Had to caution a few brothers that were sending out thoughts on Facebook and a few places on the matter of looking for God's intervention in human affairs "whenever it is that they are saying "Peace and security!" around the time (a few weeks ago) America seemed to be making progress in securing peace between North Korea and the West. I reminded them about Jesus' words at Matthew 24:42-44, as follows:
"(Matthew 24:42-44) Keep on the watch, therefore, because you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. 43 “But know one thing: If the householder had known in what watch the thief was coming, he would have kept awake and not allowed his house to be broken into. 44 On this account, you too prove yourselves ready, because the Son of man is coming at an hour that you do not think to be it."
At the transfiguration Jehovah told Jesus' disciples to "Listen to him". These sayings are from the same source, Jehovah, but we have to be sober and not run off with one but not weighing the other. We know the season we are in, but we will not be able to work out the precise period of the end. No matter what we see now, the end is going to take us by surprise. We should obey Jesus and prove ourselves ready. No one knows when a thief plans to come. Jesus stated that it was at an hour that "you do not think to be it", referring to his disciples. So let us to take note but be modest, sober and most of all, ready. So the question above is really timely.
Which scenario do you refer to here as needing to be questioned?
the scriptural picture as portrayed in Rev. 17?
the interpreted understanding and application that Jehovah's Witnesses currently hold in connection with Rev.17?
the suggestion that UN preparation for an attack on religion could be discerned from current political and ideological developments? And by extension, where we are in the stream of time relative to the start of the great tribulation?
This is quite right as the several uses of the thief and unknown hour metaphors in Scripture confirm.
However, why do you think that Jesus outlined detailed events in prophecy relating to end times?
Discuss the question from the title of the topic? Now that's a novel idea. 😊
It is a reasonable solution to see the 10-horns and the wild beast as either representing, or some part of the dominant world power at the time of the great tribulation, the fall of Babylon the Great, Armageddon, etc. And it is a reasonable assumption to see the prostitute as false religion. And it seems that God puts a thought into the heart of the ten horns and the heart of the wild beast to give their kingdom to this wild beast until some end predetermined by the God's words will have been accomplished.
Obviously. But is it the same as "biting the hand that feeds us" to discuss whether our current explanation of this chapter is reasonable? Is our end-time-scenario too sacrosanct to question in any way. Or is perhaps now the best opportune time to consider where our loyalties will lie if things seem NOT to be working out as expected? Or is perhaps now the best opportune time to consider the meaning of Jesus words about not being able to work out the closeness of the time of the end if things DO INDEED seem to be working out as expected?
As several people already know, I come at this issue from the perspective that Jesus warned us against trying to look at signs of the times to divine the closeness of the end. It will come as a "thief in the night." Some of us will answer, but we won't be surprised, or in the dark, as someone who is awake and prepared for the thief. That's true, of course, but not because we will be able to figure out the time or season in which the thief will appear. Not because we will be watching for some entity to call out "peace and security." It's because we as Christians will be both patient and ready at all times because we are always looking out that our motivations are pure. Peter says we stay ready by watching ourselves and the type of person we ought to be, and clarifies the motivations behind all our activity in 2 Peter 1:5-8:
5 For this very reason, put forth all earnest effort+ to supply to your faith virtue,+ to your virtue knowledge,+ 6 to your knowledge self-control, to your self-control+ endurance, to your endurance godly devotion,+ 7 to your godly devotion brotherly affection, to your brotherly affection love.+ 8 For if these things exist in you and overflow, they will prevent you from being either inactive or unfruitful*+ regarding the accurate knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
There have always been those persons who think they are doing a favor to fellow Witnesses, or perhaps also highlighting their own faith in the predicted scenario by watching out for any mention of "peace and security" by a Pope, a world leader, or a UN representative. The initial post in this topic goes to a lot of trouble to try to read between the lines for items coming from the UN that somehow indicate that "they" could turn against and attack religion at any time. I think this is unhealthy and unchristian for several reasons. But I've already gone into detail about this aspect in other posts in the past.
This doesn't mean the scenario is impossible, only that Jesus said it was wrong to look for such scenarios as a way to anticipate the closeness of the end or to try to predict the timing his parousia. They might create some fervor and anticipation about the closeness of the end, but they will produce an unchristian motivation.
And, as I've also said, it would not be honest for me to discuss the question at hand without also mentioning that I think the whole scenario should be questioned. And, as I've also said, I think as Christians we are under an obligation to question such scenarios as to whether they are Biblical or even useful.
There is a known thing going on behind the scenes, however, a majority of people do not know about such, I say this to you guys too as well as to Jehovah's Witnesses here, albeit, some people are aware of the situation hence the response from the Religious Movement seeking unity throughout the globe.
I am among those who know far too many things, the type of guy who is aware of the monster under the bed, so to speak. The only hint I can drop is money and oil as well as security and power at this point regarding nations, as for religion it is a conquest of peace and unity.
Keep your eyes on Israel and Saudi Arabia.
Is the UN preparing to attack Religion?
Just getting back to the main topic. The most relevant prophetic statement I am aware of relating to this question is here:
"And the ten horns that you saw and the wild beast, these will hate the prostitute and will make her devastated and naked, and they will eat up her flesh and completely burn her with fire. For God put it into their hearts to carry out his thought, yes, to carry out their one thought by giving their kingdom to the wild beast, until the words of God will have been accomplished." Revelation 17:16-17.
Leaving aside extensive argumentation on the interpretation of these two verses, Jehovah's Witnesses understand this to be describing the destruction of false religion at the hands of its long-time partner, the political element of human society.
"The ten horns" = those "movers and shakers" within the political set up (as opposed to "vassal" states) at the time these events occur.
"The wild beast" = the earlier referred to "was but is not" conglomeration of nations we currently know as the United Nations of which the "ten horns" are a prominent part.
"The prostitute" = said "Babylon the Great", the world empire of false religion, destined for complete destruction at the hands of the political powers.
"Their one thought" = preservation of national sovereignty at all costs. There has always been a rather tenuous balance in this element of the religion/politics relationship. In fact, the false charge of "sedition" constitutes a prime weapon in the anti-Jehohvah's Witness strategy employed by false religion. It has been a main component of it's murderous schemes to eliminate servants of Jehovah with the enlistment of political muscle.(Compare John 19:15: "We have no king but Caesar") However, in striking similarity to the failure of Haman's schemes at the time of King Ahasuerus as described in the Bible book of Esther, false religion is "hoist on it's own petar", (to borrow a Shakesperean idiom). This will involve a remarkable feature in that the political elements (particularly those dominant UN partners, more inclined to veto than agree) participate in an unreserved delegation of authority to their political figurehead, currently identified as the UN.
"God put it into their hearts to carry out his thought" = the crux of this whole matter. Observers today may well detect evidence to support their view of a rising anti-religious trend in UN attitudes to religion. But there may equally be those who would choose to argue a completely opposite view. Not to be overlooked is the view held by false religion itself at the time of it's destruction. This is indicated at Rev:18:7 "I sit as queen, and I am not a widow, and I will never see mourning". Rev18:8 adds "That is why in one day her plagues will come".
The destruction of false religion at the hands of it's one time political allies will be something to shock this system of things to it's very foundations. It will open the world stage for "a tribulation such as has not occurred from the beginning of the creation that God created until that time" Mark 13:19. Those blessed with the 'abundant true knowledge' characterising these" last days" have a comprehension of the world scene that is very different from the many who remain in "darkness mentally and alienated from the life that belongs to God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the insensitivity of their hearts." Eph 4:19.
So in answer to the question, probably not, as a body, although godless elements have been in it's composition since it's origin. This event will come "as a thief in the night", a development indeed, but something precipitated by Jehovah, at a time of His choosing, once the "good news of the kingdom" has been preached in all the inhabited earth, for a witness. Then the end will come.
Now is not the time to bite the hand that feeds us!
Ex-Bethelite: I have noticed statements from JTR and Anna that actually state just the opposite. I've said it many times, too, that it really is humanly possible to make all the prophetic conjectures that you wish, and then just be humble about it and state that we really don't know for sure about these things we are conjecturing about. In other words, it's possible to make conjectures and be 100% right about everything we state as long as we are humble, discreet, and not presumptuous. The GB could have said that they don't know for sure, but that they believe the UN will attack religion for certain reasons, and then give those reasons. None of us would have the right to be dogmatic. We would always be 100% right, because we only stated that it was our current belief -- our opinion. Of course, I don't demand that we admit when we are just "conjecturing." But the Bible says it's the best course to avoid presumptuousness and the Bible recommends being faithful and discreet.
This only proves your lack of understanding, with your own conjecture. As for Anna and JTR, I think there’s enough evidence out there to prove you wrong. But, as they defend your stance, I see where you would be obligated to defend them.
Ex-Bethelite: Your "word salads" imply so much that is incorrect that I won't bother to untangle them. But it is funny that you find a person who says none of us has a crystal ball, and that none of us should claim to have one, and then you claim that this person thinks he has a crystal ball.
I agree you use word salads to make every effort to come out looking good with your argument. Maybe someone else will buy what you’re selling? Just not me.
Ex-Bethelite: I didn't want you deleted and you didn't want you deleted. So you are like me in that regard. Someone went against the whims of people like you and me. However, you have repeatedly claimed that you have not been silenced because you merely had to create new versions of your name and new versions of several other supportive "characters" who can up-vote yourself and show derision to others. I agree with you that you have never actually been silenced. So this should not be an excuse for coming up with no evidence for your opinions. Your opinions are just fine. Many have been spot on. Some of mine have been merely opinions unsupported with evidence. Opinions on their own are not valid or invalid, just opinions. But if anyone shows evidence contrary to my opinion, I will ALWAYS adjust my opinion in favor of the evidence. This is one of those places where no one has to hold back in presenting either opinions or evidence or counter-evidence. So if you have evidence, great. But if you don't have any evidence, then please stop whining about how one or two of your "characters" were deleted for abusive behavior several years ago.
This is hilarious! The majority which is FALSE, but I think there’s enough evidence to prove you wrong once again. We can ask the librarian if it was just 1 or 2 or 28, or 100 times I was deleted, and my information erased to help people like you. Most recently, threatening to be “removed” by the librarian if I USE 1 specific word. And when you characterize abusive behavior that Anna, JTR, you, and many others contributed towards me? It just makes it more laughable lying about it and trying to justify the librarian’s actions of censorship, oppression, double standards, and much more. LOL!
Ex-Bethelite: I was only thinking about prophecies associated with dates and time periods like 1878, 1881, 1910, 1914, 1915, 1918, 1925, the mid-70's, the end of the century, the generation, etc. But I admit that there is one "prophetic fulfillment" in another category that comes very close. It's the best example available. I'm referring to the one that Knorr "predicted" about the League of Nations rising again as the United Nations. This one was not originally from the Watchtower, but from Christendom, but still the Watchtower should get credit for choosing to repeat it.
I understand your refusal to understand what prophecy means, and how you “deny” any of the dates mentioned by you just like any ex-witness out there, and how you blame the Watchtower for 1975 like Anna, JTR and every ex-witness out there that is blowing hot air to appease their erred perception, but tell me when did WW2, Korean War, Vietnam, Desert Storm, etc. become irrelevant in your eyes? Not to mention your misrepresentation of the Watchtower publicans to assert your false claims about those dates, only to appeal to the ex-witnesses at AD1914.