“A Great Storm Approaches” Part 9

The Image of the Beast

And the sixth (angel) poured out his bowl upon the great river, the [river] Euphrates; and the
water thereof was dried up, that the way might be made ready for the kings that [come] from
the east. And I saw [coming] out of the mouth of
the dragon, and out of the mouth of the
beast
, and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits, as if it were frogs: for
they are spirits of demons, working signs; which go forth unto the kings of the whole world, to
gather them together unto the war of the great day of God, the Almighty
. (Rev 16:12, 13)

From the forgoing text as well as from other related scriptures which we have examined viz. Isa 8:12
and
Nah 1:9, 10 we are assured that in time there will indeed be a confederacy formed between these
three elements, however presently the seas have not yet “
blown the safety valve”, and begun to boil
over, to overrun the shores, so the need for this alliance has not yet presented itself. Not to mention the
fact that any such alliance between the civil powers and the nominal church today would prove of little
value seeing as the churches in their present condition have very little influence over the people, they
have a hard enough time when meddling in politics convincing their flocks who to vote for.

Obviously as stated before something happens that changes things, that alters this equation, something
which restores the power and influence of the church over
the people (that is those under religious
restraint
), this change in the churches influence over the people will prove sufficient enough to convince
the civil powers that and alliance between the two would prove beneficial to both parties in their effort to
quell (restrain)
the sea class, those not under religious restraint who are boiling over into the streets.

Keep in mind the two sides forming for the battle of the great day, on one side will be gathered the sea
class consisting mostly of the poor, the down trodden, the disenchanted intermingled with extremists of
every fashion socialists, communists, anarchists, etc., on the other side the civil authorities,
governments, the rich, the influential, capital, religion? Yes religion!
Why you ask should religion be
sided with these and not the latter?
Because as the Pastor states,they have become so
identified with the world that their interests are bound up together, and thus their influence will
be given on the side of error and oppression, on the side of kings and capitalists from whom
they receive their support and upon whom they have become dependent
”. “Both parties are
aggressive; both are growing in numbers and in strength daily. Both are becoming more than
ever determined that they are in the right, and both are more than ever realizing that the trial of
their strength in the mighty conflict to come cannot be far distant
.”

But what of this thing which changes the equation?

“We now come to the consideration of a vision that relates to the closing events of the history of the
Protestant sects, and which doubtless up to the present time has had but a partial fulfillment. This is
generally recognized by all the later expositors, who see Protestantism's fallen condition and are separated
from it. This was the belief of Pastor Russell even up to his death in 1916. We quote one of his latest
recorded utterances to this effect:

"
When the Earthquake, or Revolution, so prominently mentioned in the Scriptures (Rev 16:18),
shall have come, that, no doubt; will be the time when the kings and the captains of industry, of
finance and of politics
will in self-defense greatly exalt the power of religious leaders. Then we
may expect that the Federation of Churches will exercise a power in the world such as has not been since
the days of Papal supremacy. In the symbolic language of Revelation, that will be the time in which the
'Image of the Beast' will have life, and work great wonders, threatening, commanding, in the name of
Heaven.-
Rev 13:11-18."--Z '15-3.

That Pastor Russell at that time believed that the "
Image of the Beast" had already begun to meet its
fulfillment some years previous to the time he wrote these words will be seen from the following language:

"We have already pointed out
a general organization of 'the Image of the Beast' effected in Aug of
1846 (
at the formation of the Evangelical Alliance), and are now presently waiting for what in the symbol
is referred to as the
'giving of life to the Image'."--Z. '05-99. (The Herald of Christ Kingdom, Page
37
)

And it was given to him to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast
would even speak and cause as many as do not worship
the image of the beast to be killed.”
(
Rev 13:15 NAU)

“The wording, “
image of the beast” is repeated three times in this verse. In ancient times when
something was repeated more than once, it was done so to add emphasis or show importance of
something. In this situation
the warning is to look out for the image of the beast. What was the
breath that is given to this image? We believe that the answer is found in the context of this very verse.
To give breath to something
means to give it life and in this instance this life would enable it (the image
of the beast) to speak judgment against all those who opposed it
. (Revelation Notes, Southern
Wisconsin
, Page 534)

Is this the thing which changes the equation, i.e. life given to the image?

It depends on how you interpret the Scriptures; there are several views with regards to this each
seemingly with scriptural support, but the question is, which one is correct? The foregoing warning
implies that it is imperative that we find the truth to the matter.  

In our next post we will present some interesting thoughts on the subject as quoted from the Pastor,
and then will follow with one of the various views held by the brethren, a view which seems both
scriptural and plausible, after which we shall present our view
.


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