicable. They can be kept prisoners in their homes. They cannot appear in public without a covering. They are usually denied the right to vote. They are often denied anything more than a rudimentary education. In strict Islamic countries, women are generally treated as sub-human.2 Sura 4:34 says, "Men are the managers of the affairs of women... Those women who are rebellious — admonish them, banish them to their couches, and beat them."

Punishment — Cruel and unusual punishment is practiced throughout the Islamic world. Incarceration without due process is common. Punishments often include torture, the cutting off of body parts (hands, ears and tongues), the gouging out of eyes, beheading, and public flogging — all representative of 7th Century Arabian culture. The Koran specifically commands that those who disobey Allah are to be tortured (Sura 8:12-14).

Time magazine recently presented a chilling summary of the cultural nature of Islam as it is evidenced in the "moderate" Islamic nation of Saudi Arabia:3

"Despite the modernization that took place after the discovery of oil reserves in 1938, Saudi Arabia remains a land where rigid religious and traditional values are strictly enforced. Cinemas and discos are outlawed; men and women are separated in banks, schools, and fast-food restaurants; women must wear veils and are forbidden to drive. Public decency police known as muttawa comb shopping malls searching for women whose loose scarves reveal a curl of hair and forcing store owners to shut during prayer times. Unforgiving Saudi justice is on view after the main prayer every Friday, when a swordsman beheads blindfolded murderers, sorcerers, drug smugglers, and other criminals in Riyadh's 'Chop-chop Square.'"


Notes

  1. There is an outstanding discussion of the cultural nature of Islam in the book by Robert Morey entitled, The Islamic Invasion (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 1992). See in particular pages 19-32.

  2. Abdullah Al Araby, "Incredible Teachings of Muhammed," on the Internet at http://www.islamreview.com/. This is the website of a ministry called The Pen vs. The Sword. It contains many excellent articles about the true nature of Islam.

  3. Scott Macleod, "Inside Saudi Arabia," Time, October 15, 2001, p. 62.


The next article will explore the truth about the spiritual nature of Islam.

24 comments:

Mitchell said...

Good snapshot of Islamic culture.

Regarding prayer, they pray towards Mecca because it is the spiritual birthplace of Islam, it's homestead. Mecca is known to Muslims as a city of seven hills, much like Rome to many Christians.

As for the pilgrimage, it is mandatory providing the Muslim is physically able. Some also say as long as they are financially able.

The punishments of Islam are barbaric. In Saudi Arabia for instance capital punishment is carried out by beheading, especially if someone leaves the Muslim faith for any other religion.

In Islamic countries everyone has an ID card. The ID card must specify what religion you are, for example "M" for Muslim or "C" for Christian or "J" for Jew. Even today a Christian in a Muslim country is often treated as a second-class citizen, unable to serve in the military or police, some cannot work or own a business. They cannot own a weapon to defend themselves, nor can they testify against a Muslim in court, etc. It will get increasingly worse for Christians in Muslim countries as these nations become more and more radicalized.

Case in point:

Iraq: "Minorities in Iraq have also faced crises due to their religious identity... Canon Andrew White, vicar of St. George’s Anglican Church in Bagdad and head of the Foundation for Reconciliation and Reconstruction in the Middle East, testified as a witness at the hearing that Christians, in particular, “are being disproportionately targeted.” Many Christians are being threatened either to convert to Islam or face execution."

http://nifcon.anglicancommunion.org/digest/docs/digest03.cfm

Sal said...

Interesting that 42 other cities call themselves a "City on Seven Hills," though Rome holds the original title.

son of thunder said...

That's what they called Rome in John the Revelator's day, and it's still refered to by that name today.

Mitchell said...

It is interesting Sal, but those cities have no religious or prophetic significance.

Anonymous said...

Here is a 30 minute video on the culture of radical Islam called "The Third Jihad" that some may find interesting.

http://blip.tv/file/1382254/

Billy said...

The article says "Christianity is "supra-cultural" in that it allows people to live, dress and eat in accordance with the culture in which they exist."

That is a very broad statement. I'm not sure I agree with that. I don't think Christianity accepts things accepted by our culture as they exist today such as tatooing, body piercings, cross dressing transgendered perverts, etc.

I think it is more accurate to say that Christianity DOES require conformity to things acceptable to God which may conflict with things culturally acceptable.

son of thunder said...

Billy, I agree that maybe Dr. Reagan's brush-stroke was little too broad, but on th other hand, Paul stated that he became whatever he needed to be to grab peoples attention.

Example: Would a guy who listens to Metallica be attracted to someone who sings like Pat Boone? No, he'd listen to the guy who looks and sounds like Metallica.

Remember, God judges the heart not the exterior of a person.

Billy said...

Just to be clear, salvation is based on accepting Jesus as your Savior, nothing else, so that isn't my argument.

That being said, however, I do feel that Christians are expected to live their lives in a holy manner.

And as far as attracting people...I say attract them with the unabridged Word of God. I don't think you do that by putting on little horns and tail to be appear more appealing.

son of thunder said...

You misunderstand me, Billy. Yes, salvation is based on accepting Jesus as Savior, and yes, we are to live differently, but that's not to say that a Christian can't dress in a certain way.

We can be in the world but not of the world.

Let's think about Jesus a minute. For whom did Jesus dress? The religious leaders? Not hardly. He became the rabble, Joe Average. The people He knew would listen to Him. Did Jesus put on a little tail and horns? No, but He appeared as His target group: The prostitute, the tax collector, the shunned and ignored. Today they would be prostitutes, drug dealers, the shunned and ignored.

If all we do is look and act like your average TBN type... I'm saved and Spirit-filled, but I can't stand to watch that whatever that is, so I know some guy with a green Mohawk won't look at it.

Yes, it takes God to save someone, we can't save anyone, but if we walk around in expensive suits with the biggest, blackest Bibles we can find, we're going to drive a lot of people away because they don't think we can relate to their life.

Billy said...

Jesus didn't take up with sinners by becoming like them (in either action or dress). Actually, He convicted them with their sin so they would know they needed His forgiveness. Then He expected them to change their ways and not remain as prostitutes, liars, thieves and homosexuals.

You don't need to conform to your target audience to reach them. It's the power of the Word and the Spirt that reaches people, not a shared style of language, dress, etc.

Billy said...

Again, I must clariy my point. My original comment was about one line in an article being broad in scope. But I agree with the line to a point.

Yes, we aren't limited in our lives the way they are in Islam. (I can eat bacon and shave without fear of getting my head chopped off). But we are limited in our lives in the sense that God wants us to do what is right and holy in His eyes.

Thank God that Jesus is there for Christians when we stray from that narrow path to forgive us so that we may find our way once again...and again...and again...

son of thunder said...

I agree with you to a point, Billy. We shouldn't be conformed to the world; that's not my point at all. Yes, it is the power of the Word that changes lives. We are in absolute agreement. It's our thoughts on how that Word may or may not be presented that differs.

Unlike Islam, we have the freedom to have a green Mohawk and a pair of faded jeans, and I thank God Almighty for it.

We want the same thing: God's Word to invade the deep, dark places of planet earth (the nightclubs, stripclubs, etc.) We want that Word to invade mosgues and synagogues and churches and change lives for Messiah. I just believe that, up to a point, it doesn't hurt to "blend in" a little, that's all.

Billy said...

I think we've both made our opinions clear at this point. Thanks for your part of the discussion. The more people discuss the more they think things through.

son of thunder said...

Yeah, both points are made. That's one of the beautiful things about Christianity: It's OK to disagree about the little things. As long as Jesus is Messiah and Lord, the little things are really just meaningless.

Sal said...

Right-o, Mitchell, other than Rome in John's time, the other 41 "city on seven hills" held no importance in power or religion. Therefore, John could only have been talking about Rome.

Mitchell said...

Hi Sal,

Other than Rome in John's time? Rome was no Mystery in John's time, yet he describes it specifically as a "Mystery". Are you saying that Mecca has no religious significance today, and therefore no prophetic significance in the Last Days? John was being shown the future, the Last Days, per the context of Revelation 17 and 18.

Who is more likely to behead the saints in the last days? Islam does this already today. I don't see Rome beheading or planning to behead people.

Who corrupts the nations today? Islam does this with Islamic influence throughout the earth (they are the #1 financiers of mosque construction in the world).

Who has greater influence over the kings of the earth? Saudi Arabia does with OIL.

Who is drunk with the blood of the saints in the last days? Islam is drunk with the blood of the saints today already, and at an ever increasing rate.

I could go on and on to show why Rome just doesn't make a whole lot of sense at all.

son of thunder said...

Rome does make a lot of sense when you think about it. I hate to say it, but there are a lot of similarities between the pre-Islamic Arab "mystery" religions and Roman Catholisism: prayer beads, Mary/Semaramis worship, Tammuz/Jesus worship, unmarried priests, Lent, Easter/Ishtar, Christmas/winter solstice, etc. When you really dig into history you find many similarities.

How many Christians were murdered during the Inquisition, many by beheading?

Pope Benedict has already declared that Muslims and "Christians" both worship the same "god" and even prayed towards Mecca in a mosque.

I think what we see in the future is a mixture of a humanistic "Christianity" and Islam, since Allah will be proven as a false god to many Muslims when the Islamic hordes are destroyed in the Gog/Magog invasion.

Mitchell said...

son of thunder,

The Inquisition from hundreds of years ago? You're not becoming a preterist or partial preterist now are you? The Book of Revelation is speaking about what happens just prior to the return of Christ. Rome (Catholicism) does not make any sense really, however Mecca (Islam) does. Here are more reasons to consider:

* Although Rome existed at the time John wrote the Book of Revelation, the Holy Spirit does not name "Rome" in Revelation 17-18. By contrast, Scripture is not shy about calling Rome by name in the Book of Acts and in the various Apostolic letters. Some commentators speculate that John didn't want to call Rome by name for fear of persecution by Roman officials. Nonsense. God's prophets have always stood up to the kings and bureaucrats of their day.

* Although pagan Rome embraced the core of Babylonian paganism, it did not invent that religion.

* Although aspostate religious leaders in Rome later incorporated some Babylonian symbolism and concepts into Catholicism, and although there have been those who've positioned that church to be the woman, that religion has generally lost its influence over the major nations of the world.

* Although Catholicism went through a terrible period of apostasy during which it murdered Christians and Jews, the Roman Catholic Church has adopted a more peaceful, mainstream religious position as it has faded into the background of world events.

* A clue from the Bible itself: the angel takes John into the desert (not to Europe) to show him the harlot woman and harlot city.

* Here is another clue from the Bible itself: the "great city" of Revelation 17-18 buys extravagant luxury items. The city of Rome in these days sells them, and is thus more likely to be among the merchants watching the "great city" from a distance. Mecca/Saudi Arabia imports almost everything.

By the way, Gog/Magog is Armageddon. Calling Gog/Magog a different war is a misconception that many in the church have today in my opinion.

Here is a radio interview that Dave Hunt gave regarding Ezekiel 38 and 39. with The Berean Call:

http://www.thebereancall.org/audio/2006/5006a.mp3

Those who believe that Gog/Magog of Ez 38-39 is different than Armageddon are contending that Christ physically comes down in wrath, shakes the planet, crumbles mountains, sinks islands, sends hail, fire & brimstone and destroys the invading armies, feeds their bodies to ravenous birds, gives them a burial place in the valley and proves to the world and Israel that He is God, then goes back up to Heaven and comes back down and does the exact same thing all over again a few years later because the world conveniently forgot the utter destruction that happened a few year prior. There is no logic to this. Consider this -- if the mountains are thrown down per Ezekiel 38:20, what mountains will there be to be thrown down a second time per Revelation 6:20? These are not two different wars. They are separate descriptions of the same event.

We need to keep in mind that just because certain details are left out of Ezekiel's description when compared to other descriptions does not automatically mean that he is talking about a different war. Biblical prophetical literature (just as the four Gospels) can often speaks about a single event yet with details often included or omitted depending on the prophet. Joel will not include all the same details of Ezekiel, who will not include all the same details as John, who will not include all the same details as Daniel, etc. Zechariah describes additional details regarding Jerusalem, Ezekiel describes the same battle but with additional details regarding the nations themselves specifically. In both instances it is God who draws them into the valley so that He can destroy them. Think of the descriptions from Ezekiel, Joel, Zechariah, Daniel, John for instance as different pieces to the same puzzle.

SeanOsborne said...

son of thunder wrote...
"I think what we see in the future is a mixture of a humanistic "Christianity" and Islam, since Allah will be proven as a false god to many Muslims when the Islamic hordes are destroyed in the Gog/Magog invasion."

I agree 100%. Islam will not exist during the reign of the Antichrist as it does in these days. It it will be due to the events of Isaiah 17, Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38/39 which will lead to the literal fulfillment of Isaiah 19.

This Islamic Antichrist nonsense is just that... nonsensical false teaching.

Mitchell said...

SeanOsborne writes, "I agree 100%. Islam will not exist during the reign of the Antichrist as it does in these days."

You're right. It will be even worse than it is today. A growing number of Christians are now beginning to understand the prophetic significance of this antichrist religion in the last days. The 'glass ceiling' of the Revived Roman Empire / European Antichrist theory is beginning to crack. With all due respect to you brother Sean, and in my opinion, I am confident that it is only a matter of time before you begin to realize this as well.

From Prophezine.com - March 1 2009

NEWSWEEK - Learning to Live With Radical Islam

I find it interesting that here Newsweek is saying "You know what the west needs to do? Accept Radical Islam....." Ok this is Ray paraphrased, but start looking for more of these sort of dumbing down the masses articles painting Islam as really not that bad as we first thought. You see according to those from a liberal mindset , the real problem is ours, we just need to learn to accept these murderous thugs. Once we accept them, things will be honky-dory. That is what they want us to believe. Folks, England went that route and look at what is happening there. These pictures are from a pro-Muslim protest in England.

Why are we going to see more of these articles like Newsweek is coming out in the magazine issue dated Mar 9, 2009 ? If you did not know, the UN is getting ready to hold their Durban II conference on racism to be held April 20-24 in Geneva.

This UN meeting really has nothing to do with racism at all, but forcing the nations of the world to accept Islam under the guise of racism. Oh yea, also on the slate, the need to annihilate Israel any way they can. That is what took place at the Durban I conference, doubt the topics of discussion will change much looking at who will be attending.

If you have not noticed, what is happening today is the face of the UN is changing from a dominate western face, to a soon to be dominate Muslim face. More and more countries are either Muslim in the UN or siding with Muslim countries. The Muslim voting block within the UN is becoming a ruling force, soon they will have the majority and then will rule the UN.

There has been reports about the UN moving to Babylon once Iraq, US, UN and other countries work to rebuild her. With a Muslim dominate UN, I can see just such a thing taking place.

People keep pointing to a strawman EU and yet they are ignoring what is taking place right before them. A global one world government headed by Islam is forming right before them. They got the oil, the money, and the masses willing to kill (be-head). I believe people need to start looking towards the eastern leg of Daniel's statue, which out lived the western by 1000+ years. We need to also keep an eye on the UN again and see the eastern direction that she is going. Islam wants to bring back the glory days of the Caliphate. The UN would be a good place to start.

A Question To All Takers

I have a question to all that are willing to take this on. This is one of the many reasons I have been looking and researching Daniel's Eastern Leg vs. his Western for the past year.

Scripturally to fulfill the Biblical criteria for the fourth kingdom AKA Rome per Daniel 2:40, Rome had to have crushed the prior three kingdoms.

Here is the verse I am pointing too...

Daniel 2:40 (KJV) And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron: forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things: and as iron that breaketh all these, shall it break in pieces and bruise.

Like many of you, I am one who stands on the literal interpretation of scripture, therefore note the word ALL.

Everyone knows and agrees that the three prior kingdoms were Babylon, Greece and Persia.

Now, if Rome was the fourth kingdom as many have taught for the last 200 years, and they were to crush ALL like Daniel stated; why is it that Rome never crushed Persia?

Please understand, this is a historical fact. Also, please, don't take my word on this, check this out for yourself on a map.

So, if Rome never crushed Persia, then who is in error and why are we looking to the EU?

The Bible is absolute truth. According to what I have asked here, Rome did not fulfill Daniel 2:40.

If that is the case, how many people are looking to the West and possibly being deceived by the East today?

If you have an answer for me, please contact me, I am all ears. To date no one has been able to maintain a Western Leg Theory and answer this question.

http://www.prophezine.com/

SeanOsborne said...

As is usual these days, Ray Gano is once more misinterpreting Bible prophecy, this time it's a botched rendering of Daniel 2:40.

Nowhere in the verse does it state that Rome as the fourth kingdon would "crush" the previous Empires. It simply is not there.

Anyone with even a rudimentary knowledge of world historical facts would know that Rome did not crush the empire of Alexander the Great. Alexander's Empire broke into 4 smaller empires upon his death, and well prior to the rise of Rome - exactly as also prophesied by Daniel.

So here we see primary evidence of Ray Gano simultaenously being ignorant of both historical facts and Bible prophecy.
In his quest for the "literal" interpretation, Ray has twisted the previous prophetic Word coming from Daniel and ignored real-world historical facts.

Rome did not crush the Empire of Persia. Alexander the Great had done that hundreds of years prior.

And Rome did not crush the Empire of Babylon. Neither did Alexander. The Persia Empire had done that hundreds of years prior. All as exactingly foretold by Daniel.

The fact is that the empire Rome contended with on its eastern flank was not the Persian empire that Alexander had already conquered and destroyed; it was the Parthian empire, itself originating with the Arsacid, (a/k/a western Khorasan) in extreme northeastern regions today known as Iran, Turkmenistan and central Asia. This region was a throw-off province of the Seleucid (Macedonian/Greek) Empire also foretold by Daniel.

Scripturally, the faulty interpretation Ray Gano is applying here is best seen by reading Young's Literal Translation of Daniel 2:40

"And the fourth kingdom is strong as iron, because that iron is breaking small, and making feeble, all [things], even as iron that is breaking all these, it beateth small and breaketh."

What this verse is clearly describing is the attributes of the Roman Empire as being both simultaneously strang and brittle as iron is commonly known to be, that it breaks into smaller pieces; that iron makes feeble all things it is beaten upon, and that as it is beaten upon it will break into smaller things.

This says nothing about Alexander's Empire, Persian Empire of Babylon. It is descriptive of the attributes of iron. It is illustrative as how Rome was a two-legged empire which eventually broke into smaller pieces as seen in Daniel description of the ten toes at the base of the empire statue.

What the sum of Daniel's inspired prophetic word says is in perfect harmony with the prophetic Word of the Father in Revelation 13, and that is that the fourth kingdom, Rome, would have the attributes of the prior three.

SeanOsborne said...

I've have expounded upon and improved on the basic response above on my Eschatology Today blog:

In Response to Ray Gano's Question

Mitchell said...

SeanOsborne said, "Nowhere in the verse does it state that Rome as the fourth kingdon would "crush" the previous Empires. It simply is not there."

Really? Let's look at a few more translations of Daniel 2:40:

NKJV: "And the fourth kingdom shall be as strong as iron, inasmuch as iron breaks in pieces and shatters everything; and like iron that crushes, that kingdom will break in pieces and crush all the others."

NLT: "Following that kingdom, there will be a fourth great kingdom, as strong as iron. That kingdom will smash and crush all previous empires, just as iron smashes and crushes everything it strikes."

NIV: "Finally, there will be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron—for iron breaks and smashes everything—and as iron breaks things to pieces, so it will crush and break all the others."

ESV: "And there shall be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron, because iron breaks to pieces and shatters all things. And like iron that crushes, it shall break and crush all these."

TNIV: "Finally, there will be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron—for iron breaks and smashes everything—and as iron breaks things to pieces, so it will crush and break all the others."

NASB: "Then there will be a fourth kingdom as strong as iron; inasmuch as iron crushes and shatters all things, so, like iron that breaks in pieces, it will crush and break all these in pieces."

ASV: "And the fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron, forasmuch as iron breaketh in pieces and subdueth all things; and as iron that crusheth all these, shall it break in pieces and crush."

HNV: "The fourth kingdom shall be strong as iron, because iron breaks in pieces and subdues all things; and as iron that crushes all these, shall it break in pieces and crush."

AMP: "And the fourth kingdom [Rome] shall be strong as iron, since iron breaks to pieces and subdues all things; and like iron which crushes, it shall break and crush all these."

CEV: "Next, a kingdom of iron will come to power, crushing and shattering everything."

NCV: "Then there will be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron. In the same way that iron crushes and smashes things to pieces, the fourth kingdom will smash and crush all the other kingdoms."

HCSB: "A fourth kingdom will be as strong as iron; for iron crushes and shatters everything, and like iron that smashes, it will crush and smash all the others."

NIRV: "Finally, there will be a fourth kingdom. It will be as strong as iron. Iron breaks and smashes everything to pieces. And the fourth kingdom will crush and break all of the others."

NIVUK: "Finally, there will be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron— for iron breaks and smashes everything— and as iron breaks things to pieces, so it will crush and break all the others."

GWT: "There will also be a fourth kingdom. It will be as strong as iron. (Iron smashes and shatters everything.) As iron crushes things, this fourth kingdom will smash and crush all the other kingdoms."

Note that the fourth kingdom will break in pieces and crush all the other kingdoms. This is not true of the Roman empire. When examining a map of the Roman empire during its greatest extent, we find that it did not even reach beyond the Euphrates River in Babylon. For the Roman empire to have crushed all the other kingdoms, it must have been able to conquer the Grecian and Medo-Persian empires. Rome conquered the Western portion of the Grecian empire but not the Eastern portion. Rome did not even reach the heart of the Medo-Persian empire (Iran) which extended East to the Indus River. The fourth kingdom had to conquer all the areas of the 3 previous kingdoms in order to meet the criteria of the text in Daniel 2:40.

Some argue that the two legs of the image in Daniel 2 are the East-West division of the Roman empire. In his excellent article titled Daniel's Scope of Prophecy Does Not Include Rome!, Dave Watchman writes:

"After that the belly and thighs of brass represent the Grecian Empire of Alexander the Great, today we would call the Middle East. Then the two legs which are merely extensions of the thighs represent two of the four generals which this vast territory was divided up between at the death of Alexander the Great (Daniel 8:21-22). General Ptolemy to the south took over an area around Egypt, and General Seleucid in the north took over an area we would call Syria today, and of course Israel was a land bridge between the two. Then the feet, which are merely extensions of the Grecian legs, represent the future Antichrist Empire; which is the focus of the entire Book of Daniel in the first place.

Read carefully now the anatomy of this metal man image as it is dissected into each of it's parts by the Authorized King James Bible in Daniel 2:32-33 :

This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, 33) His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay.

Lets read again the description of the third Grecian Kingdom:

The text says ...his belly and his thighs of brass. It doesn't say his 'belly and his hips' of brass, or it doesn't say his 'belly and loins' of brass; IT SAYS HIS BELLY AND HIS THIGHS OF BRASS. Now we know from our own body, the thigh ends just above the knee, and the legs are extensions of the thigh; in other words as that Ole song goes 'the FOOT BONES connected to the ...LEG BONE: the LEG BONES connected to the ...THIGH BONE' etc. So the legs and feet are merely extensions out of Alexander the Greats Grecian Empire; therefore making it impossible the Antichrist Kingdom in the feet will come out of the Roman Empire/E.U.! This is where the kings of the North and kings of the South in Daniel Chapter 11 come from: extensions of the Grecian Empire."

It appears that Babylon had to be the center of the kingdoms that ruled after the Babylonian empire. This was true with the Grecian and Medo-Persian empires but not true with Rome. Even though Rome could cross the Euphrates and reach Mesopotamia around the year 116 AD, this only lasted a few months until the Roman emperor Trajan died and the Romans retreated from the region. Babylon must have been the center of the fourth kingdom as it was the center of the first three kingdoms. According to Revelation 18, Babylon will be the center of the Antichrist's kingdom which is the fourth kingdom of Daniel 2. Babylon was the Lion in Daniel 7 and the lion's mouth is seen on the beast of Revelation 13.

Another reason why Rome cannot be the fourth kingdom is seen in Daniel 2:34-35:

"Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth."

Here we read that the stone which symbolically represents God's kingdom will destroy the Iron, the clay, the brass, the silver and the gold (Babylon) TOGETHER! This means that when Christ returns he will destroy all the kingdoms of Daniel 2 at the same time. How can that be since Babylon, Persia, and Greece ruled in the past you might ask? Even though Daniel saw these kingdoms as successive empires, he also saw them coming back together in the future. This is true in Revelation 13 where we read that the three beasts of Daniel 7 which represent the same kingdoms of the metal image of Daniel 2 are seen together as a composite kingdom made of the body parts of the leopard (Grecian), bear (Persian) and lion (Babylonian) empires.

The fourth kingdom in Daniel 2 must be a conglomeration of the 3 previous kingdoms since all of them are destroyed together when Christ returns. If Rome was not in view in Daniel 2, which kingdom is supposed to be the fourth then? A very little mistake has led prophecy students to conclude that there will be a revival of the Roman empire to be the kingdom of the Antichrist. This mistake goes as follows: Most prophecy teachers say that since Rome fell, no other empire has ruled any part of the world, therefore Rome must return to form the kingdom of the Antichrist. History shows quite the opposite. After the Western section of the Roman empire fell in 476 AD, the Eastern section with Constantinople as its capital continued on until about 1453 A.D, when it finally fell to the Islamic Caliphate of the Ottoman Turks.

History shows that the Ottoman empire conquered the entire Middle East, parts of Asia, North Africa, Eastern Europe, and Southwestern Europe all the way to Spain, yet prophecy teachers say that no other empire ruled since the fall of Rome. Before the Ottoman empire, there was another empire which conquered the entire Middle East, parts of Asia, North Africa etc. around the year 850 AD. This was the Islamic empire and as we can see, it ruled much of the world including the three previous kingdoms of Daniel 2, namely the Babylonian, Persian and Grecian empires which ruled the entire Middle East. It seems quite clear from the text that the Middle East is what is in view in Daniel 2.

It is hard to conclude whether the fourth kingdom of Daniel 2 which crushes all the others is the Islamic empire or the Ottoman empire. Since both empires basically ruled the same areas and had the same objectives, i.e. bring the dominated areas under Islamic rules, we can conclude that they can be one and the same in two different stages.
This Islamic-Ottoman kingdom alone qualifies to be the fourth kingdom of Daniel which was supposed to crush and brake is pieces the Babylonian, Persian and Grecian empires. As the Islamic empires conquered the three first kingdoms of Daniel 2, it crushed them and as the Islamic empire divided the conquered lands in different section under different rulers, it literally broke the others in pieces as the text says in Daniel 2:40.

Today Islam is growing to be the major power in the Middle East. Islam is not just a religion as many assume but it is also a form of government, a judicial system and a political ideology. It could be classified as a theocracy just as Israel was a theocracy in ancient times when the Torah and Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) shaped the lives of the Israelites. The Koran is not only used as a religious book, but as a political and judicial document which shapes the policies of Islamic nations in the Middle East. The text in Daniel says that the fourth kingdom will produce 10 kings as seen in the image of the ten toes of the feet of the image which are a mixture of Iron and clay:

"And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken." (Daniel 2:42)

The toes of the image which are ten are mixed with a new element (clay) which makes the kingdom partly strong and partly broken. In the following verse Daniel explains what the weakness of the clay represents:

"And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay."

Here we see that they (the toes) shall MINGLE themselves with the seed of men but shall not be united just as iron is not MIXED with clay. It is interesting that the words MINGLE and MIXED are translated from the same Aramaic word ARAB (Strong's 6151).

Some have suggested that the Aramaic word ARAB refers to the Arab peoples. The Strong's concordance itself says that an Arabian is a related entry to the Aramaic ARAB. We read that the kings represented by the toes will not cleave one to another even as iron does not mix with clay. This is referring to a division among these kings. Even though they are politically united they do not have the same goals.

Could it be that this is referring to the fact that within Islam itself there are disagreements regarding how to follow Islamic rules. This is a fact that can be seen in the Islamic world as some nations are Shiites whereas others are Sunnis. These are two branches of Islam that oppose each other. Could it be that Daniel was given insight into the differences of beliefs among the 10 kings of the feet of the image who supposedly are Arabs? Could it be that these differences are what the clay refers to in order to make the kingdom partly broken?

The Return of Babylon, Persia and Grecia

As we have seen in this article, the Iron, the Silver, the brass and the gold will be destroyed at the same time. This suggests that the Babylonian, Persian and Grecian empires will be present in the end times and will be partly united into a single kingdom to be destroyed by Jesus Christ. The current situation in Iraq is paving the way for this nation to become a major player in the region. Revelation 18 makes it very clear that Babylon must be the political and economic center of the Antichrist's kingdom.

The Persian bear is awakening. Persia officially changed its name to Iran in 1935. Iran is currently becoming one of the strongest nations in the region militarily with the production of intercontinental ballistic missiles and the goal of producing a nuclear bomb. Persia (the bear) is said to crush with its feet in Daniel 7 and the feet of the bear are seen in the beast of Revelation 13. The regions of Pakistan and Afghanistan were also under Persian control.

Grecia is also arising. We should take notice of the fact that when we refer to the Grecian empire we should not think of modern Greece or Athens. The Grecian empire was divided into four major sectors and later the Seleucid dynasty which ruled the regions of Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan was the major power that came out of the Grecian empire and according to Daniel 11, the Antichrist comes out of this Grecian division which is North of Israel. The other major division of the Grecian empire was the Ptolemaic dynasty which ruled the regions of Egypt, Libya and Northern parts of Sudan.

Do you get the picture now? Here we have a total of 10 Islamic nations that could be the 10 kings that will come out of the fourth kingdom.

1 Iraq
2 Iran
3 Pakistan
4 Afghanistan
5 Turkey
6 Syria
7 Lebanon
8 Egypt
9 Libya
10 Sudan

Since Jordan, Saudi Arabia and other nations of the Middle East were under the dominion of these kingdoms and of the Islamic-Ottoman empire, we can have more than 10 Islamic nations as candidates for the 10 kings. In our article titled The Ten Kings of the Beast: They Come From the East we explored the identity of possible 10 Islamic nations to be the 10 horns of the beast of Daniel 7 that will be the 10 toes of the feet of the image in Daniel 2.

Conclusion

Popular prophecy teachers all point to Rome as the fourth kingdom of Daniel. They all say that Rome must return in the form of a European confederacy in order to bring forth the 10 nations that will for the kingdom of the Antichrist. The text in Daniel seem to skip Rome which began as a Western kingdom and jump to the Islamic empire which ruled the entire Middle East, the geographical context of Daniel 2. Today we see that the Islamic nations of the Middle East that were within the confines of Babylonian, Persian and Grecian domination are rising to power and are threatening the very existence of Israel which will be the main target of this kingdom. The European Union does not fit these description as many assume. Only the Islamic nations of the Middle East meet the criteria of Daniel 2 in order to fulfill biblical prophecy.

http://www.beastfromtheeast.org/Daniel_2_Middle_East.html

Nathan Jones said...

Good article, Sean! That Rome has to impossibly conquer empires already expired hundreds of years earlier as some prerequisite to qualify as the kingdom of origin of the Antichrist just doesn't make any sense, nor fit what Dan. 2:40 is saying.