Modern-Day Preoccupation with the Supernatural
The 20th and 21st century obsession with the supernatural is simply astonishing.
Books, comic books, television, and particularly movies endow super heroes and super villains with mystical powers enabling them to transcend the natural and perform superhuman feats—both good and bad—that keep their fictional followers and real-life audience in awe.
For the most part, the good guys like Superman, Batman, Spiderman, and Wonder Woman are ordinary people who have been mysteriously gifted with extraordinary abilities to do battle with the bad guys and save the world (Superman’s amazing powers were possible only because he ended up on Planet Earth). Some of them come in teams, like The Fantastic Four. Most of the supernaturally imbued villains are people who have been transformed abnormally by demonic forces into twisted and perverted beings, or have ascended from the underworld, or have returned from the grave, or all of the above.
To you recall how Frankenstein, Dracula, and the Mummy made their entrance? In some fashion or another, they all returned from the dead. And since their debut, they keep coming back and back and back!
On June 9th, yet another remake of The Mummy was released by Universal Pictures, starring Tom Cruise, Sofia Boutella, Russell Crowe, and others. Though I may have missed a couple, in a brief online research of Mummy movies, I counted 14 of them. With four more spin-off films called, The Scorpion King. The original Mummy was played by Boris Karloff, followed by Lon Chaney, Jr., Christopher Lee, and others.
In the latest release, the Mummy is a woman, Princess Ahmanet—an ancient Egyptian goddess played by Sofia Boutella. The film includes another horror film character, Dr. Jekyll (and Mr. Hyde), played by Russell Crowe. And, of course, there are a few zombies wandering about. Yet, the underlying premise of The Mummy and other films like it is that the antagonist returns to earth in bodily form; albeit in some cases, going back and forth between the visible and invisible.
After using the example of the movie Rosemary’s Baby in Eye of Prophecy article, Satan in Bodily Form … When and Why? Part II (posted 11-19-16), I go on to say (excerpt in italics):
Later, came The Exorcist in 1973.
Then another box-office smash, The Omen; this time concentrating on the Antichrist and his infamous number, 666. Released in 1976 it featured Gregory Peck and Lee Remick, whose adopted child, Damien, wasn’t just bred by Satan. He was actually the Antichrist. Three more Omen movies followed the original.
Several TV shows are currently carrying this ghoulish torch of the paranormal, such as The Walking Dead and Salem.
Dozens, if not hundreds, of novels, films, and television shows and documentaries about Satan, demons, and the powers of darkness have been released during the last 70 years. Across the board, they are Biblically inaccurate and scripturally illiterate. Nevertheless, Rosemary’s Baby is somewhat on point concerning the ancient cohabitation of fallen angels with women on the earth before Noah’s Flood. In part, this was covered in last week’s article. As indicated, this unholy, depraved breeding was abruptly halted when the fallen angels were imprisoned in the Abyss.
No matter the degree of fantasy found in Hollywood or televised productions, the intriguing fact remains that the 20th & 21st centuries have seen an unprecedented rise in the portrayal of the supernatural, made progressively more fantastic through special effects. This includes many depictions of demons and Satan, himself, in a material visible body.
Writers, producers, directors, and actors are inadvertently grooming hundreds of millions left behind at the Rapture to view the paranormal as normal, the supernatural as natural, and the spiritual as physical….
We Were Meant to Know the Identity of Antichrist Because He Will Not Be a Modern-Day Born Man
The question posed in the first half of today’s title (Who is the Antichrist?) has been answered in great detail in my book, Out of the Abyss and subsequently through several Eye of Prophecy articles in the category of Antichrist. I ask it again mostly for the benefit and curiosity of those who may be visiting Eye of Prophecy website for the first time. This week’s article is also a refresher to those who have read the book and/or articles; to further affirm this amazing, but, nevertheless, historical and future fact. Therefore, I will repeat the answer to the question: Who is the Antichrist?
He is none other than the Roman Emperor Nero.
The second half of this week’s title (How Will He Appear?) also has been thoroughly covered in Out of the Abyss and several Eye of Prophecy articles. With the pivotal point mostly from where he will reappear—the Abyss; or the manner in which he will appear … suddenly rising from a literal sea (Revelation 13:1). Today the how of his arrival is focused on his actual bodily reappearance, with parallel Biblical examples given to demonstrate that Nero’s return from a 2000-year absence is not nearly as far-fetched as it may sound. That it is fact, not fantasy; such as a fictional Egyptian “goddess” returning from the grave.
Pretty much everything pertaining to identification and documentation (Scriptural and historical) that Nero was and will return as the Antichrist is covered in Out of the Abyss, published in February, 2011. Subsequent Eye of Prophecy articles about the Antichrist normally emphasize one passage (of several) or feature of the Antichrist. Scriptural references to the Antichrist (also called the little horn, ruler, king, man of lawlessness, and beast) can be found in Daniel Chapters 7, 9, & 11; II Thessalonians Chapter 2; Revelation Chapters 11, 13, 16, 17, & 19, with chapters 13 & 17 presenting convincing clues as to his biography and identity.
Today, we want to concentrate on the mind boggling, but true fact that Nero will return in his original body! A body that will be visibly scarred from the fatal wounds that killed him; nonetheless, that same body. We’ll look at Bible passages that demonstrate God’s power and plan of bodily resurrection, removal of two men from the earth without dying, and actual bodily appearance of Moses and Elijah with Jesus—in order to correlate and compare those miracles with Antichrist Nero’s continued existence in the Abyss. In conclusion, we’ll examine one other more obscure reference to Antichrist. It is found in the book of Zechariah; one that fits perfectly with Nero’s fatal wounds that ended his life on earth, only to be revived and placed bodily in the Abyss.
Here is another excerpt from the Eye of Prophecy article quoted earlier concerning most of those left behind at the Rapture and their reaction to the real-life return of the Antichrist beast who first appeared in the 1st century:
Instead of believing and, thereby, giving their loyalty and life to the true risen Messiah, Jesus; they will embrace a Roman Emperor (Nero) in what they perceive is his miraculous return from the grave. They will ignore or reject the real evidence prophesied 2000 years ago by John that their “superman” actually returns from the Abyss; having been struck down in his (perverted) prime of life by Christ. Then revived by the Lord and confined to the Abyss awaiting the time when God would release him. At about this same time, Satan will be permanently thrown down to earth in his real and tangible body, and will immediately extend his power and authority to Nero.
Those left behind at the Rapture will be mesmerized by a man who returns from the grave (as they see it … actually from the Abyss). Their initial incredulity will soon yield to the reality of what they are seeing; in part, because of the fictional fantasy images of paranormal phenomena being portrayed as almost routine in today’s New Age, literary, and entertainment circles.
Personally, I and millions of other believers firmly believe that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God. There are verifiable reasons to make this unequivocal statement; not the least of which are hundreds of fulfilled prophecies and numerous miracles that are truly supernatural—performed directly by God the Father and Messiah Jesus the Son of God or through prophets, apostles, and angels.
“Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God” (II Peter 1:20-21).
To remind us that many of God’s sovereign plans for the human race are achieved through supernatural events—past, present, and future—and, therefore, not to be so skeptical about a two-thousand year old man (Antichrist Nero) returning to earth in the same body in which he departed, let’s look at seven remarkable facts (realities) that include God’s transcendent power and implementation of his providential will. They are presented only in summary form, as all of them are thoroughly covered in my book Out of the Abyss; as well as in some prior Eye of Prophecy articles.
Fact #1: The Antichrist Had Already Lived and Died Before the Book of Revelation Was Written
Regarding Bible passages relating to the Antichrist, I have quoted one more than all the others. Yet, it bears repeating for two main reasons: (1) unless we understand what the text is telling us, then the logical and natural—but inaccurate—view that the Antichrist is a modern-day born man will continue to dominate Biblical eschatology with two erroneous results; (a) to assume that no one can know the identity of the Antichrist; (b) on the other hand to continue pointing fingers at modern-day world leaders as Antichrist candidates. (2) To fully grasp that the Antichrist’s arrival soon after the Rapture will NOT be his first appearance on this earth; it will be a reappearance (from the Abyss).
“Why are you so amazed? The angel asked. I will tell you the mystery of this woman and of the beast with seven heads and ten horns on which she sits. The beast you saw was once alive but isn’t now. And yet he will soon (suddenly) come up out of the bottomless pit (Abyss) and go to eternal destruction. And the people who belong to this world (many of those left behind at the Rapture), whose names were not written in the Book of Life before the world was made, will be amazed at the reappearance of this beast who had died” (Revelation 17:7-8, italics for emphasis, parenthesis mine).
Here is an excerpt from the last portion of my book commenting on the above passage:
“There is no question; the meaning of the verse is as irrefutable as anything can be. The beast had already died before John received this revelation. How else can this passage be understood? Is there any other way to see or read this verse? If some can’t let go of a contemporary Antichrist, then what will they do with this verse … and all the other passages that help refit the prophetic puzzle?
“John didn’t see the vision in the future; he saw it in the present—that hour of that day. The beast is past tense … no longer alive when John saw the vision. The beast isn’t born and doesn’t die in the future; he’s already dead. When will the beast become future tense? Correct: When he reappears from the Abyss. At the beginning of the Tribulation, the world will be amazed at the reappearance of the beast who had died. Will the beast die during the Tribulation? No, he died even before John saw him from Patmos.
“From there, it was a matter of some intensive research, study of Scripture, a lot of praying, and guidance from the Holy Spirit that reaffirmed the ironclad statement and meaning of this verse and of other verses that we’ve covered. However, when I discovered that many of our first, second, third, and fourth century brothers and sisters in Christ also tagged Nero as the man of lawlessness, the beast, and the Antichrist … well it’s like underlining, italicizing, and using bold print on a sentence that already has three exclamation marks!!!
“Invoking a comparison from a popular television program, we have refitted the prophetic puzzle and solved the mystery of the beast in the fashion of Cold Case files” (Out of the Abyss … Can the number of the beast be solved? Pages 271-272).
Fact #2: In Order to Come Up Out of the Abyss, the Antichrist Must First Be Confined to the Abyss
Despite its clear meaning, the following verse is often overlooked as pertaining to Christ and the Antichrist:
“Then the man of lawlessness will be revealed, but the Lord Jesus will kill him with the breath of his mouth and destroy him by the splendor of his coming” (II Thessalonians 2:8).
Nero was revealed as the man of lawlessness when he unlawfully usurped the Roman throne as Caesar in 54 A.D. The ultimate cause and origin of Nero’s death was the command given by Jesus (breath of his mouth) … accomplished by his sovereign will. This was no different than several incidents in the Old Testament and a few in the New Testament (Ananias, Sapphira, and Herod Agrippa), in which the Lord prematurely (from a human viewpoint) struck down those who had crossed the divine line of God’s tolerance. On some occasions, the Lord directly and divinely shortened the life of the offender. Other times, he used natural means such as war or execution or disease.
(“Instantly, an angel of the Lord struck Herod with a sickness, because he accepted the people’s worship instead of giving the glory to God…” Acts 12:23).
In Nero’s case it was by the sword of his servant, as Nero couldn’t finish the job of doing himself in.
Because the Antichrist beast had died before John wrote the book of Revelation and because this same man would reappear from the Abyss, the following logical conclusion is exceedingly evident (italicized for emphasis): Jesus revived Nero and banished him to the Abyss soon after Nero died.
Since then Nero (and Satan) awaits his release from imprisonment to captivate the attention and allegiance of post-Rapture unbelievers. To this day, the burial site of Nero is a mystery to historians. Although on the opposite end of the good/evil scale of things, this is very similar to the death and burial of Moses, which we will get to later. Moses was the Law-giver. Nero was the ultimate Law-breaker … “the man of lawlessness” (II Thessalonians 2:3).
Fact #3: Only Embodied Beings Inhabit the Abyss
These beings are fallen angels who took on human form before the Great Flood. They were banished to the Abyss because of their excessively despicable and depraved behavior. (See Genesis Chapter 6).
“And I remind you of the angels who did not stay within the limits of authority God gave them but left the place where they belonged. God has kept them securely chained in prisons of darkness, waiting for the great day of judgment” (Jude 1:6).
Most fallen angels (demons) are free to roam the heavens and the earth, but they are spirits … spiritual bodies in another dimension. Whenever they can—as allowed or even invited by people who delve into the occult—they will inhabit (possess) human beings. For the most part, they have learned their lesson not to take on human form. Donning human form is reserved only for the good angels; even that is infrequent.
As much as they would like to possess people, fallen angels absolutely dread the thought of being banished to the Abyss along with the grossly wicked angels already there.
Addressing the demon possessed man in the region of Gerasenes (east side of the Lake of Galilee):
“Jesus demanded, ‘What is your name?’
‘Legion’ he replied, for he was filled with many demons. The demons kept begging Jesus not to send them into the bottomless pit” (Luke 8:30-31).
Do you remember what happened next? Jesus granted their wish and let them enter into a herd of pigs!
Pigs? Yes, pigs … the demons would do anything to remain in a body or two, even pigs. So much for their wish. The demonic possession was too much for the pigs. They ran headlong into the lake and drowned!
In Out of the Abyss, I wrote:
“Reminder: the beast comes from the Abyss. The demon locusts are released from the Abyss with a body, albeit, a frightening one. Actually, other than being fearsome, the body of these beasts as described in Revelation 9 may be somewhat regal. Read for yourself the description given, and then decide about their appearance.
“In all of Scripture, there is only one reference to a human being coming from, therefore, having been placed into the Abyss. That man is the man of lawlessness, who is the Antichrist, who is the beast of Revelation. Such an honor!” (Page 232).
(Fairly accurate/realistic depiction of the demons described as locusts. Match up the imagery in Revelation Chapter 9 with the above painting)
Fact #4: The Bodily Resurrection of Messiah Jesus
The very heart of the Biblical Gospel of salvation is the (Virgin) birth, life, death, burial, and resurrection of Messiah Jesus in human form. Only a sinless man could provide the substitutionary sacrifice required by God, necessary to pay the ultimate price for atonement of sin and pardon of sin’s eternal penalty. And the fact remains that Jesus arose from the dead in his same body, albeit a body equipped to live forever. Jesus was the first to be given this wonderful everlasting glorified body (see I Corinthians 15). Yet, a literal body that can be seen, heard, touched, and recognized.
*Note: As a reminder, these facts (realities) are presented as precedents and parallels in order to demonstrate that Nero can and will return at the appointed time in the same body in which he lived, died, and was then revived by the Lord. Although many left behind at the Rapture are being prepared for such a staggering event through media bombardment with supernatural fantasies; they will, nevertheless, be astonished that it really could happen. They won’t be seeing some Hollywood illusion on a movie screen. Whether in person or via television and internet, they will be looking at the real thing—a Roman Emperor whose fame and figure will be right before their eyes.
His name is already undergoing a popular resurgence.
As indicated in three prior Eye of Prophecy articles, Nero’s name has been revitalized, advertised, propagandized, and otherwise paraded through numerous venues in just the past few years. See, The Beast and His Name (posted 10-5-13); Nero & The Remarkable Revival of His Name (4-1-17); Antichrist and Anzio … What Do They Have in Common? (4-29-17).
(One of many products or media productions that bear Nero’s name)
All seven of these Biblical truths (four already covered and three that will be postponed until next week’s article) are examples of bodily resurrection or preservation that will correspond to an astounding prophetic passage in Zechariah as alluded to earlier in today’s article. Which is: The Physical Wounds (That Leads to the Death) of Antichrist Nero Are Foretold by this Old Testament Prophet!
Personal Note Summary
My original intention was for this week’s Eye of Prophecy post to be one article, not a two-part series. Sometimes multi-part articles are intentional; other times they are spontaneously necessary when I realize there’s not enough space/time for that article to adequately cover the subject at hand. Of the 205 Eye of Prophecy posts to date, 65 are multi-part articles (about one-third).
The disadvantage of a two or more part article is the potential of disrupting the continuity (big-picture progression) of the main topic. Or for visitors to read only one of the parts.
The whole idea of editing is to, of course, make the content and style even better. Editing includes changes, clarifications, and corrections that are not only grammatical, but also entire sentence or paragraph modifications, deletions, or relocations in the article. I normally do three edits of my original draft. With the first two focused on content and the final edit on punctuation and proofreading. Sometimes there are still (minor) mistakes in the posted article!
I suppose the ultimate goal of editing is to shorten the article without significantly shortchanging the core content and theme. Alas, when I began editing of this week’s post, it kept getting longer! No choice but to make it Part I & II.
Please don’t miss next week’s article in which three more parallel examples will be given to illustrate comparatively that Nero’s actual reappearance on Planet Earth will be in the same body in which he died. As opposed to an imposter or some sort of virtual reality made possible by super technological special effects like holograms or whatever. Among other things, Nero will arrogantly flaunt the scars of his deadly wounds as proof of his return from the grave; in order to imitate and supersede the true risen Messiah Jesus who lovingly invited Thomas to see and touch the nail prints in his hands and the spear wound in his side.
In one of my very favorite scenes in all of Scripture, Thomas replied to Jesus’s invitation to touch the wounds:
Things to Ponder
As a prelude to next week’s Part II article, think about Enoch and Elijah. Both were taken from the earth while they were still alive.
“When Enoch was 65 years old, he became the father of Methuselah. After the birth of Methuselah, Enoch lived in close fellowship with God for another 300 years, and he had other sons and daughters. Enoch lived 365 years, walking in close fellowship with God. Then one day he disappeared, because God took him” (Genesis 5:21-24).
“It was by faith that Enoch was taken up to heaven without dying—he disappeared, because God took him. For before he was taken up, he was known as a person who pleased God. And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him” (Hebrews 11:5-6).
“When they came to the other side, Elijah said to Elisha, ‘Tell me what I can do for you before I am taken away.’
“And Elisha replied, ‘Please let me inherit a double share of your spirit and become your successor.’
‘You have asked a difficult thing,’ Elijah replied. ‘If you see me when I am taken from you, then you will get your request. But if not, then you won’t.’
“As they were walking along and talking, suddenly a chariot of fire appeared, drawn by horses of fire. It drove between the two men, separating them, and Elijah was carried by a whirlwind into heaven” (II Kings 2:9-11).
Also think about Moses and Elijah appearing with Jesus.
“Six days later Jesus took Peter and the two brothers, James and John, and led them up a high mountain to be alone. As the men watched, Jesus’ appearance was transformed so that his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as light. Suddenly, Moses and Elijah appeared and began talking with Jesus” (Matthew 17:1-3).
You’ll see next week that they appeared on the Mount of Transfiguration in their original earthly bodies … how and why!
Likewise, Antichrist Nero’s reappearance from the Abyss (in his original body) will stun an unsuspecting world. Their amazement will result in actual worship of this wicked Roman emperor.
Believe me; better yet, believe the Bible: You don’t want to be left behind at the Rapture.
Some will choose the true Messiah Jesus over the false messiah, Nero; but will do so on pain of deprivation, torture, and death. Most will opt for the deceitful temporary enticement of a New Age Pax Romana type paradise promised to them by what will appear to be a superman savior. Only for the post-Rapture world to come crashing down around them through the most massive apocalyptic catastrophes of all time.
Jesus, himself said so:
“For there will be greater anguish than at any time since the world began. And it will never be so great again. In fact, unless that time of calamity is shortened, not a single person will survive. But it will be shortened for the sake of God’s chosen ones” (Matthew 24:21-22).