First, Let’s Review The Number of the Beast, 666.
“Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for the number is that of a man; and his number is six-hundred and sixty-six” (Revelation 13:18, New American Standard Bible).
Some Bible translations convert the written expression of the beast’s number to three sixes (666). However, the original Greek text (as seen in the above NASB translation) spells out the number—a matter of utmost significance if the reader is to “calculate” the meaning of the number. Which is tantamount to solving the identity of the beast … Antichrist.
Only one other passage in the New Testament besides the one just quoted actually presses the reader to comprehend the clues; it, too, concerns the origin and identity of Antichrist. As follows:
“This calls for a mind with understanding: The seven heads of the beast represent the seven hills where the woman rules. They also represent seven kings. Five kings have already fallen, the sixth now reigns, and the seventh is yet to come, but his reign will be brief” (Revelation 17:9-10, italics for emphasis).
Earlier in Revelation 17:7, the angel says to John: “…I will tell you the mystery of the woman and of the beast with seven heads and ten horns on which she sits.”
Disclosure of this mystery was for the express purpose of identifying the man (in the image of a beast) by understanding that he was one of seven Roman Emperors, five of whom had already died—including the beast himself—in the 1st century when Revelation was written first and foremost to the believers alive then. Because Christ could have returned any day in the first century or thereafter, the beast must also be ready to reappear … from the Abyss where he had been confined after his death and revival.
(First Five Roman Emperors Known as Claudian Dynasty … Left to Right: Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, Nero)
Complete confirmation concerning the Antichrist’s identity is possible only when we correlate Revelation 13 & 17 with other pivotal passages on the Antichrist as found in Daniel 7, 9, and 11. Also, II Thessalonians 2 and a more obscure passage in Zachariah 11. Then combining all of these remarkable disclosures of the Antichrist (also described as a king, ruler, little horn, beast, and man of lawlessness) with 1st century Church and secular history.
That is precisely what was done in Parts II & III of my book, Out of the Abyss … can the number of the beast be solved? Followed by more elaboration found in several Eye of Prophecy articles under the category of Antichrist. Ending with what I firmly believe is an accurate identification of the beast—who had already lived and died, but would return from the Abyss during the Tribulation—as the Roman Emperor Nero.
(*Note: I do not by any stretch of the imagination support the Preterists’ view, which also identifies Nero as the Antichrist. But they do so with the absurd supposition that the Tribulation occurred in the 1st century, which has been correctly and convincingly refuted by many Bible scholars, including me. And yet most of these scholars have made the same (one) mistake as the Preterists. They missed the astounding reality stated clearly by John in Revelation; that the man—the Antichrist beast—had already lived and died. A clear textual fact that I also had overlooked for many years, until November, 2008).
“Why are you so amazed, the angel asked … The beast you saw was once alive but isn’t now. And yet he will soon come up out of the bottomless pit … And the people who belong to this world … will be amazed at the reappearance of this beast who had died” (Revelation 17:7-8).
Although this week’s article began and will continue briefly with a review of the number of the anti-Messiah beast, the main emphasis will be on another number—the number of the true Messiah.
Both numbers are found in and understood by Hebrew Gematria. Which is the way that Jews in Bible times (actually up to the point when the Roman decimal system became the dominant numerical standard) counted and performed mathematical calculations. Each letter of the Hebrew alphabet is assigned a number from one to ten or in multiples of tens or hundreds. Many Jews today are familiar with and sometimes use gematria to compare Hebrew words, names, phrases, and places to the significance of their numerical value.
As you may (or may not) know, the New Testament was written in Greek. That was done through God’s providential direction; Greek was the universal language in the 1st century, much like English was/is in the 20th & 21st centuries. However, Jesus and all Jews spoke primarily Aramaic or Hebrew, though many were proficient in Greek and others in Latin. And, of course, the entire Old Testament (often quoted by Jesus and the writers of the New Testament books) was written in Hebrew. That same Hebrew language, with modern-day words added, has been miraculously restored; spoken by Israelis and also by rabbis the world over.
Because it would take a mind of understanding to decipher the identity of the Antichrist beast, I’m convinced that, at first, only a few of the 1st century Christian Jews realized that six hundred and sixty-six was a Hebrew Gematria reference to the name of the man. They then passed on this insight to their Jewish brothers and sisters in Christ less likely to use gematria to ascertain the meaning of the number of the beast; or Gentiles Christians who would have no understanding of Hebrew Gematria.
(22 Letters in Hebrew Alphabet. There Are Five More Hebrew Symbols Representing Numbers 500, 600, 700, 800, and 900, When Necessary For Mathematical Functions)
Eventually, identifying the beast by combining all of the Biblical passages about this wicked man led to four centuries of a phenomenon known as the Nero Redivivus Legend. (Please see Eye of Prophecy article, The Legendary Return of Nero, posted 4-4-15). Even many unbelievers in the Roman Empire were persuaded that Nero would soon return to reclaim his throne.
Here is an excerpt from Out of the Abyss, Chapter 18, pages 167-168 (in italics):
I’m convinced the early Christians knew why the identity of the man of lawlessness was encoded in Hebrew gematria. To simply divulge the man’s name would have been a death sentence for thousands more Christians who had survived persecution and death that had already begun (under Nero, who had died not long before Revelation was written) before John wrote Revelation … The current emperor would have jumped at the opportunity to kill more Christians just because they claimed a former emperor was a “beast,” instead of a god and all of the repercussions that go with that seditious disdain for the perceived divinity of a Roman emperor.
…Besides, John told them that the beast would “come up out of the bottomless pit.” They immediately knew that this would be the return of the beast that, “was once alive but isn’t now.” (Parenthesis added in today’s article).
The final portion of Chapter 18 in Out of the Abyss begins under the heading: Let’s Count in Hebrew.
To better grasp the process of the early Christians’ decoded discovery of the beast’s identity and also to make it more intriguing, I explained what certainly could have happened (and logically did occur) after the book of Revelation was written and disseminated among believers. In the form of a little narrative, it is as follows (in italics):
Picture, if you will, a Messianic Jewish wife greeting her Messianic Jewish husband. After a hard day at work, the husband has just stepped through the threshold of their home in Philadelphia. That’s the city of Philadelphia of ancient Asia Minor, not Pennsylvania! You remember: the location of one of the seven churches of Revelation Chapters 2 and 3.
She hands him a newly transcribed scroll of Revelation, which is being passed from Christian house to house in Philadelphia. “Honey … Quick, let’s eat, put the kids to bed, and read this incredible letter that John wrote.” Throughout the evening, they take turns reading aloud to each other; the entire time they are shaking their heads in amazement.
“So incredible,” the wife exclaims. “Let’s pray, go to bed, and talk about it tomorrow.”
“You go to bed, if you like,” he replies. “I’m going to solve the name of this beast.”
“Not without me, you’re not,” she scolds with a playful grin.
They put everything together. This is how they did it:
One by one they wrote down the Greek equivalent to the names of the five dead or fallen Roman emperors. With each name they used the Greek suffix, “Kaiser;” you really could not separate the Emperor’s name from his title (Caesar). All of the emperors were addressed this way—Augustus Caesar….
The book of Revelation had been written in Greek, so they understood they needed to use the Greek spelling of the Latin names of the emperors. But they also knew that the only way to understand the meaning of the number was to transpose the Greek spelling to the Hebrew alphabet, as that is the only way Jews were able to accurately calculate the number. In fact, that is the way they counted.
And so they did. To their utter astonishment, six hundred, sixty-six was an exact match to one (and only one) of the fallen emperors. Wide-eyed, he looked at her in stunned silence. She stared at him with mouth opened. They peered again at the transliteration from Greek into the Hebrew alphabet.
Resh – 200; Samech – 60; Kuf – 100; Nun – 50; vav – 6; Resh – 200; Nun – 50. They added the numbers together. Six Hundred and sixty-six.
Neron Kaiser. The beast is NERO! (Pages 167-168).
(Note: Hebrew is read from right to left, thus you can match up the sound of the Hebrew letters by spelling/pronouncing them (right to left) in English to Neron Kaiser—which is read and written from left to right. Try it!)
The Title of Messiah & Its Numerical Value
Since all Hebrew words, phrases, and names bear a number (total value of all letters), it’s obvious that the appellation (title) of Messiah also would have an equivalent numerical value.
As follows but going from left to right to make it easier:
Mem = 40; Shin = 300; Yod = 10; Chet = 8. Combined total is 358.
Messiah in Hebrew is: Mashiach. (Once again sound out the letters. Hint: the “Y” in “Yod” is a consonant vowel, pronounced more like a short “a” … ah)
As found in Out of the Abyss Chapter 7 and also a few Eye of Prophecy articles as fitting the topic, certain numbers in Scripture have substantial meaning in God’s sovereign plan for and interaction with his creation, especially mankind. Such as: three, four, seven, twelve, forty, seventy, and four hundred. (For example, please see article, Countdown to Armageddon … End of the Fourth 400-Year Era, published 7-29-17).
Likewise, the gematria value of many Hebrew words and phrases are a vital component of Judaism and Jewish life. One of those significant numbers is 18, which is the sum value of the Hebrew word, Chai or life. Consequently, monetary gifts among Jews are often given in the factor of eighteen.
(Common Hebrew Phrases With the Word Chai–life or lives)
In breaking down the composite number for Messiah (358), we find the following:
Three: The number of the Trinity … Father, Son, Holy Spirit.
Five: The number representing God’s Grace.
Eight: The number signifying what is new as in New Beginning.
Messiah Jesus is the Son of God and God the Son, the second Person of the Triune God. The majestic Three in One. God’s grace was lavishly poured out to both Jew and Gentile through the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Messiah Jesus to save us from our sins. When we accept Jesus as our personal Savior, we are a new creation in Christ; we have a new beginning with all our sins forgiven and the penalty for those sins pardoned. During the Rapture, the dead in Christ will be given a brand new body via resurrection, and then the transfiguration of living believers follows quickly (I Thessalonians 4 & I Corinthians 15).
However, there’s no need for Scripture to specifically identify the numerical equivalent (gematria) of anyone or anything, as the Bible itself provides all the needed content that enables us to comprehend God’s plan for the human race. Yet, if we’re truly interested in knowing the Lord and his Word, we will better see the literal and figurative value that God places on certain numbers (identified earlier). In addition to those stated numbers, the numerical values revealed through Hebrew gematria is one of those peripheral—yet still significant—tools for those who want to understand the Bible that much more.
As alluded to earlier: there is one exception. Which is the encoded number of the Antichrist beast given to us as one of the pieces of the prophetic puzzle to decode and declassify what most think must remain a mystery until after the Rapture—the identity of the Antichrist. The text is clear: Revelation 13:18 unequivocally declares that the number six-hundred and sixty-six is the number of “a man.” Not man’s number in general which many believe to be six (created on the sixth day). Rather, it is the number of “a” man—who obviously is the Antichrist Beast.
And it’s through Hebrew gematria that we can match up six hundred and sixty-six with Nero Caesar. Then by disciplined study and a good dose of God-given wisdom and understanding, to confirm that disclosure with all of the other passages on the Antichrist found in Scripture.
Conversely, there is no question that Jesus of Nazareth is the Messiah … The Anointed One, which is what Messiah means. Anyone with any degree of objectivity, but also an open mind and sincere heart passionately wanting to know the truth of who Jesus is, will see that … even the most orthodox of Jewish rabbis. Jesus literally fulfilled dozens of Old Testament prophecies about the coming Messiah, including the following prediction that indisputably shows Messiah must arrive BEFORE the second temple was destroyed (in 70 AD).
Biblical Numbers Expressed in Specific Prophetic Periods of Time/Years
“After this period of sixty-two sets of seven, the Anointed One (Mashiach) will be killed, appearing to have accomplished nothing, and a ruler will arise whose armies will destroy the city (Jerusalem) and the Temple…” (Daniel 9:26, parenthesis mine).
Jesus’s birth was so supremely significant that it changed time from before Christ (BC) to after Christ (AD). Only 33-34 years after Jesus was killed by crucifixion, Nero personally ordered his Generals Vespasian and Titus and their legions to march on Jerusalem in 66 A.D. It was Nero’s armies that destroyed the city and the temple.
(Many More Jews–Men, Woman, & Children–Were Killed Than Taken Captive)
While we’re on the subject of numbers in Scripture—the kind given by the Lord in the form of an astonishingly specific time-dedicated prophecy—let’s read part of the passage just prior to Daniel 9:26. The archangel Gabriel is speaking to Daniel:
“Now listen and understand! Seven sets of seven plus sixty-two sets of seven (483 years total) will pass from the time the command is given to rebuild Jerusalem until a ruler—the Anointed One—comes…” (Daniel 9:25, parenthesis mine).
Time/space in today’s article doesn’t allow a detailed explanation of this phenomenal prophecy. Please see Eye of Prophecy article, An Incredible Time Lapse Prophecy (posted 1-18-14)) for elaboration (also found in a few subsequent articles). Here is an excerpt from that post:
Sir Robert Anderson calculated (with partial assistance from the Royal Observatory, Greenwich) the Julian date of King Artaxerxes edict to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem to have been March 14th, 445 BC. Furthermore, the Julian date for Jesus’s magnificent ride into Jerusalem was April 6th, 32 AD. By employing the Hebrew calendar, Sir Robert Anderson tallied 173,880 days had elapsed which is exactly 483 Jewish years!! Absolutely astounding! I repeat for emphasis: Incredible!!
Another astonishing prophecy (Leviticus 26) that the Lord graciously gave me understanding of was the exact amount of time specified by what I term Seven Times Over (uninterrupted succession of years) ending the Gentile domination of the Jews and Israel in 1967—the Six Day War. Please see Eye of Prophecy article, The Omega Generation, posted 2-15-14, which was an epilogue to three preceding articles, Seven Times Seven (to the 4th power I, II, III) published 1-25, 2-1, and 2-8-14.
In summary: the Bible contains three categories of numbers to express God’s plan and fulfillment of prophecy. They are:
(1) Certain numbers to represent significant models and methods of God’s interaction with both Jews and Gentiles. Such as: Three, Four, Seven, Twelve, Forty, and others.
(2) Prophetic announcements and fulfillment that involve precise dates/times.
(3) Hebrew Gematria that connect and correlate Biblical words, phrases, and names to the importance of certain numbers as indicated in Category 1. With, however, the recognition that (except for the encoded gematria number of the Antichrist beast) Scripture does not actually state or specify the numerical equivalent or values. That is a “bonus” for those who are willing to learn more about the dynamics of the Hebrew alphabet and how letters and words impart deeper meaning to numbers and vice versa.
Regarding Messiah’s number of 358, we find this in a few Old Testament passages. Such as one we just looked at.
In both Daniel 9:25 & Daniel 9:26, we find the title of “Anointed One” translated Messiah in many Bible translations. Mashiach (Hebrew for Messiah) equals 358.
We also find the numerical value of 358 in the italicized phrase of the following passage: “The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor the ruler’s staff from between his feet, Until Shiloh comes…” (Genesis 49:10, NASB, “Yibo Shiloh” in Hebrew).
Bible scholars and teachers (including me) recognize this as a reference to the coming Messiah.
There are a few other passages where the name or phrase equals 358, with either a direct reference to Messiah or a type or symbol of Messiah. Such as Deuteronomy 34:9 and Isaiah 44:24.
Ironically (but not to God), the term snake or serpent adds up to 358. You might be thinking, what’s that all about? Read with me the analogy Jesus used shortly after he told Nicodemus: “you must be born again” in order to enter the Kingdom of God.
“And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life” (John 3:14-15).
In this context of salvation, Jesus was emphasizing the lifting up part … meaning his death on the cross. Which is the only remedy for sin and death and final conquest over the original serpent, the Devil … Satan.
Here’s the Old Testament scene referred to by Jesus in which God had to discipline his people for yet another rebellion against him:
“So the Lord sent poisonous snakes among the people, and many were bitten and died. Then the people came to Moses and cried out, ‘We have sinned by speaking against the Lord and against you. Pray that the Lord will take away the snakes.’ So Moses prayed for the people.
“Then the Lord told him, ‘Make a replica of a poisonous snake and attach it to a pole. All who are bitten will live if they simply look at it!’ So Moses made a snake out of bronze and attached it to a pole. Then anyone who was bitten by a snake could look at the bronze snake and be healed!” (Numbers 21:6-9).
Everyone has been bitten by sin and (without God’s remedy) will die an eternal death because of that deadly bite. Among other literal and symbolic lessons of this “snake” incident graphically portrayed by the Lord to describe his death on a pole (the cross), is the life-giving truth that all a person need do is believe in the Way, the Truth, and the Life (Messiah Jesus … John 14:6) for forgiveness of sin and once-for-all redemption that leads to eternal life instead of death. It wasn’t just looking at the snake that saved those who had been bitten. It was their trust in God to do what he said he would do if they simply looked at the bronze serpent. If they looked with complete faith in God, then he would save them.
To look is to see and to see is to believe. This is also true in reverse. To believe is to look and to look is to see. “I once was lost but now am found; was blind, but now I see.” (Words from song, Amazing Grace).
A Captivating Correlation between the Number of Messiah and an Event Some 358 Years Ago
The following occurred to me: If we convert the numerical value of Messiah to years and look back some 358 years, would we find something or someone of some historical note. I’m placing this in the representative comparative (not actual) context of the soon return of Messiah and the corresponding years associated with Jesus’s amazing statement that all of the end-times signs would occur within a span of one generation (see Matthew 24:34). As indicated, I have written about this in several Eye of Prophecy articles, with reference to the monumental milestones of the Balfour Declaration of 1917, the UN Resolution of 1947 (followed in seven months by Israel becoming a State in 1948), and the Six-Day War of 1967 in which the Holy City of Jerusalem was reunited with the Holy Land of Israel.
All leading to a time-frame (converting Roman calendar years to Jewish years and months) of the Rapture possibly taking place before the year 2020. With, however, heavy emphasis on the fact that Jesus said that no one knows the day or hour (Matthew 24 & 25). However, he also said we should recognize the signs of the last days, with one of the most important of those actually transpiring in our generation, compliments of evangelism via the media … radio, television and the internet:
“And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14).
With the conviction that the Day of the Lord is so very near, I’m simply using the present time (this year … 2017) as a benchmark reference point to see where the number of Messiah (in years) retroactively takes us. If I hadn’t found what was found, neither this week’s article nor any Eye of Prophecy article would have been written on this subject (Messiah’s number).
A Rabbi Named Sabbatai Zevi
During his lifetime (1626 to 1676) this mystic Jewish rabbi claimed to be the long-awaited Messiah. Unlike a few others who have made such a claim down through the ages, this man had a huge European following of both Jews and Gentiles. So much so that a legacy was named after him—the Sabbatean movement. More so than anyone before him since the Jewish Zealot Bar Kokhba led the last revolt against Rome in 130-135 A.D. Many hailed Kokhba as the Messiah. Except, of course, Messianic Jews and Gentile Christians who knew beyond all doubt that Jesus of Nazareth was (still is and always will be) Messiah—if for no other reason than his resurrection from the dead.
Interestingly enough, Zevi was born in the city of Smyrna, which at that time was part of the Ottoman Empire. This is the same Smyrna named as one of the seven churches in Revelation Chapters 2 & 3. Among other things that Jesus said of the church in Smyrna:
“…I know the blasphemy of those opposing you. They say they are Jews, but they are not, because their synagogue belongs to Satan” (Revelation 2:9).
In the first century, there were two main antagonistic forces against the Christian Jews and Gentiles in Smyrna. One was the Jewish population openly opposing Christianity. The other was the Gentile population aggressively aligned with Rome; Gentiles who lived there were loyal worshippers of the Roman emperors.
There was still a thriving Jewish community in Smyrna in the 17th century, and there were two major events during the mid-part of that century.
First Event: A resurgence of Messianic fervor greater than any since the time of Christ Jesus. For Gentile Christians and their Messianic Jewish brothers in Christ, it was the return of Messiah. For non-Messianic Jews (as is still the case today) it was the first appearance of Messiah. In fact some of those Jews actually identified the year 1648 (then later 1666) as the year of their final redemption by their long-awaited Jewish Messiah.
Time/space doesn’t permit more information on this obviously false messiah, who later converted to Islam to avoid persecution and possible death at the hands of the Sultan of Turkey! In stark contrast to the true Messiah Jesus, who as the Son of God willingly came to this earth as a man (Virgin Birth) and freely laid down his life for our ugly sins and the penalty of those transgressions, eternal separation from God. As well as all of Jesus’s disciples (except John) who were killed for preaching the Good News, and millions of Christians down through the ages (more in the 20th and 21st centuries than ever before) who have given the supreme sacrifice of their lives to testify that only Messiah Jesus can save us.
(Portrait of Sabbatai Zevi, Next to a Crown)
Here is an excerpt from the Jewish History website article:
What happened next is indescribable. We know it from diplomatic records, from ambassadors of countries who sent records to their government describing what happened throughout the Jewish world. Sabbatai Zevi was not just a Jewish phenomenon, but an international one. His arrival affected the economy and politics of all Europe.
Wild rumors regarding the advent of the Messiah circulated all over the civilized world. Jews is Greece, Italy, Syria, Egypt and Turkey, began to sell out their properties in anticipation of moving to the Holy Land.
The Jewish communities of Amsterdam, Hamburg, Altona, Frankfurt and Main were all taken over by supporters of Sabbatai Zevi. The chief opponent of Sabbatai Zevi was a rabbi in Amsterdam by the name of Jacob Sasportas. He sent letters to the rabbis of Europe to oppose Sabbatai Zevi. Shockingly, hundreds of rabbis refused to do so. Many of them said in effect that even if Sabbatai Zevi was not the Messiah he was good for the Jews because a lot of assimilated Jews were now more religious or at least more aware and proud of their Jewish identities…
By the end of 1665, the messianic fervor had moved from the Mediterranean basin to Western and Eastern Europe. In short, Sabbatai Zevi hysteria swept throughout Europe, especially Eastern Europe which was still reeling from the Tach V’tat massacres. The Jews were looking for something. Here was the solution; here was the Messiah.
This last paragraph leads us directly to the:
Second Event: Quoting from the first paragraph of an article with the heading of Tach V’tat, also posted in the online source of Jewish History:
“The years 1648 and 1649 represent a watershed in Jewish history. In Jewish tradition they are referred to as Tach V’tat (which are the Hebrew letters representing the numbers 408 and 409, which correspond to the years of 1648 and 1649 on the non-Jewish calendar). One can even say that Tach V’tat marks the beginning of modern Jewish history. It is certainly the harbinger of enormous changes in and enormous destruction of the Jewish world.”
The author of that column was referring to and did mention the mass slaughter of an estimated 300,000 Jews (30% of the Jewish European population) by Russian Cossacks, Tartars, and mostly by Polish peasants during these two years, but continuing through 1653. Proportionally, the number of Jews killed during this relatively short 5-6 year period of time exceeded the Crusades or the Inquisition before, both of which took place over a long period of time. It was the largest mass murder of Jews until the Holocaust, which also took place over a 5-6 year period of time.
(I Hesitated To Post This Holocaust Mass Grave Picture, one of many photos and videos taken of the Holocaust. But We Must Never Forget. The Tach V’tat massacre of the Jews was done one at a time by hand, compared to the machine gun and gas chambers of the Holocaust)
As the author of the Jewish History article concluded: it was the harbinger of enormous changes in and destruction of the Jewish world to come.
The Starling Correlation
The Holocaust of the Second World War was a direct (prophetic) catalyst of the rebirth of the State of Israel, which is one of the three epic achievements of the 20th century that signal specific time frames of the Day of the Lord (in a generational period that the Bible defines as both 100 years and 70 years).
Sabbatai Zevi was a false messiah, who deceived many by special (questionable) paranormal abilities and pious living. He would be a pre-cursor to the next infamous and last anti-Messiah who will reappear shortly after the Rapture. Followed seven years later by the true Messiah’s return.
Let’s do the math:
Starting with this year (2017), and then transposing Messiah’s number of 358 to years, we’ll go backward in history. Once again, however, we need to convert Roman calendar years to Jewish calendar years. Those calculations give us 363 Jewish years. Subtracting 363 from 2017, we end up in the year 1654.
That was the year that immediately followed the end of the worst mass murder of Jews (1648-1653) until the Holocaust; with the Holocaust immediately preceding the rebirth of Israel in 1948. Which, in turn, was the epic beginning of the 70-year generation (within the 100-year generation of the Balfour Declaration of 1917) that would usher in the Day of the Lord.
Also it was the last prominent anti-Messiah to deceive both Jews and Gentiles alike, until (the) Antichrist (Nero) will return from the Abyss. Only to be totally vanquished by the true Messiah.
Things to Ponder
Certainly, there is some speculation on my part even to match the number of Messiah to years. As indicated in some prior Eye of Prophecy articles: Unlike a great many—even well-meaning Bible scholars—who focus on Biblical prophecy, I seldom do any speculating at all. Rather, I rely on the comparison of Scripture to Scripture and then correlation to historical events. If you have read just a few Eye of Prophecy articles, I’m convinced you will see that.
In that regard, I would classify the 358 paradigm as a secondary (probable but not absolutely certain) prophetic development or sign. One that is more hidden and harder to discern than the obvious Biblical prophecies of Messiah’s first and second advents and Israel’s final redemption and restoration as covered extensively in Eye of Prophecy articles, including current events that pertain to these prophetic developments.
Nevertheless, the fact that 358 years ago, give or take a few years, finds us at the very time of what was the most prominent false messiah up to that point—including the worst massacre of Jews until the Holocaust—is, I think, quite relevant … even remarkable.
Messiah Jesus’s return is so very near. This is the ardent anticipation and strong belief of most evangelical Bible scholars and teachers and millions upon millions of Christians. Although there are many articles on several subjects, one of the main purposes of Eye of Prophecy website is to provide Biblical and historical documentation to support that powerful premise.
The 358 template that connects a false messiah (a pre-cursor of the ultimate Antichrist—Nero) to the true Messiah is one more piece of the prophetic puzzle. Albeit the fitting of this piece requires a magnifying lens that includes looking at Hebrew gematria coupled with a strong working knowledge of Biblical prophecy and secular history.
In that context, it’s pretty amazing what was happening 358 years ago! Was that mere coincidence? Or could there be a prophetic correlation and time-lapse application to the imminent return of Christ in today’s world?
“But it was to us that God revealed things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets … And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us” (I Corinthians 2:10 & 12, parenthesis in the text).
“Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:11-12).
“…If you are a teacher, teach well” (Romans 12:7).
By the grace of God and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, Eye of Prophecy articles will teach well, as we are: