Friday, September 5, 2014

ENP Theory Unaffected by New EU High Rep

Not Again!

Federica Mogherini, New EU Foreign Policy Chief

A Quick, But Relevant, Parable 

There were once two poor men, named Bill and Frank. Both were promised one billion dollars each from a very rich man with a kind heart. Both received a letter in the mail, outlining when this generous rich man would pay them the money. The first man, Bill, was elated when he received his letter in the mail. It promised him the one billion dollars in exactly 10 months time. He was elated. Now, he could finally get proper treatment for a chronic medical condition. He could also pay off his terrible debt. 

The second man, Frank, received his letter in the mail. It promised that in 100 months time, he would get the billion dollars. He too was elated, because he was poor. Now, he could finally pay for his daughters medical bills, and pay off his mortgage. 

But there was a problem. Even though both letters were sent from the rich man, Bill's letter got a small smudge on it. This small smudge blotted out just one "0" on the letter. In fact, both Bill and Frank were supposed to receive the money in 100 months. That very small smudge on Bill's letter hid the extra "0" on the number of months until the payday. So really, Bill was supposed to receive the money in 100 months, just like Frank, not in 10 months.

When Bill discovered this, he was filled with terrible grief and disappointment. For 8 more years, he would be stuck with terrible debt, and not afford money for his chronic medical condition. Furthermore, he would still be struggling with debt for those 8 years. 

...But Frank was still happy. He was delighted that in 100 months, he would be able to afford everything he could ever need. 

So even though Frank and Bill received the money at the same time, Bill was sad, but Frank was happy. 

The Interpretation of this Story

The EU has caused us a lot of grief. We had the perfect theory with Javier Solana. There was a ten nation military alliance in Europe. Furthermore, after it was ten nations, he entered the scene later. This seemed very much like Daniel 7, where the little horn arrives on the scene after the ten are present. Furthermore, while he was gaining power among these ten, he launched the first ever 7 year treaty with Israel. This was very reminiscent of Daniel 9:27, where theologians have believed the Antichrist will make a treaty with Israel for seven years. 

But he didn't pan out. He was replaced by Catherine Ashton, who, to her credit, cannot be the Antichrist, because she is a woman. The seven years passed, and there was nothing. The next seven year period started, and that resulted in nothing as well. Furthermore, they selected yet another woman, Federica Mogherini, as the EU foreign policy chief. 

This has caused us all more of our share of grief and disappointment.

I admit, I am spoiled by the Javier Solana theory. Nothing can live up to it. It's a man spending hundreds of dollars on a woman on the first date. How can he possibly live up to that standard on future dates?

The failure of Javier Solana theory causes grief and disappointment. But when I show the theory, in its present, "weak" form, it still causes happy surprises among people. Even pre-tribbers are mildly enthused by the theory in some cases. People who have never heard of it at all are quite fascinated. 

That is why I think I am like Bill, and they are like Frank in my little story above. I need to be more like Frank. Imagine if I had never known anything about Javier Solana theory. What if, instead of learning about Javier Solana theory, I learned about the EU theory in its present form? Would I be sad? Of course not! I would be happy. May be not as happy as I was when I learned Javier Solana theory. But happy nonetheless.

The Roman Empire, Greatest Extent

Take your average pre-tribber interested in prophecy. Suppose he has read about prophecy from "old school" theologians. Suppose he accepts the idea that there will be a 10 nation confederacy in the end times, and that a leader of the revived Roman empire will make a 7 year treaty with Israel. Among "old school" theologians, these are pretty consistent ideas. 

Roman Empire II: 7-Year ENP

There are even several books in my house by different authors that espouse this idea. (Commentaries on the Old Testament, Daniel, books about prophecy). These are books my father had before I even became interested in prophecy. But if you look up their views on each of these things, there is a surprising degree of consistency. 

Now tell this pre-tribber that the framework of the EU's relationship with Israel is based on a repeating seven year treaty. Now tell him that the entire basis of Europe's defense program was founded on a 10 nation alliance. The EEAS website even says as much. To top it all off, tell him that the map of all the countries on the 7 year treaty looks like the Roman Empire. Now tell him that there is an EU job position that oversees both of these programs at once. 

Even this "bad" theory is better than what most prophecy people have been coming up with. 

10 Nation WEU: Historical Basis of EU Common Defense

The EEAS is headed by the high representative. Even the EEAS website says that the 10 nation alliance in Europe was the first step towards a common defense policy. Now the High Representative coordinates common security and defense policy. They are still weaker than the member states. But we know this will change as the High Representative gains more power, as they have been for the last 15 years. See link below to see how the page is laid out:

Click to Enlarge

Mogherini's Appointment Doesn't Affect ENP Theory

In my opinion, the theory is in no way impacted by Mogherini's appointment as EU High Representative. Here are the scheduled 7-year rotations. 

They have been looking for a new high representative to represent the EU's "one voice" in foreign policy. Furthermore, many think tanks and EU politicians have been decrying the state of the 7 year treaty. It is weak and they want someone strong to reinforce it. This all the more emphasizes the possibility that a future ENP cycle will be the framework for the Antichrist's final 7 year treaty. 

Click to Enlarge!!!!

This time, they appointed yet another woman to the EU foreign policy post. Mogherini's appointment isn't any worse for the theory than Ashton's was. As I will illustrate below, even if a man was nominated for the position this year (2014) he would have to run for two terms to be the Antichrist. The next ENP cycle doesn't start until the next high representative is appointed. See the chart above to see my illustration of this. On the bottom is the High Representative terms, on the top is the ENP cycles, and how they line up. 

Long Story Short....

Long story short, in my opinion, it doesn't matter if they nominate a man, or a woman for this term. Either way, they have to run for two terms to be the Antichrist, or someone else has to be in charge before the next High Representative term. 

Feel free to comment. I always welcome any comments, especially disagreement. :) 

Friday, July 11, 2014

July 16: The Fateful Day is Almost Here

This is the SECOND blog post I made today. If you want to see the first one, GO HERE. However, they do stand alone (you don't have to read the one to understand the other, etc.)

So the fateful day has almost arrived!
The EU Council will be choosing the new High Representative on Wednesday, July 16. The High Representative position is the Lisbon treaty's successor position to Javier Solana's "High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy." To see why I think this position is so important, see the overview RIGHT HERE. 

Not to mention this, the past EU High Representative had quite a few very conspicuous and weird 666 connections. To see a summary of those, go to this thread on Fulfilled . Surely, you can find a 666 connection to almost anyone you want to, if you look hard enough. However, the High Representative already did lots of unprecedented things that appeared to fulfill prophecy. It looked like a great theory, all by itself, without the 666 connections.  However, his 666 connections were so strong and numerous, that it was hard to believe that they meant nothing.

But alas, he retired, and was replaced by Catherine Ashton. Obviously, there is nothing wrong with a woman holding political office. But it is quite frustrating, considering there is no way on earth the Antichrist will be a woman. Also, Javier Solana stepped down and was replaced by a woman, very close to the midpoint of the first seven year treaty between the EU and Israel ever. (Again, if you don't know what I'm talking about, go to the overview RIGHT HERE. )

So now, that woman's term is almost up. The EU foreign policy chief has a 5 year term that is renewable once. Ashton didn't want to go for a second term, so she decided to step down at the end of her term. Her term expires in October or December. So they have to pick a replacement before then. Which is why all the heads of the EU countries are meeting on July 16 for a special EU Council Summit to decide the new High Representative, and the new EU Council President.

It looked for a while that the strongest candidate for the job was Radek Sikorski. If we think the Antichrist will someday hold the office of the high representative, he was the best candidate their was. He was also the strongest candidate in the EU. Here is a previous blog post on why I think so. He is very hawkish, wants to split EU and US defense alliances, is very outspoken against Russia, and wants to revitalize the 7 year European Neighborhood Policy. He also wants the EU to become a "superstate."

But he recently got caught in a scandal saying that his ties with the U.S. were "worthless." He also said some bad things about David Cameron. So a lot of analysts say that this really hurt his chances at becoming the next high rep. What is more, lots of think tanks and analysts are saying that the ENP is broken, and needs fixed by a new strong High Representative.

But it appears to be "business as usual" as one article said. When choosing the high rep, the heads of states are more worried about "ticking all the boxes." For example, the new commission president is a man, from Luxembourg, and part of the EPP party. Well, that means that the other jobs have to given to someone who is not a man, or EPP, and perhaps from a different region in the EU. This article on Europe Decides shows the incredible balancing act that the outgoing EU council president must perform in order to please everyone. He has to balance political party, gender balance, North-South balance, and so forth.

This is likely why the Italian foreign minister is the front runner to become the next EU foreign policy chief. She barely has any experience. But keep in mind, this didn't stop them from nominating Catherine Ashton as the last high rep. All the think tanks keep prodding the EU to actually choose a strong person, and get its foreign policy pulled together. But all of these cries are falling on deaf ears. They are more worried about ticking all the boxes than say, job experience, in a position that pays more than President Obama.

Please don't be confused! I have no problem with women holding political office! What is frustrating is that she can't be the Antichrist. And we might get two people in a row that are just non-starters.

Yes, emotionally this was/is pretty upsetting. I was very discouraged when I learned that they would likely choose Mogherini for the job instead of someone who could be the Antichrist.

However, Sikorski and Lajkak are still potential nominees. If you want to go to the Europe Decides website, there is a great article there about the "rubik's cube" that Herman Van Rompuy has to solve to please everyone and tick all the boxes. Sikorski is still a possible combination.

Herman's Checklist

Who knows what they will decide. Perhaps they will choose Sikorski, perhaps Mogherini, perhaps the Bulgarian woman (also high on the list). But as frustrating as this would be emotionally, the theory remains untouched logically. There is nothing at all about having the next high representative be a woman that would destroy the theory or hurt it in any way. At least, it won't be hurt any worse than it was in 2010, when Javier Solana was not the man we thought he was.

The "EU as revived Roman Empire" theory still stands the test of time. I will quote from my previous blog post that I made today:

The EU theory is a relatively simple theory. It explains all of the facts decently well. And all those facts are "pulled together" by one thing...the EU. The EU "unifies" lots of different facts about prophecy in a relatively simple way without too much forcing.
  1. Ten nation alliance does merger with the EU over several years
  2. EU has a "common purpose" in foreign policy (i.e. Common Foreign and Security Policy) (See Revelation 17:17 NASB)
  3. A high representative, whose job it is to be the person who carries out the "common purpose" 
  4. Lots of 666 connections associated with the high representative 
  5. Has a 7 year framework for building treaties with it's neighbors, including Israel
  6. Is a VERY divided kingdom
  7. When you add in the 7 year covenant countries, it even looks like the Roman Empire
What is the chances that NONE of these things mean what we think it means? What is the chances that they are all wrong?!?

If they nominate a woman, all that means is the Antichrist hasn't come yet, no more, no less. I have a hard time believing that the 666 connections don't mean anything at all. And prophetically, the High Representative does fit best to be the Antichrist, as far as I can tell. They are the person designated to fulfill the EU's "common purpose" (i.e. common foreign and security policy).  And the new commission president doesn't really strike me as the Antichrist type.

All the analysts are whining about how weak this current ENP is. But we know in the Bible that the 7 year covenant will be a "strong" covenant. This last one was very weak, and the current one doesn't look much better. It has hardly stopped the Arab Spring or prevented any of the political disasters we have seen today.

The next ENP cycle is in 2020-2027. The next high representative will be nominated about one year before that begins (around 2019). So that would be a very fitting time for the Antichrist to come to the scene. He could ascend to power, then make a brand new 7 year covenant that actually has strength to it. Russia tensions could be getting worse, so there will be increasing frustration if the next EU foreign policy chief (2015-2019) does a bad job. There could be increasing fears about what to do with Russia. Furthermore, Britain will become even more keen on exiting (around 2017), since nothing is really changing. Other states could be interested in exiting as well. It also gives time to rebuild the Jewish temple.

There are five scenarios that could happen July 16:

Scenario 1: A woman is chosen for the top job. She is not the Antichrist. We have to wait longer.

Scenario 2: A man is chosen for High rep, but doesn't turn out to be the Antichrist. Same as scenario 1.

Scenario 3: They nominate a man who could be the Antichrist. He serves 5 years, then gets reelected for another 5 years, terminating his job around 2024 (close to the midpoint of the 2020 cycle).

Scenario 4: They nominate a man who could be the Antichrist. He does what the influential Carnegie Think tanks want him to do, and "reboots" the ENP in 2015.

Scenario 5: God surprises us, doing something totally different. His perogative.

I will be praying a lot this week. I pray that we won't be made to wait again. But as others have told me, it is indeed up to him. 

Your How-To Guide for Building a Good End Times Theory

Building a Good End Times Theory

Pardon the ambitious title, but I would like to make a post about making a good end times theory. A loose definition for a theory is "an explanation that best accounts for all the facts we have."

We make end times theories based on Scripture, and see how those line up with world events. Indeed, the "EU as the end times Roman empire" is an end times theory, but one that I believe is strongly based on Scripture. 

We used to have an end times theory on who the Antichrist was. We thought that theory was really good. But the theory, at least as it was formulated at the time, turned out to be wrong.

Obviously, we are all interested in the truth, even if that leads us to inconvenient places. What we need to use, when analyzing end times theories, is criteria for a good theory. The characteristics of good theories in general are actually the criteria we need to use for building end times theories.

Building a Good Theory: An Example from Christian Apologetics

So what are the characteristics of a good theory? Christian apologist Dr. Michael Licona, who studies the resurrection of Jesus, has a pretty good list in my opinion. You will find each of these criteria throughout philosophy journal articles, but he does a nice job of making a good comprehensive list. Here's his list:

Characteristics of a Good Theory
  1. Explanatory scope - does the theory provide a decent explanation of all the facts, or just some of them? Example: "Jesus disciples hallucinated him after his resurrection" does not have good explanatory scope, because it doesn't explain other details, such as the empty tomb. It leaves loose ends "hanging." 
  2. Explanatory power - does the theory provide a good explanation of all the facts, or do we have to force it? Example: "Jesus resurrection story is just a metaphor" does not have good explanatory power. Even though it explains all the details, it doesn't explain them very well. 
  3. Plausibility - is this theory likely, given other background information we have about the same subject? Example: "which is more likely, Jesus resurrection, or multiple simultaneous group hallucinations occurring to several different types of individuals?" Though people don't rise from the dead on a regular basis, multiple group hallucination seems even more "impossible" than a resurrection. 
  4. Less ad hoc (ad hoc means contrived) - does the theory have to make up other facts out of thin air, just to explain this theory? How much does it "force it?" Example: "Jesus didn't rise from the dead, his long lost twin brother stole the body, then pretended to be Jesus in front of his disciples." 
  5. Illumination - Does our theory answer other questions about other subject matters and open up other areas of inquiry? Example: does Jesus resurrection help us answer other questions as to why the early Christians behaved the way they did? Yes it does. 
  6. Simplicity (this is not on Licona's list, but its very important) - is the theory the simplest explanation of all of the facts? Example: "Disciples hallucinated Jesus after his death, but someone else stole the body" is not a very simple theory, because it has two different explanations, instead of one. 
  7. Falsifiable/testable (this is not on Licona's list, but its also very important) - can you at least, in principle, prove the theory wrong? Example: "Jesus disciples hallucinated the resurrection of Jesus" is very UN-falsifiable because there is nothing you could say to prove it wrong. Imagine someone using a "hallucination defense" in a court room, and claimed that all the witnesses to their murder were merely hallucinating. What could you say to prove them wrong? It would be really hard, because the theory is in principle, permanently safe. 

Source for this list.
I remember reading about many of these when taking my philosophy of science class (which, as you can guess, focuses a lot on what a good theory is). But Licona does a great job of listing all of them together. Dr. Licona often debates people who do not believe in the resurrection. Usually, his opponent has some other theory to explain the historical facts, other than the resurrection. What Licona does in debate, is show how the resurrection "theory" meets all 5 of this criteria much better than the opponents theory (i.e. the disciples stole the body, the disciples hallucinated Jesus after his resurrection, etc.) He does a fantastic job, and is probably one of the best experts on the resurrection today.

So How Does this Relate to Prophecy? 

According to philosopher Richard Swinburne, the best theory is the simplest explanation that accounts for all the facts. As you can see, Richard Swinburne's definition is basically a shorter version of Licona's. These are the things we need to keep in mind when evaluating all theories in life.

...And they are the things we need to keep in mind when evaluating a theory about prophecy.

Solana Theory was a Great Theory for Awhile

When making a theory about who the Antichrist is, or prophecy in general, we need a simple theory that accounts for all the facts that doesn't force the details (i.e. is not ad hoc). Also, it needs to be "testable." There has to be some way to prove it wrong.

The original ENPI/WEU/666 theory was a good theory. It was simple and "unifying." It explained all the facts quite well and everything seemed to "fit together" pretty good (i.e. explanatory scope). It also had very good "predictive" power. It was "testable" in that it could be proven wrong. All we had to do was wait for the midpoint.

But the theory's validity took quite a hit when Javier Solana retired before the midpoint. The theory was still simple, unifying, and explained all the facts, but it involved a lot more "force fitting." It became much more "ad hoc" (i.e. contrived). We had to postulate an additional fact that wasn't supported by any other evidence. We had to suppose Solana would not retire, despite having all the evidence say that he would. Furthermore, it was no longer testable or falsifable after the midpoint. 

Is The EU Theory a Good Theory?

While we may have been wrong about Solana, I don't think we are wrong about the EU. I think the EU theory is very well-supported, especially if we set it up to make "modest" claims.

The EU theory is a relatively simple theory. It explains all of the facts decently well. And all those facts are "pulled together" by one thing...the EU. The EU "unifies" lots of different facts about prophecy in a relatively simple way without too much forcing.
  1. Ten nation alliance does merger with the EU over several years
  2. EU has a "common purpose" in foreign policy (i.e. Common Foreign and Security Policy)
  3. A high representative, whose job it is to be the person who carries out the "common purpose" 
  4. Lots of 666 connections associated with the high representative 
  5. Has a 7 year framework for building treaties with it's neighbors, including Israel
  6. Is a VERY divided kingdom
  7. When you add in the 7 year covenant countries, it even looks like the Roman Empire

All of these facts aren't strewn around to different people or countries. They all are united in the EU. Furthermore, when stated more modestly, it is a very good theory that isn't too ad hoc. Many of the things we would expect from the end times Roman empire are found in the EU. After all, what are the chances that not just one, but not just two, but ALL of these facts are found in ONE organization, and it not be the end times Roman Empire? I think we are still on the right track

What I'm saying is, even if a woman gets elected on July 16, the "EU theory" remains untouched. It is still a fantastic explanation of the facts, even though it is taking a lot longer than expected to fulfill. Which leads me to my next blog post...

I will be having two blog posts today. This is probably the less interesting one. But I think it's important to look at the features of a good theory. 

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Quora: My Answer to: "Christians: How Soon Do You Think Jesus is Coming Back?"

Another Social Media Site We Could Use for Influence

Here is my answer to the question "How soon do you think Jesus is coming back? on Quora.

Quora is a great question and answer site, I highly recommend it. "Justasheep," whom I'm sure most of you know, has an account as well.

I used to only use it for Christian apologetics purposes. The site has a strong non-religious and socially liberal bent, so I thought they would dismiss end times stuff. But apparently the Christians on there are reasonably receptive to good news about Jesus' return.

(Granted, their receptivity may be skewed by the fact that I used lots of Quora credits, to promote the answer. So the amount of apparent "receptivity" to eu-related prophecy ideas may be a little skewed by the fact that I promoted it to death and made the answer come up a very disproportionate amount in their feed. That is my way of giving my unnecessarily long-winded answer much more attention than it deserves!)

Anyhow, if you are knew to my blog, the Quora answer should summarize what this website, EU Prophecy News, is all about, as well as one perspective on what the wider movement is about.

Perhaps we can use this as yet another means of outreach, if a major event happens, along with using each of our blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc. I think Quora is classified as a social media site.

The High Representative and July 16

Sorry for the slow updates. I'm waiting for the European Council meeting on July 16 when they decide the EU Council President and the High Representative. Once they make these decisions, I will post in some form or another. As you likely know, I am part of a group that regards the High Representative office as potentially prophetically significant.

It looks like Radek Sikorski is still in the running, but some people think his recent tape scandal cost him the job. Lots of others think that a woman will get one (or both) of the positions, but the main complaint is that the leading female candidate from Italy lacks experience. But who knows. The last female candidate (Catherine Ashton) also lacked experience. They also complain that it's a southern country, and not willing enough to stand up to Russia.

I am very interested in seeing where this all goes. I hope we don't get severely disappointed. But yet, we have to have faith, no matter what. Who knows? Something really big could happen.

Keep watching!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Guess Who?

He is....

1) Widely tipped to be the next EU High Representative. At very least, among top three contenders.

2) Very hawkish on EU defence

3) Wants EU and US to separately manage their defence capabilities

4) Issued a statement two weeks ago, saying he (and two others) wants a stronger, more dynamic ENP, even with a free trade area for those who want it.

5) Wants the EU to become a "superpower"

6) Strongly opposes British exit from the EU

7) Has a very low tolerance for Russian encroachment in Ukraine, wants two NATO brigades deployed to his home country

8) Was part of 11 foreign ministers that called for an EU super president, European army, among many other things

9) Relatively young and articulate

10) Sits on Consilium Foreign Affairs Council

As we have learned, "name calling" is unwise. But there is nothing wrong with say.... "keeping an eye" on someone.........

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Next High Representative and Daniel 9:27

So I have been doing some thinking lately. Here is a brief review of where we have come so far....

The Antichrist....What Will He Do?

We all know that the Bible says that the Antichrist will confirm a covenant with many nations and/or Israel for seven years. Secondly, we know that he will rise to power after the existence of a ten nation confederacy in the geographic area of the Roman Empire. Finally, he will start off small, but during his rise to power, he will subdue three of these ten kings in this end times Roman empire. He will go on to set himself up as God in the temple in Jerusalem, and persecute the saints for 3.5 years. (See my section on End Times Theology for more detail into these subject matters).

The "Theory" to Rule Them All

Given this paradigm, the "WEU/REC666/ENPI" theory was quite promising. The Western European Union was a military alliance in Europe that reached ten members in 1995. After obtaining ten members, it's secretary general, named Javier Solana, took to the helm. He started off small in power, but increasingly took on a number of EU positions. He ultimately crafted a plan called the "European Neighborhood Policy" which ended up being confirmed with many nations, including Israel, for the specific length of 7 years. Furthermore, he jockeyed with three of those ten WEU nations, vying for control of negotiations with Iran. He successfully removed three as a negotiating obstacle. As if this wasn't enough, the documents appointing him to power were both titled "Document 666" and "Recommendation 666" respectively.

European Neighborhood Policy

Where To? 

This sounds fantastic on paper, but didn't pan out as hoped. But how could this all be a coincidence? It seems it cannot be, even with the failure of the original theory. Despite the disappointment, we have a ten nation military alliance that voluntarily dissolved itself in favor of the larger European Union. This is very reminiscent of Revelation 17:12-13, even if not a complete fulfillment. Furthermore, the EU has conspicuously decided to use a 7-year foreign policy program to handle its dealings with Israel and many other nations. This rotates every seven years, with a new 7 year treaty coming into force every seven years. (First one was 2007-2013. The next one went into effect 2014-2020.)

But our problem is, the first theory looks more "elegant" than the second theory. This does not bode well for theories in general, since the first one was strong, and it failed. Theories are supposed to have "explanatory power" and "simplicity," as well as not being "ad hoc" (i.e. sounding made up to fit the circumstances).

But perhaps.....just perhaps.....there is a way for this "round two" to fit without too much forcing of the details.

Boring, But Necessary, Political Stuff

Catherine Ashton is currently the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (needlessly long title, will call it the "High rep" henceforth). The high rep is the successor to Javier Solana's original high rep position. Unfortunately, the Antichrist is supposed to be a man. So Catherine Ashton does not qualify.

It is a very big coincidence, but it just so happens that the four EU presidencies (EU commissioner, rotating president, and council president, and parliament president) all get replaced this year. And so does the high rep. So now we have a lot of uncertainty as to who could come to the fore next, and a great opportunity for the Antichrist to come to power.

The Antichrist is supposed to rise to power after the ten kings are already present. This is easy enough to fulfill, since those ten WEU nations are already there, and have already consolidated their power into the EU, paving the way for someone to lead them.

But here is the problem. The Antichrist is supposed to also be the one who confirms the covenant for one seven, and stops sacrifice and offering halfway through. Problem is, the new High rep can't do this, since the next seven year ENP treaty (2014-2020), as already taken effect....So if they appoint the new high rep, it can't be the Antichrist, because they wouldn't have "confirmed" the seven year ENP, since the ENP would have been confirmed a year prior to that, in 2014....

.........Or can they???????

The passage states that the Antichrist will "confirm" or make a "strong" or "firm" covenant for seven years. Now, what we need is for someone who will become the high rep, to have done this already, in 2014.

And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator.” (Daniel 9:27 ESV)

Surprisingly, there are a gazillion different choices.

Stefan Fule is the person in charge of the ENP. So if he takes the High Rep job, it could be him. Oh but wait... The EU Parliament "confirmed" the ENP and approved it into existence, after the commission proposed it. The President of the EU Parliament is Martin Schultz, who is vying for one of the EU top jobs (commissioner). Oh but wait....the Council of the European Union had to approve the ENP into existence (very recently in fact, March 15). And the head of that is the Greek rotating presidency.

Oh but wait.....the Foreign Affairs Council is the one that makes the foreign policy decisions, so surely they voted the ENP into existence. The FAC is part of the "Council of the European Union." However, it is weird, in that it is also part of the External Action office, and is the only council "configuration" that is led by the High Rep. So that means, that any one of those foreign ministers on that Foreign Affairs Council, could be the "little horn" that starts small, approves the ENP, but goes on to become the High Rep, and then the Antichrist, and so on. (See more boring political details here.)

The Political Battle Begins

Of course, we all know how great the European Union is at making decisions....not. They are very divided, and appointments such as the new High Rep are fraught with political uncertainty and struggles. However, they have to have a new High Rep by December. So it makes sense, that everyone is bringing out their candidates to be part of the game. (See this big list of possible candidates)

At first, I thought that the candidates had to be strongly tied to the ENP to even matter. But perhaps this is easier than I thought, since anyone on the foreign affairs council least theoretically....fulfill the prophecy. And it happens that lots of these people vying for this top job are either past foreign ministers (meaning they have sat on the FAC), or tied to "confirming" the ENP in some way.

Also, this article, though six months old, is of interest to this discussion. I am not pointing any fingers, since it is all speculation at this point.

Come Lord Jesus

The Struggle

But of course, a lot still has to get done. The Jews can't even pray on the temple mount, let alone worship in a temple. However, progress is being made on this issue, especially due to the formation of a Knesset subcommittee to deal with religious freedom on the temple mount. Also, Egypt is facing some unrest, which is reminiscent of Isaiah 19. Russia is becoming a bigger threat, so this makes way for a bigger foreign policy figure. But still, perhaps this would all happen more "elegantly" if the next High Rep confirmed the next covenant (2021-2028), and made it much stronger than the previous ENP's. Indeed, people are indeed challenging the ENP's effectiveness, and calling for a reset. This doesn't sound like a very "strong" covenant to me. At the informal Foreign Affairs Meeting (The Gymnich) Catherine Ashton even invited the ministers to discuss if they thought the ENP was viable to be continued. (It seems they have decided that, yes it should be continued).

But I digress. Nothing is impossible with God.

For some reason, I very very very intensely yearn for all of this to happen. It gives me a sense of awe and wonder. All of this pulls very strongly at the heart. I hope God shows us a strong sign too. This world, even when we are not in poverty, is still wearying. This whole prophecy thing is a combination of intense hope and despair. I pray that God illuminates all this very soon.

As always, I welcome discussion or disagreement, etc.

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Divided Kingdom Will Be Forced to Unite

Surprise, surprise!

The new 7-year European Neighborhood Instrument went into force LAST WEEK on March 15. The Council of the European Union had to ratify it in order for it to come into full force. This is the reason its already March and they hadn't done it yet. It is effective from January 1, 2014 - December 31, 2020. The ENPI Info Center posted an article that it had come into full force.  

(Funny side note, ENPI Info Center also re-tweeted my tweet on the subject. I bet they wouldn't have done that, if they knew what we were up to lol.)

Is this the "covenant with many" spoken of in Daniel 9:27? We have all labored over this question for years. I wanted to headline with announcement, but I will come back to this subject at the end of this post.

The Divided Kingdom

Europe is still a divided mess that cannot agree on anything. Most secular political sources would strongly agree with this assessment. The EU has gone through a debt crisis for years, and now cannot even decide how to respond to Russia's invasion of the Crimean peninsula, other than weak sanctions.

God predicted that this empire would be a divided kingdom, at least in its initial stages. (Daniel 2:42-43). It even seems to be somewhat divided right up until the Antichrist takes full control. The EU's pathetic state of disunity is evidence we are in the first stages of this end times empire. The Eurocrats have been waffling around about foreign policy for a very long time. Indeed, it is the most divided aspect of their policies.

Now, Russia has invaded Ukraine and taken over the Crimean peninsula. Furthermore, they are building up troops on the Eastern portion of Ukraine. Both NATO and U.S. officials have noted they are extremely worried about this build up, because they have plenty of troops to invade. Furthermore, the some EU are very worried about Moldova (which has a Russian separatist region). A contender for the next EU Commission President wants to expedite the association agreement with Moldova, to deter against this fate.

The EU now has a solid dose of actual fear when it comes to foreign invaders. (At the very least, they have something they can overreact to). The NATO leadership is raising its rhetoric as well. Furthermore, Latvia and Lithuania (both EU countries) have Russian minorities. Considering Russia's justification for invading Ukraine (and their repeated lying about their intentions), the EU has reason to be worried. The West will want to have a strong voice to deal with foreign policy concerns from Russia.

NATO Secretary General: Anders Fogh Rasmussen

EU Power Vacuum 

How convenient then, that the new EU foreign policy High Representative is due to be appointed by the end of the year? Furthermore, Barosso Commission has been in charge for ten years. Both he and Ashton will retire, as well as the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy. This leaves a very big power vacuum if the Antichrist figure would like to swoop in.

This is a very ripe time for a new, more forceful, more boastful, foreign policy leader to fill the gaps. Furthermore, he has a great excuse to strengthen the EU's foreign policy, due to the renewed Cold War atmosphere that has descended over Europe.

The Conqueror Arises

Now, if my analysis is correct (see previous post), the Antichrist doesn't start off by attacking anyone. He actually begins by responding to an attack, likely from Russia or Syria. However, he would obviously have had to do something to provoke such an attack. Knowing his personality from the Bible, he has a very arrogant and conquering personality. Furthermore, the white horse of the apocalypse shows someone bent on conquest, but not necessarily causing any bloodshed in doing so (at least not until the red horse comes along). This may mean the Antichrist forms treaties and alliances, that inflame relations with Russia, resulting in a full on invasion. This could take the form of aggressively expanding NATO, expanding the EU, strongly reinforcing the ENP area with security guarantees, or any number of things.

Furthermore, this invasion could be precipitated if Russia attempts to annex part of an EU country (such as Latvia or Lithuania). Only time will tell.

The European Neighborhood Instrument

Back to the ENI. So if this regulation that just came into force is the 7-year  "covenant with many" (Daniel 9:27) long anticipated by students of prophecy and theologians, then we need to have a "he" that confirms the covenant. Obviously, he can rise to power into the High Representative position in 2015. But he still has to be the one confirming the covenant to be the guy. We have several options for who this could be. The Barosso Commission proposed the legislation, the Parliament (led by Martin Schultz) ratified it, and the Council (Greek rotating President) ratified it as well . Furthermore, there is a person solely dedicated to EU Enlargement and Neighborhood Policy (Stefan Fule).

So any number of people could qualify to be the "he" in Daniel 9:27. But when looking at these figures, not a lot of them strike me as the Antichrist type. So we will have to see.

Also, Pastor Brian found a good link from an EU think tank proposing a total reset of the entire ENP in 2015. This is obviously another way the 7 year covenant could come about.

The problem with all of these theories, is that we used to have a better theory (namely the Javier Solana/WEU/ENPI) theory. So I am not sure how convinced we should become by theories that are weaker than their predecessors, especially in prophecy related things. Most things in prophecy look better than they did 10 years ago, because geopolitical events continue to align closer and closer to their fulfillment. In this case, strangely, the opposite happened. I guess false alarms are the norm in prophecy, but my fear is we should not put too much hope into a theory that was weaker than a false alarm.

But then again, we got all this Russia stuff going on, and the EU has already gotten rid of the 10-nation alliance, and consolidated into the EU-beast. So it may be later than we think. I am hoping so, and would like to think so. So I am focusing very closely.

Thoughts? I invite discussion....

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Russia in Prophecy: The Forgotten Battle?

Daniel 11:40: The "Forgotten Battle?"
There are two possible instances where Russia plays a role in Bible prophecy. The first one is more sure, the second one is less so. 
But the second one may hold the key two this Ukraine situation, and the beginning of the entire end time scenario. It is the "forgotten war" in the end times, which may end up being one of the most important battles, because it kicks off everything else. But first, let's start off with the most well known instance where Russia plays a role in end times prophecy: Ezekiel 38-39.

Russia, Iran, and Turkey Invade to Plunder
It is agreed upon that Russia, Iran and Turkey will eventually invade Israel to plunder it for some reason (Ezekiel 38-39) Since Israel has recently discovered very large natural gas reserves, this might become of great interest to Vladimir Putin, since he supplies about 30% of Europe’s gas through the state owned gas company: Gazprom. I just found this article that says the EU is looking to Israel to reduce their dependence on Putin's natural gas. In fact, as of the past few days, a lot of news articles have been coming out saying how Israel is now going to be a major gas exporter, and even one of the biggest exporters in the world. Since Putin controls the gas, one can only imagine how frustrating a competitor would be, especially if the EU got most of its gas from Israel instead.

Israel's Tamar Gas Field

If they want to sanction him because of the Ukraine situation, then they will have to find an alternative way to meet their energy needs. Israel's massive gas discovery in the Mediterranean may prove to be just that. It may also give Putin a reason to "plunder" Israel, so he can again control the world's gas supply.
But….on the other hand…. there’s a second instance where many scholars believe Russia is acting in Bible prophecy. This is the part where this might be of significance.

Gazprom: Russian State Owned Gas Company

The Forgotten War? 
The Cold War Rises Again....and Turns Hot
Daniel 11:36-45 talks about an end times king that many interpret to be the Antichrist. It describes his military conquests. However, this conqueror is different, in that he does not start conquering by invading. It seems he is invaded my someone else, and uses that as an excuse to go attack everyone. Since the Antichrist leads a renewed Roman empire, the Antichrist has his kingdom based in the Mediterranean or Europe. It seems to be a confederacy (based on other Bible passages like Daniel 7), so this is why the European Union is so significant, especially since it exists at the same time as Israel, which has not existed for over 1900 years.

“At the time of the end the king of the South will engage him in battle, and the king of the North will storm out against him with chariots and cavalry and a great fleet of ships. He will invade many countries and sweep through them like a flood. He will also invade the Beautiful Land. Many countries will fall, but Edom, Moab and the leaders of Ammon will be delivered from his hand. (Daniel 11:40-41; emphasis added)
This passage says the Antichrist is attacked by the “king of the North” and “king of the South.” The “king of the South” is uncontroversially a reference to Egypt (it’s “north” and “south” of Israel). However, the “king of the north” is not so clear. Many Bible scholars think it is a reference to Russia. Many others think it’s a reference to Syria. There are pros and cons to each view.

President of Russia: Vladimir Putin

King of the North: Is It Syria?

The pros of the Syria view are that Syria is located in the region most historically associated with the "King of the North." Indeed, Daniel 11, before it talks about the Antichrist, refers to the Seleucid Empire as the King of the North. The Seleucid Empire was basically an expanded Syrian kingdom that stretched from Syria to Iran and Iraq. However, the disadvantage of the Syria view is that it is hardly capable of attacking someone as big as the EU even with Egypt's help (the king of the South). Long story short, Syria is just not as big and powerful as the old King of the North. 

King of the North: Is It Russia? 

The pros of the Russia view is that Russia is also located North of Israel, and definitely has the firepower to take on something as big as the Antichrist's European empire. Furthermore, Daniel 11 also talks about the Antichrist being alarmed by reports from the North. Many people believe these reports refer to the Gog/Magog invasion of Ezekiel 38-39, in which Russia attacks Israel. This would be an argument that it is Russia. Eminent prophecy scholar John Walvoord, among others, seem to favor the Russia view.

Russian Vessel Headed to Russian Naval Base in Tartus, Syria
King of the North: Is it both?

I tend to waffle back and forth as to what my favorite view is. However, I think a case can be made that the king of the North could be Syria, Russia, or even both. Keep in mind that it says that the king of the North attacks with a great fleet of ships. This implies very strong naval power. As we know, Russia has a very important naval base in Tartus, Syria. Furthermore, this whole Ukraine/Crimea debacle is partially about Russia's need to maintain control of the Crimean peninsula, since it is one of their only naval bases that does not freeze in winter. If you look at these two ports, you can see how they are virtually the only way to attack for the King of the north to attack the EU from the water, since the "king of the North" is north of Israel, not by the Atlantic ocean.

Russian Navy Outside Crimea
Of course this isn't just a northern invasion of the Antichrist. It's a two front invasion of the Antichrist, that includes Egypt as the "king of the South" attacking the Antichrist, along with the king of the North. Which is interesting, considering Egypt just signed a $2 billion arms deal with Russia. Some analysts believe Egypt is facing away from the US, and aligning with Russia. Which isn't a surprise, from a prophecy standpoint.

The EU Conqueror Rises to the Challenge
Political commentators have long noted that Europe is in disunity. The Bible actually seems to say that the end times Roman empire struggles with disunity in its early stages. Furthermore, some have said that Ukraine is proof that the EU's 7-year foreign policy program is a failure. Pastor Brian Roberts has even pointed out an article by an important EU think tank, that states that the entire 7-year ENP should get a reset in 2015, since it is not working. (Javier Solana even retweeted this proposal.) This could be the 7-year treaty with Israel talked about in Daniel 9:27 (since Israel is a participant). We will have to wait and see.
But right now, Putin is a threat to European interests, and perhaps even their security. In 2015, the foreign policy chief of the EU is set to be replaced, just in time for the possible ENP reboot. The EU foreign policy is widely believed by analysts to be incoherent and disjointed. Perhaps now is the time for someone to face the threats to European security head on.

In Revelation 6, it talks about the infamous Four Horsemen of the apocalypse. The first horseman rides a white horse, and conquers with a bow. Some analysts have interpreted this horseman to be the Antichrist, who conquers non-violently by proclamation and the show of military might, since no arrows are mentioned for his bow. This horseman is followed by the red horse, symbolizing war, and then a black horse that symbolizes famine. Finally, the pale horse of death takes 25% of the earth's population through all of these causes. It is notable that these horses lead up to one another and may cause one another. (A conqueror causes war, which causes famine, which causes mass death.)

Europe's foreign policy is in disarray, and lately all they have been able to do is write "strongly worded letters" to those they disagree with, and a few sanctions. Right now, the West is impotent and can't afford to break trade relations with Russia to punish them. Perhaps in 2015, a conqueror will arise, who can face these threats to European security head on, and make the West a credible force in the world. Perhaps he will do this by enhancing the security behind the ENP, expanding NATO, or enlarging the EU. However he does it, rest assured the "king of the North" will hate it, and respond accordingly.

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