How soon is Jesus coming back? Contrary to what others may say, there is actually proof that it will happen soon.
In 1948, Israel was reborn as a nation in just one day. This fulfills the prophet Isaiah when he says “Can a country be born in a day or a nation be brought forth in a moment? Yet no sooner is Zion in labor than she gives birth to her children.” This regathering to the land of Israel ended centuries of exile, called the Jewish Diaspora. The Bible talks about this when the prophet Ezekiel says “...whose people were gathered from many nations to the mountains of Israel, which had long been desolate. They had been brought out from the nations, and now all of them live in safety."
The rebirth of Israel is one of the most important signs of Christ return that has already taken place. However, the Bible teaches that the Roman Empire must be reborn as well. But how do we know this is true? Daniel 2 and Daniel 7 teach that there will be four empires that rise up one after another. Daniel 2 identifies the first empire as Babylon. Furthermore, imagery in Daniel 7 matches what we know of the second and third empires. This leaves the “fourth kingdom,” which is the Roman Empire. History tells us that this is empire #4, if Babylon is empire #1. The “fourth kingdom” is terrifying, ruthless, and violent, just as the Bible depicts it. This description matches what we know of the historical Roman Empire.
Roman Empire in 117 AD
Conservative Bible scholars are in general agreement that the fourth kingdom is the Roman Empire. The final ruler of the Roman Empire is defeated by God when he sets up an eternal kingdom. But there’s a problem. The Roman Empire doesn’t exist anymore. The final ruler of the Roman Empire was not violently defeated by God, as Daniel 7 describes. Furthermore, God did not set up a global kingdom, where all dominions serve him, as the Bible teaches.
Did God’s word fail? Let’s take a closer look.
Daniel 7 tells us that the Messiah comes on the clouds of heaven when the Roman Empire is about to be destroyed. “I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him.And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion,which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed.” This is the exact same wording Jesus uses to describe his second coming. Jesus says, "and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory."
The Roman Empire is defeated at the Second Coming of Christ. In order for the Roman Empire to be defeated at Jesus’ return, the Roman Empire must be reborn prior to the Second Coming of Christ. The end-time stage of the Roman Empire is what theologians call the “revived Roman Empire.” Well known pastor and theologian, John MacArthur, agrees with this, saying that “there will be a revival of the Roman Empire.”
We already know that we are in the last days because Israel has been reborn as a nation. Nevertheless, if end-time Israel already exists, it’s probably a safe bet that the revived Roman Empire isn’t far behind.
In 1957, six European nations came together and signed the Treaty of Rome. This formed the European Economic Community, which is the basis for what the European Union is today. The European Union has many features of statehood, including: a single currency, border-free travel, a Commission that proposes laws, and it’s own parliament.
What does the Bible say the revived Roman Empire will be like?
Daniel makes clear that the final phase of the Roman Empire is a “divided kingdom.” Daniel 2 states that, “And as you saw the feet and toes, partly of potter's clay and partly of iron, it shall be a divided kingdom, but some of the firmness of iron shall be in it, just as you saw iron mixed with the soft clay.” As a result, it becomes clear that the revived Roman Empire struggles with disunity.
The European Union struggles with disunity. The EU suffers division in almost every area of its policy-making processes. Many news articles in the past 5 years bear out this very strong trend. The first major example of this occurred in 2012, with the European sovereign debt crisis. This threatened the very existence of the euro as a currency, opening the possibility that the euro currency area could break up. Another strong example of the EU’s disunity took place in 2016, where the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union in its historic “Brexit” vote.
What else does the Bible say about the revived Roman Empire?
The Bible says the revived Roman Empire will be composed of a group of ten kings. Daniel 7 symbolizes these ten kings as ten horns on the head of a ferocious beast. Daniel 7 says, "As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings shall arise,...” Because of this, theologians anticipate a 10-nation alliance in the area where the Roman Empire was. Dr. John Walvoord, anticipated the “formation of the revived Roman Empire composed of a ten-nation confederacy.”
In 1995, a military alliance called the “Western European Union” became ten member states. This alliance was a separate organization from the EU, but worked closely with it. The EU agreed to use the Western European Union as its “military arm.”
So what’s the key takeaway?
The European Union is the revived Roman Empire. How do we know this?
- Reason #1: The EU exists at the same time as end-time Israel.
- Reason #2: The EU is a divided kingdom.
- Reason #3: The EU’s military arm was composed of a core group of 10 countries.
The final ruler of the revived Roman Empire is called the Antichrist. The Bible is very clear that the ten kings give their power and authority to the Antichrist. However, the Western European Union actually already consolidated into the EU. After transferring all of its functions to the EU, the Western European Union closed down. By 2010, all of the Western European Union functions had been taken over by the EU. This means that if the Western European Union countries were the ten kings of Bible prophecy, then the Antichrist is already here.