My sister received an interesting e-mail earlier today which she forwarded to me, asking my opinion on what it said. While I was able to give her my response, I felt compelled to broaden it and re-post it in the name of honesty. To beg
in with, it's important to analyze the original message. While it will be difficult (since it is an embarrassing attempt at cogent writing - frankly, my five-year-old niece could do better) to re-post it, I'll do so in the name of full disclosure.
This will make you re-think: A Trivia question in Sunday School: How long is the beast allowed to have authority in Revelation? Revelation Chapter 13 tells us it is 42 months, and you know what that is. Almost a four-year term of a Presidency. All I can say is 'Lord, Have mercy on us!' According to The Book of Revelation, the anti-Christ is: a man in his 40's, of MUSLIM descent, who will deceive the nations with persuasive language, and have a MASSIVE Christ-like appeal....the prophecy says that people will flock to him and he will promise false hope and world peace, and when he is in power, will destroy everything.. Do we recognize this description? I STRONGLY URGE each one of you to post this as many times as you can! Each opportunity that you have to send it to a friend or media outlet. . .do it! I refuse to take a chance on this unknown candidate who came out of nowhere. From: Dr. John Tisdale
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Dear Friends, As I was listening to a news program last night, I watched in horror as Barack Obama made the statement with pride. . .'we are no longer a Christian nation; we are now a nation of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, . . .' As with so many other statements I've heard him (and his wife) make, I never thought I'd see the day that I'd hear something like that from a presidential candidate in this nation. To think our forefathers fought and died for the right for our nation to be a Christian nation--and to have this man say with pride that we are no longer that. How far this nation has come from what our founding fathers intended it to be. I hope that each of you will do what I'm doing now--send your concerns, written simply and sincerely, to the Christians on your email list. With God's help, and He is still in control of this nation and all else, we can show this man and the world in November that we are, indeed, still a Christian nation! Please pray for our nation! Paul
Okay, now let's take a look at this poorly-written chain mail. After extensive studies of the book of Revelation in the past couple of months, I'd love to analyze it. First, let's copy the text of Revelation 13 and see what it says.
1: And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
2: And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
3: And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.
4: And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?
5: And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.
6: And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
7: And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.
8: And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
9: If any man have an ear, let him hear.
10: He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.
11: And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.
12: And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
13: And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men,
14: And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.
15: And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.
16: And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:
17: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
18: Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.
All right. Now let's see the two highly specific details mentioned in the beginning of the e-mail - that the Beast would be Muslim and that he would be in his forties. Does anyone else see a problem with both of those? 1)Islam wouldn't exist for another 400+ years, and 2)it never mentions a thing about age in the ACTUAL Book of Revelation. (Now, maybe the foolhardy person who wrote this e-mail has some different version of Revelation that the rest of us aren't privy to - who knows?) The only thing that is true about what it says in Revelation 13 is that he would be in power 42 months. Nothing else of what it mentions in that e-mail is true.
But I love the second half of it where it talks about this being a 'Christian' nation as opposed what Senator Obama said - that 'we are no longer a Christian nation; we are now a nation of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists'. I don't understand what the Religious Right has against all other religions but their own (most likely yours included, since it's not their brand of Christianity), but I find it embarrassing that they want to force Christianity down everyone's throats - thus cheapening all other religions and moral codes. The tripe about our founding fathers fighting for ours to be a Christian nation is a lie that has been propagated for far too long.
Frankly, this whole e-mail simply reminds me of the words of the Lord himself in the book of Matthew, chapter 15, verses 19 and the beginning of 20:
For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man.
These supposed 'Christians' are defiling themselves by spreading lies and false witness. They are fearmongers, out to propagate their twisted reasoning by smearing Senator Obama. Now, those of you who know me will know that I'm no Obama supporter by any stretch of the imagination - go Ralph go, after all - but to see such lies be bandied about by these purportedly pious people is shockingly bad.
If there's one group of citizens in this country that sickens me more often and more completely than any other, it's the hypocrisy to be found in Christian Evangelicals and Fundamentalists that have driven the Republican party into the ground.