Facilitating Intramural Talks Today (Revised)
In this second installment of Round-Table Discussions, we want to encourage you to consider a number of Scriptures which form a harmonious theme between the identity of Second Temple Jerusalem and Babylon the Great of the Book of Revelation. Since, at first glance, our Atavistic understanding of Bible prophecy may be greatly misunderstood and seen in a bad light, it is necessary to first define what we mean or (at least) show why we believe the motifs in God's Word justify our interpretations of the Scriptures.
Like Open Theism, the path into an understanding of Atavist Eschatology cannot be gained by reading a few isolated proof-texts, but by reading entire passages and considering them in their respective contexts. So it can be said that the differences between conventional views on Bible eschatology and that espoused by the Atavist Bible Church mainly centers around and is determined by how we are paying attention to what the Bible says.
In this Round-table Discussion I would like to offer a comparison chart to show the astonishing parallels between Jerusalem of the Old Testament, Gospels, Acts and the Epistles, with Babylon the Great of the Book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ. If you are a Christian and are interested in learning and sharing what we are teaching, I invite you to ask your Christian friends a number of questions around who (or what) they think Babylon the Great Harlot is (or was)?
The Big Question: Was First Century Jerusalem Babylon the Great?
1. The Holy City to be destroyed: (compare Matthew 24:1-2 with Revelation 11:1-2).
2. Persecuted and killed the saints and prophets: (compare Acts 7:52 with Revelation 16:4- 7).
3. To be punished for the death of the Apostles: (compare Luke 11:49-50 with Revelation 18:20)
4. In her was found the blood of prophets and saints: (compare Matthew 23:29-39 with Revelation 18:24)
5. Jesus said it is not possible for a prophet to perish outside of Jerusalem (Luke 13:33-34). Notice in Revelation that the two prophets perish in the street of the Great City where our Lord was crucified (Revelation 11:8).
6. According to the Apostle Paul, Mosiac Jerusalem=the Egyptian bondwoman (Galatians 4:25). Notice that the Great City in John's vision is also called "Egypt." (Revelation 11:8)
7. Jerusalem was the first city from the creation of the world to be covenanted to Almighty God, and it is she who became the first harlot (Isaiah 1:21). In the Book of Revelation Babylon the Great is called "the Mother of Harlots" (Revelation 17:5).
8. On the Mount of Olives, Peter, James, John and Andrew admired Jerusalem's beauty (Mark 13:1-4). In Revelation, John saw Babylon and wondered with great admiration (Revelation 17:5-6). How likely is that John would have admired pagan Rome with all of its idols and temples?
9. Jerusalem sat on seven mountains.* Babylon the Great sat on seven mountains (Revelation 17:9).
10. In the Parable of the Wedding Invitation the wedding of the King's Son is ready after the city of those murderers is burnt up (Matthew 22:1-8). In Revelation 19:1-4 thundering praises of exaltation are given to God for the judgment and burning of the great harlot. And then in verse 7 the marriage of the Lamb is announced.
*Mount Goath, Mt. Gareb. Mt. Acra, Mt. Bezetha, Mt. Zion, Mt. Ophel and Mt. Moriah.
This study has immediate and profound implications for the four traditional views of Bible eschatology--Premillennialism, Postmillennialism, Amillennialism and Historicism. For, you see, if the identity of Jerusalem in the Old Testament, Gospels, Acts and Epistles is the same as Babylon the Great in Revelation, then Revelation was written before the Destruction of Jerusalem. Moreover, it would also mean that Babylon cannot be said to be Rome, the Vatican or a "One World Church." The indictment Jesus delivered in Matthew 23:29-39 is pretty specific, and I do not see how or why Romans or Catholics or Ecumenists would be held liable for the crimes Jesus specifically said were coming upon the Jerusalem of his day (Luke 11:45-51).
It has often been said that the Word of God interprets itself; I agree with this wholeheartedly! I believe the unity and harmony of the Scriptures attests to its divine origins. I also believe that no matter who you are or what kind of learning you have, or lack thereof, if you take what the Bible says and consider that information along thematic lines, along with the immediate context and historical situation, you will come up with a very good interpretation. This is how the idea of the Trinity was articulated, not because the Bible says, "God is a Trinity", but because all the information taken together leads you to believe that. The same is true for a partly open and a partly determined future. What is true for any other well-developed interpretation, will be found to be true of Atavist Eschatology. The more Christians become familiar with themes and topics which speak to the same thing, the more the differences and instability that characterizes our professed beliefs will diminish.
It is my hope and prayer that the things said on this site will be a blessing to you and those whom you fellowship with. If there is any way I can be of service to you, or if there are any questions you would like to see addressed, please feel free to contact me and I will be happy to discuss those concerns in a public forum. God bless.
For a more comprehensive study of this issue click here.