Chapters 1 & 2 Star Chart: John (Pollux) hears "a great voice, as of a trumpet" (1:10) (golden bell-shaped red pipe) and is told "What you see (red radius line from Capricorn's lunar eyeball), write in a book (white lunar pages with red bookmark) and send (via red radius line post)" (1:11) to the Little Flock (Ursa Minor)."He cometh with clouds" (1:7), as if being lowered by red radius lines and solar and lunar pulleys (block and tackle) to earth.
The Ephesian Era existed from Sagittarius ("eyes like a flame of fire...out of his mouth...two-edged sword" -- Rev. 1:12-17) (96 A.D.) clockwise opposite to Gemini ("thou hast LEFT thy first love" 180° years away from Sagittarius = 276 A.D. and "fallen" (2:5) since lower and further away from earth's perspective. These Christians survived until the reign of Bahram II (276-293AD) when "Zoroastrianism was promoted in the empire and other religious communities were persecuted." (Christianity in Iran, A Brief History by Massoume Price). Price continues, "The false doctrines of Ahriman and of the idols suffered great blows and lost credibility. The Jews (Yahud), Buddhists (Shaman), Hindus (Brahman), NAZARENES (Nasara), Christians (Kristiyan), Baptists (Makdag) and Manichaeans (Zandik) were smashed in the empire, their idols destroyed, and the habitations of the idols annihilated and turned into abodes and seats of the gods" (Moon, Sun, Jupiter, Venus, Mars, Saturn, and Mercury). Our Lord "removed the (red radius line FULL MOON) candlestick out of his place" in PERSIA (Rev. 2:5). "He that hath an (lunar crescent) ear let him hear" (2:7). The "tree of life" (2:7) is represented by red radius lines branching out from the Polar Star with lunar and solar fruit. Mars = 112, Mercury = 117, Venus = 131 and Saturn = 166.
The Smyrna Era existed from 23 Feb. 303 to 13 June 313 A.D. (Lactantius De Mort. Persec. 48) which was the "tribulation ten days" (2:10) -- Diocletian's persecution 10° years -- from the CRESCENT sword in Sagittarius (303) ("prison" pit or "death" -- 2:10) to the SUN crown in Sagittarius (313) ("crown of life" -- 2:10). The Milky Way is the SMOKE from the altar of sacrifice. Christians were burnt alive and so were the Scriptures for non-compliance to the requirement to sacrifice to the Roman gods (The planets portrayed around the Zodiac were all worshipped: Saturn, Venus, Mercury, Mars, Jupiter and Sun positions are all based on the web site www.stargazing.net/mas/planet4.htm for 1 Jan. 96 A.D. which fulfills all three limiting factors: 1.) a planetary configuration that looks like a menorah, 2.) the sun is in the head of Sagittarius at RA 281° and 3.) our Lord calling himself the "first (Jan. 1) and last (Dec. 31)" (1:8) in 96 A.D. Counting clockwise from the blue tick mark, the Sun is 281.5°, Mercury is 302°, Venus is 316.5°, Mars is 297°, Jupiter is 269.5°, and Saturn is 351°. Counting clockwise from the node (blue tick mark), the Right Ascension [RA] value represents hours. Therefore, since there are 24 hours in a complete 360° circle, each hemisphere is 12 hours or 180° and each hour is 15° and the location of each planet can be accurately pinpointed. "He that hath a (lunar crescent) ear, let him hear" (2:11).
The Pergamos Era existed from Sagittarius (313) ("he who hath a sharp sword CRESCENT with two edges" -- 2:12) to Capricorn (+ 30° = 343) ("Satan's seat" -- 2:13) and back to Capricorn (+ 360° = 703 A.D.) again ("where Satan dwelleth" -- 2:13) since the phrase is mentioned twice. The BLACK pot of "hidden (white and round) manna" (Ex. 16:14,31) is portrayed by a white crescent since the BLACK lid is ajar. It was brought forth on Yom Kippur when the High Priest returned to bless the people after a GOAT was sacrificed. In 703 the last great Berber revolt under al-Kahina, whose tribe practised Judeo-Christianity, was crushed by Moslems. For five years Hasan ibn al Numan had bided his time, and in the year A.D. 703 he received reinforcements, money, and the order to return to Afrikia. A terrible battle near Tabarka ensued in which the Berbers were beaten (black zodiac) and al-Kahina was slain (black virgo), and the ancient polytheistic religions of North Africa disappeared (Jupiter, Moon, Mars, Sun, Moon again, Mercury, Venus, and Saturn). Julien writes, "on the eve of the final battle, the Kahina ordered her sons to go over to the enemy." Her sons had to convert to Islam to seal their defection to the Arabs (FULL MOON in Gemini). Hasan (Sagittarius) again re-entered Qayrawan, and Afrikia was once more in the possession of the Arabs. The Berbers then asked for peace, which was granted to them on the condition that they furnished 12,000 troops. By 703 the Byzantine North African territories of Algeria and Tunisia, as well as Morocco, fell to the Islamic Empire and many Christians fled to Spain. Also in 703 Armenian Christian nobles or nakharars were massacred in Nakhichevan Cappadocia by Moslems -- whose sign was a CRESCENT. Satan "dwells" in Islam. The "white stone" (2:17) is the full moon. "He that hath a (lunar crescent) ear, let him hear" (2:17). Mars = 329, Mercury = 334, Venus = 349, Saturn = 383, Jupiter = 662, Mercury = 694 and Mars = 689.
[Phrases that refer to GEMINI are "kings and priests" (1:6), "Alpha and Omega" (1:8), "first and last" (1:8; 1:11; 1:17; 2:8), "dead and alive" (1:18; 2:8), "they also which pierced him" with a red radius line (1:7), and "them which say they are Jews" (2:9). Phrases that refer to CAPRICORN are "every (lunar) eye shall see him" (1:7) "he that hath an (lunar) ear, let him hear" (2:7; 2:11; 2:17), "Satan's seat" (2:13) and with a lunar mouth to "eat things sacrificed to idols" (2:14). Phrases that refer to SAGITTARIUS are "prince of the kings" (1:5), "he cometh with clouds" (1:7), "eyes like flame of fire" (1:13),"in his hand seven stars and out of his mouth a sharp two-edged sword" (1:16; 2:12), "keys of hell and death" (1:18), "great voice behind me as a (solar gold red tubed) trumpet" (in Sagittarius)(1:10), "feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace (two red radius lines of Sagittarius)" and "sword of my mouth" (2:16). Sagittarius puts his "right hand on me" (indicated by two red radius lines)(1:17)]
Seven-Part Timeline of the Apocalypse
(to be used in conjunction with Zodiac star charts)
(1.) Chapters 1 & 2: The Ephesian Era existed from sun in Sagittarius ("eyes like a flame of fire ... out of his mouth ... two-edged sword" -- Rev. 1:12-17) (96 A.D.) clockwise opposite to full moon in Gemini ("thou hast LEFT thy first love" (2:4) 180° away from Sagittarius = 276 A.D.). These Christians survived until the reign of Bahram II (276-293) when "Zoroastrianism was promoted in the empire and other religious communities were persecuted." (Christianity in Iran, A Brief History by Massoume Price). Our Lord "removed the [red radius line FULL MOON] candlestick out of his place" in Persia (Rev. 2:5). The Smyrna Era existed from 303 to 313 A.D. which was the "tribulation ten days" (2:10) -- Diocletian's persecution 10° years -- from the lunar CRESCENT sword in Sagittarius (303) ("death" -- 2:10) to the SUN crown in Sagittarius (313) ("crown of life" -- 2:10). The Pergamos Era existed from the sun in Sagittarius (313) ("he who hath the sharp sword CRESCENT with two edges" -- 2:12) to Capricorn (+30° = 343) ("Satan's seat" -- 2:13) and back to Capricorn (+ 360° = 703 A.D.) again ("where Satan dwelleth" -- 2:13) since the phrase is mentioned twice. The black pot of "hidden (white & round) manna" (Ex. 16:14,31) is portrayed by a white crescent since the black lid is ajar. It was brought forth on Yom Kippur when the High Priest returned to bless the people after a GOAT was sacrificed. By 703 the Byzantine North African territories of Algeria and Tunisia, as well as Morocco, fell to the Islamic Empire and many Christians fled to Spain. Also in 703 Armenian Christian nobles or nakharars were massacred in Nakhichevan Cappadocia by Moslems -- whose sign was a CRESCENT. Satan "dwells" in Islam.
(2.) Chapters 2 & 3: The Thyatira Era existed for 1260 years (Jezebel's "space to repent" -- 3 1/2 years -- Rev. 2:21 & James 5:17) from sun in Sagittarius (96 A.D.) ("eyes like a flame of fire" -- 2:18) clockwise to full moon in Gemini (+1260° = 1356 A.D.) ("her CHILDREN " -- 2:23). The Bubonic Plague in 1356 A.D. was Jezebel's "(sick) bed," "great tribulation" (Rev. 2:22) and "I will kill her CHILDREN" (2:23). Likewise with the French defeat at Poitiers in 1356 and the Golden Bull of 1356 which made it law to choose the German emperor without Papal approval. The FULL MOON in Gemini is a WHITE swollen LUMP in the groin area called a bubo. Symptoms include gangrene which causes skin tissue to turn BLACK. The Sardis Era existed from Gemini (1356) ("her CHILDREN" --2:23) to Ophiuchus (1507) ("HOLD fast ... defiled their garments [by holding a slimy unclean snake] ... WALK with me" -- 3:3-4) or 151 years. In Roman times Ophiuchus was known as Asclepius who was a healer who learned the secret of IMMORTALITY, hence "a name that thou LIVEST " (3:1) -- Asclepius. King Uladislaus of Hungary in 1507 was presented with two letters VICIOUSLY denouncing the followers of John Huss -- known as Bohemian Brethren. He therefore forbade their meetings and destroyed their books. Their clergy were made prisoners. This was Scorpio's lunar CRESCENT stinger under Ophiuchus. The Philadelphia Era existed from Sagittarius (1507-1517 A.D.) ("he that hath the KEY of David" [CRESCENT arrow] -- 3:7) clockwise to Taurus (+149° = 1666) ("KEY ... openeth and no man shutteth" -- 3:7) the moon door with TWO-PRONGED KEY back to Taurus again (+ 360° = 2026 A.D.) ("shutteth and no man openeth" -- 3:7) the moon door on Yom Kippur of 2026. Why 1666? Because that is when the Fire of London, the Bubonic Plague on London and battles between the Dutch and English fleets occurred indicating to many the "end of the world." The Laodicean Era exists from Hercules (1507 -- when Martin Luther was ordained a priest) to Andromeda (+159° = 1666) ("neither cold nor hot" -- 3:15) and back to Andromeda (+360° = 2026 A.D.) ("neither cold nor hot" -- 3:16) again. The phrase is mentioned twice. Notice that Andromeda is located on the Spring equinox of March 21 which is "LUKEWARM." Andromeda is "wretched, and miserable, and poor, ... and naked" (3:17), chained to a rich lifestyle. Consumed by the fish of debt. Hercules (Samson) is "blind" (3:17). She is out of synchronization with Perseus, her husband, and therefore is lacking the gold (SUN), white clothing (MILKY WAY) and eyesalve (gibbous MOON of Taurus) that our Lord (Sagittarius) has to offer. The 15 degrees of Andromeda-Laodicea are the "hour of temptation" (Rev. 3:10 & 18:10,17,19) which our Lord will keep Perseus-Philadelphia away from because if "a day is a (360-day) year" (Nu. 14:34; Ez. 4:6) and there are 24 hours in a day, then each "hour" is 15°. How does Perseus-Philadelphia avoid this "hour of temptation"? Perseus has wings on his heels and flies north. By travelling up the Al-Can Highway (Milky Way) to Whitehorse (Sagittarius), Perseus goes from "hot" (April 20 to May 20; "fiery trials") to "cold" (Nov. 23 - Dec. 22) and avoids "lukewarm." Whitehorse itself is "hot" in summer and "cold" in winter also. Perseus-Philadelphia tastes yummy. Notice that other constellations that see the danger are also in flight along this road (Aquila, Cygnus & Lyra). But when Andromeda tries this, Sagittarius spits her out of his mouth and the Milky Way becomes his sputum. She doesn't taste good. Laodicea's LUNAR door to the Lamb is BARRED with a red bar. The door is either the heart of Taurus or the anus of Aries -- depending on whether she loves him or not. Aries continually knocks on the door of her Taurus heart.
(3.) Chapters 5 & 6: John was exiled by Domitian to Patmos in 86 A.D. This is indicated by the CLOSED-door CRESCENT IN ARIES. (Aries -- "Lamb ... having seven HORNS and seven EYES" -- Rev. 5:6). But the "Lamb OPENED one of the SEALS" (Rev. 6:1) for preaching Christ is Lord and God. In other words, John was RELEASED from Patmos 10° years later by Nerva in 96 A.D. when Aries kicked the SUN-seal off the lunar CRESCENT "UNDERNEATH" with his hoof. If we add 240° years to 86 A.D. we get 326 A.D. when Constantine executed his his eldest son Crispus and his second wife Fausta (CRESCENT in Sagittarius). Adding 10° years, we arrive at the SUN in Sagittarius. Constantine's DEATH in 337 A.D. (Sagittarius -- "a pale horse: and his name ... was DEATH" -- Rev. 6:7) was 241° years clockwise after John's revelation on Patmos in 96 A.D. (see Irenaeus Heresies & Eusebius Eccl. Hist.) Constantine's reign of 24 years (313-337) was a microcosm of the 241-year pagan Roman Empire. Chapter 7: From 337 A.D. (sun in Sagittarius -- "SEALED ... of all the tribes ... of Israel" -- Rev. 7:3-4) we add 30° years to come to 367 when Picts, Scots, Saxons, and Franks attacked Roman Britain from all sides (Res Gestae 27:8). The Zodiac and Britain are both surrounded. Adding another 30° years we come to 397 when Stilicho repelled a Pictish, Irish and Saxon attack on Britain. Adding 30° years more we arrive at 427 A.D. Vortigern allowed Jutes, Saxons, Angles, Franks and Frisians into Britain to keep Picts out in 425-427. Etcetera. Finally we come to 697 A.D. On his death in 690, Theodore of Tarsus left behind a well-organized Sunday-keeping church in almost all of Britain. SUN-SEALED. Meanwhile 144,000 Celtic Bible-followers were SEALED with the Saturday Sabbath and LUNAR method of calculating Passover. The FULL MOON formed a SEAL in OPPOSITION to SUN-worship all around the Zodiac. MOON-SEALED. It is very likely that Eadfrith produced the Lindisfarne Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John in Gaelic) prior to 698 in order to commemorate the elevation of Cuthbert's relics in that year, which is also thought to have been the occasion for which the St Cuthbert Gospel was produced.
(4.) Chapter 8: Adding a 50-year Jubilee Cycle (8:1-3) to 337 (when Constantine died -- Rev. 6:2), we arrive at 387 A.D. (CRESCENT in Sagittarius) when Magnus Maximus invaded Italy in order to dispose of Valentinian II. Theodosius led an army against him and KILLED him the same year. Adding 120° years ("ONE THIRD" of the Zodiac -- Rev. 8:7-12) we come to 507 A.D. when Clovis I defeated the Visigoths in the Battle of Vouille (CRESCENT in Aries). Adding 15° years ("half an hour" -- 8:1) brings us to the SUN in Sagittarius on 402 A.D. when Alaric's Visigoths entered Italy. On 6 April 402, in Pollentia, the Visigoths, were distracted and celebrating Easter SUNday when Stilicho decided to attack. (Sagittarius -- Alaric "stood at the (church) altar (Ara), having a GOLDEN [sun] censer" -- Rev. 8:3). Although there was no clear victor, Stilicho managed to capture Alaric's wife, children, and other important relations. The Visigoths left Italy after losing the subsequent Battle of Verona to Stilicho in 402 A.D. Theodoric the Ostrogoth later married his daughter Amalasuntha to the Visigoth Eutharic, but Eutharic DIED in 522, so no lasting dynastic connection was established. (Sagittarius, not Aries, "opened seventh [SUN] SEAL" -- Rev. 8:1). Also in 522 the Catholic Burgundian king Sigismund KILLED his own son Sergeric, who was Theodoric's grandson (SUN-wound in Aries). From the start of this dynasty till its demise was 120 years just as from Sagittarius clockwise to Aries is 120° or "ONE THIRD" of the Zodiac (Rev. 8:7-12). This was probably our Lord's own royal blood line dynasty. Chapter 9a: If we add 360° years to 402 A.D. (sun in Sagittarius) we come to 762 A.D. when Al Mansour laid the foundation of the new capital at Baghdad (back again to Sagittarius -- "horses ... on their heads ...CROWNS like gold" -- Rev. 9:7). If we subtract 7°-12° years from our solar reference point of 762 A.D., we come to 750-755 A.D. -- the bow in Sagittarius: Abbasids assumed control of the Islamic world from 750-937 A.D. and moved the capital to Baghdad Iraq. But Spain fell under the control of an escaped descendant of the Umayyad family -- a second caliph who landed in al-Andalus and created the "Golden Caliphate", Abd al-Rahman. He was recognized in Cordova Spain in 755 A.D. -- just as the bow of Sagittarius looks like TWO goat HORNS. Whenever we encounter TWO HORNS, a new caliphate begins. Then in 788 a new Idrisid Caliphate of Maghreb (Morocco) rebelled against the Arabian Caliphs and established an independent state corresponding to the lunar crescent horn near the tail of Sagittarius ("tails like scorpions" -- 9:10; 788-974 A.D.). Notice that the Moslem goat (Capricorn -- Dan. 8) now has THREE HORNS or CALIPHATES (Abbasid, Umayyad and Idrisid). The Fatimid Caliphate (909–1171) was founded in 909 as the higher of two HORNS of Taurus by the eleventh Imam Abdullah al-Mahdi Billah and spanned a large area of North Africa. If we add 150° years ("five months" -- Rev. 9:5) clockwise from 762, we arrive at 912 A.D. (gibbous MOON in Taurus) when Abd Ar Rahman III of the deposed Umayyad Dynasty, conquered Andalusia from the Abbasid Caliph and reigned (912-961). This was called the Cordoba Caliphate of Spain (912-1031 A.D.). This is the lower horn of Taurus -- 3° later. Notice also the BLACK CRESCENT horn and WHITE gibbous TURBAN crown horn on Taurus -- indicating a total of FOUR contemporary CALIPHATES (Abbisid, Idrisid, Fatimid and Cordoban or Umayyad). Notice also the image of TWO much larger, 150°, HORN CRESCENTS forming the timeline -- indicating the duration of the Moslem goat's empire. Adding the second "five months" (Rev. 9:10), we come to 1062 A.D. (Libra -- Fat Arab CRESCENT "weighed in the balances, and art found wanting" -- Dan. 5:27). Persian Buyids ruled Baghdad from 932 till 1062. Seljuks took over from 1062 till 1258. Chapter 9b: From 1062 A.D. (sun in Sagittarius -- "horses ... on their heads ...crowns like GOLD " -- Rev. 9:7) we add 391° years ("an hour, a day, a month and a year" -- Rev. 9:15) to get 1453 A.D. (lunar crescents in Capricorn -- "four HORNS of the GOLDEN altar" -- Rev. 9:13). On April 27, 1062, Turkish leader Togrul Beg married the Caliph's daughter establishing himself in Islam. He died the same year and was succeeded by Alp Arslan who crossed the Euphrates at the head of the Turkish cavalry (Gibbon ch. 57, p.12). On May 29, 1453 A.D., the Turks conquered Constantinople. At least three more 391-year periods had their fulfillment before the OttomanEmpire ended. Chapter 10: On the 26th of May, just days before Constantinople fell (29th May) in 1453, Greek scholars fled west with illuminating Bible manuscripts -- like a Greek Olympic TORCH held by Orion giving light, making the Bible available to Europe and causing the Renaissance and Protestant Reformation. From 1453 A.D. (Orion -- "mighty angel ... his face as ... the SUN" -- Rev. 10:1) we add 180° years to arrive at 1633 when the Papacy condemned Galileo for believing the earth rotated and revolved around the sun (FULL MOON pendulum attached to Scorpio's stinger proves Galileo right and therefore SEALS "up those things which the seven thunders uttered" -- 10:4) (seven-segmented Scorpio stinger -- 1 Cor. 15:56). By 1483 Caxton published the earliest verses of the Bible to be printed in English. Chapter 11: Luther was born 1483 and Zwingli born 1484. From 1483-4 A.D. (sun in Gemini: "two witnesses ... FIRE proceedeth out of their mouth" -- 11:3-5) + 30° years, equals the 5th of May, 1514 when "the beast (Leo) ... shall ... kill them" (burned at the red radius stake in the sun in Leo -- nothing is left of them) when the ninth session council orator officially declared: "Now no one contradicts, no one opposes." Adding 3 1/2 years (11:11), we arrive at 31st Oct, 1517 when Luther posted his 95 theses to the golden Wittenburg Church doors in Germany, defying Papal Rome and inaugurating the Reformation (sun pumpkin in black cat Leo). After 3 1/2 rotations, Gemini goes from prostrate to right-side up. Pope LEO X excommunicated Luther in 1521. William Tyndale met with other reformers in the White Horse Tavern exactly 3 1/2 years (11:11) from 1517 (SUN in Gemini) in 1521 when the FULL MOON door swung open in the Sagittarius White Horse Tavern. The same "hour" (1517 + 30 degree-years = within 1547), a tenth of the city or 36 degrees of Virgo's 43-degree length, fell beneath the horizon (11:13) symbolizing Papal loss of Protestant England in 1534 with the Act of Supremacy. Henry VIII declared himself head of the English church in 1535 and thus "shut (papal) heaven" (11:6). He expropriated minor monasteries and ordered the Bible placed in every church (1536). England has 36 counties. The remaining seven degrees of Virgo represent papal loss of "seven" (11:13) provinces of Protestant Holland in stages beginning in 1548. If we add 1260° months (11:3) to 1483 (105 years), we arrive at 1587 when Mary Queen of Scots was beheaded; in 1587 Francis Drake also sailed into a crowded Cadiz harbor and destroyed some 30 Spanish ships; and 1588 when the Spanish Armada was defeated (FULL MOON cannonball in Sagittarius: "temple of God was OPENED in heaven ... and there was seen the ark (Argo -- British Navy) -- Rev. 11:19). "The horse and his rider (Sagittarius) hath he thrown into the sea ... they sank ... as a stone ... as lead" (Ex. 15:1-10).
(5.) Chapter 12: In 34 A.D. Stephen was stoned (Acts 7:59) "to end a (490-year) vision and a prophet" (Dan. 9:24) + 280 years (nine months' pregnancy  plus "ten days"  labor pains of Diocletian's persecution -- Isa. 13:8; Matt. 24:8; 1 Th. 5:3; Rev. 2:10) = 313 A.D. (Virgo: "woman clothed with the sun ... brought forth a man child...to rule all nations with a rod of iron" -- Rev. 12:1-5) when Constantine became emperor of Rome and legalized "Christianity" by the Edict of Milan + 293 degree-years = 606 A.D. when Emperor Phocas gave Pope Boniface III supremacy over other churches (eclipse in Cancer: "ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns" -- Rev. 13:1). Also from the sun in Virgo (12:1) 313 + 17° years ("MOON under her [Virgo's] feet" -- 12:1) = 330 when Constantine stole the treasures and statues of the PAGAN temples in Greece to decorate New Rome (Constantinople) and dedicated Constantinople and prohibited PAGAN rites in his new capital. The MOON symbolizes "RULERS of DARKNESS" (Eph. 6:12; Col. 1:13). Constantine put the "MOON under her feet" (12:1). Rome fell in 476 when Cetus began (2 Th. 2:7-8). Also 313 + 150° months = 325 A.D. (moon in Aquarius: "earth opened her mouth" -- 12:16) "when the enemy shall come in like a flood" (Isa. 59:19), the crescent-shaped moon-mouth under Virgo opened up gibbously at Aquarius (324-325) to swallow Licinius's army in 324 when Constantine defeated him at the Battles of Adrianople, Hellespont, and finally Chrysopolis on 18 September 324, and then shut him up within the walls of Byzantium (another open mouth) and executed him in 325 A.D. Notice a white lunar frown before, and a black lunar grin after. The earth opened her mouth in 318 A.D. also and swallowed up armies in burial GRAVES. (150° divided by 30 earth days = 5 lunar days + 313 = 318 A.D.). Constantine's son Crispus was leader in victorious military operations against Franks and Alemanni in 318, 320 and 323. Chapter 13: From 606-607 A.D. (eclipse in Cancer: "ten horns, and upon his horns ten CROWNS" -- 13:1; "mouth as a lion" -- 13:2) when Emperor Phocas gave Pope Boniface III supremacy over other churches + 331 degree-years = 937 A.D. (sun in Gemini: "FIRE ... from heaven ... in the sight of MEN" -- Rev. 13:13) when de facto Abbasid power in Baghdad ended, symbolized by the Caliph's bodyguard being massacred, who were the last body of troops (Gemini) still loyal to the Abbasid dynasty (937); and the NAHRAWAN Canal (Milky Way) being blocked and breached to flood the countryside to impede the advance of an army in 937-938. It heavily impaired local Baghdad agriculture for centuries to come and succeeded in destroying the agriculture of the region, hitherto the breadbasket of the Abbasid capital. Also local provinces refused to send (gold sun coin) tax revenues back to Baghdad (black Zodiac). Now 606-607 + 1260° years ("42 months" -- 13:5) = 1866-1867 A.D. (moon in Capricorn: "another beast...two horns...image [reflection] of the beast" -- 13:11-15) when the Battle of Sadowa occurred where Papal Austria was overthrown by non-Roman Catholic Prussia. Garibaldi overthrew the Papal Venetia in October 1866; and Italy crowned its first king, Victor Emmanuel in 1866. Also, Romania became independent of the Ottoman Empire in 1866 and Serbia became independent one year later. Also 606-607 + 180 degree-months (180/12 = 15) = 622 A.D. (moon in Capricorn: "another beast...two horns...image [reflection] of the beast" -- 13:11-15) when Mohammed fled from Mecca to Medina from his enemies (Hegira). Also 622 + 1260 degree-years ("42 months" -- 13:5) = 1882 (solar years) when Egypt became a British Protectorate or 1844 (lunar years) when Ottomans gave religious liberty to Jews and Christians. The infidel French Revolution punished Roman Catholicism's persecution of Jews and Christians just as atheistic Russian Communism punished Turkish Islam's persecution of Jews and Christians.
(6.) Chapter 14: If we add "1600 furlongs" (years or degrees) (14:20) to 96 A.D., we arrive at the victory of Prince Eugene at the Battle of Zenta on 11 Sept. 1697, resulting in an end to Catholic-Moslem wars, and the Peace of Ryswick signed on 15th Sept. 1697 A.D. ending wars between Catholic and Protestant (SUN in Sagittarius -- "man, having on his head a golden CROWN, -- 14:14), as well as the British Anti-Catholic Settlement of 1697. Sagittarius also has "in his hand a ... (lunar) SICKLE" since Ottoman invaders of Hungary were routed at the Battle of Mohacs Aug. 12, 1687 and Venetians took Athens from the Turks on Sept. 28th, 1687. More importantly, on Sept. 26th, 1687 Amsterdam's city council voted to support William of Orange's invasion of England, which became the Glorious Revolution. Adding 57° years to 1697 we come to 1754 (SUN in Aquarius: "one of the four beasts gave ... seven GOLDEN CUPS" -- 15:7) when Louis XVI was born -- last king of France. Adding 180° to 1697 brings us to 1712° months (Lyra) or 1871-2 lunar° years (Cygnus) or 1874-5 prophetic° years (Aquila) or 1877 solar° years (Sagittarius) (FULL MOON in Gemini: "GRAPES ... FULLY RIPE" 14:19). The Milky Way vine "trodden" by Gemini can be either the Moslem or Roman Catholic vine. Therefore, the red GRAPE under Gemini is the Battle of Vilmergen in 1712 or Franco-Prussian War of 1870-71 -- both Catholic defeats; or the 1875-1877 Herzegovina Uprising against the Ottoman Empire or the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878 -- both Moslem defeats. Adding 180° to 1754, we arrive at 1769° months (Lyra) or 1928-9 lunar° years (Cygnus) or 1931-2 prophetic° years (Aquila) or 1934 solar° years (Sagittarius) (FULL MOON in Leo: "GRAPES ... FULLY RIPE" -- 14:19). The Hydra vine "trodden" by Leo can be either the Moslem or Roman Catholic vine. Therefore, the red grape under Leo is the Russo-Turkish War from 1768 to 1774 or the Battle of Sabilla (1929), Kufra (1931), Kashgar (1933) or the First and Second Battles of Urumqi (1933-34) -- all Muslim defeats -- "and blood came out of the winepress" (14:20). Chapter 15: If we include Louis XVI's life from 1754 till he summoned the Estates-General in 1789 and gave these angry Frenchmen power (sun in Aquarius -- "one of the four beasts gave ...seven golden CUPS full of the wrath of God" -- Rev. 15:7) and add 129° years, we arrive at 1883-1918 A.D. (Gemini --"scorch men with FIRE" -- Rev. 16:8) from when the Triple Alliance was signed (1883) till the end of World War One (1918). This lower class of Frenchmen convened in the Salle des États in Versailles on 5 May 1789, ("temple ...of the testimony in heaven [government] was opened" -- 15:5) (gibbous moon-door opened for Girondins and Jacobins -- together as Gemini) till 1799 A.D. (120° months of Gemini moon) when Napoleon overthrew the Directory and became military dictator for 15 years. Chapter 16: 1789 A.D. (sun in Aquarius: "one of the four beasts [Aquarius] gave...seven golden CUPS full of the wrath of God" -- 15:7) + 129° years = 1918 A.D. (sun in Gemini: "scorch men with FIRE " -- 16:8). 1789 + 120° months = 1799 (moon in Gemini which looks like a guillotine blade falling: "upon the men" -- 16:2). The French Revolution's SORE from 1789-1799 was Catholics having their heads cut off. 1789 + 18° years = 1807 (sun in black Aquarius River that's not circulating.) which marked the last significant naval battle called Battle of Copenhagen: British seized the neutral Dano-Norwegian fleet so it couldn't be used against Britain. 1789 + 6° years = 1795 (Jupiter in black Aquarius River that's not circulating). Napoleon's Revolutionary Wars were waged from 1795 till 1815 against the Roman Catholic ruling classes of other nations. 1789 + 17° years = 1806 (Venus in Pisces). Emperor [sun] of Austria abdicated (Cetus captured by fish). Notice that Cepheus is now behind bars which are heads on pikes. 1918 - 120° years = 1798 (Mars in Pisces). French army captured Rome and Pope arrested and taken away (Cetus tied to fish and pulled). 1918 - 92° years = 1826 (Saturn in Pisces). The Sultan massacred the Janizzaries (Cetus skewered). 1918 - 7° years = 1911 (Mercury neck collar for guillotine in Gemini). The first use of the plane in war was the Italian-Turkish War in 1911. Cetus represents the return to the status quo after 1815. Three vomited frogs or three World Wars (16:13-16), occur in 60 years (two laps around the Zodiac): From the first frog till the second frog is 360° months or 30 years which brings us from the Kaiser's beginning in 1914 till Hitler's end in 1945 (16:13). The "whole world" implies World War. Then finally the Viet Nam War which ended in 1975. It should have been called World War Three. Both World War One and Two were Papal attempts to reverse (REGURGITATE) the FRENCH Revolution and conquer FRANCE. The Viet Nam War was similar -- a Papal attempt to conquer FRENCH Indo-China (mostly Buddhist) and make it Catholic.
(7.) Chapter 17: Garibaldi overthrew the temporal power of the Papal States in 1866-1870 A.D. and they incorporated into the Italian Kingdom of Victor Emmanuel who entered Rome 20 Sept. 1870, exactly 1260 years or "42 months" (Rev. 13:5) after 606-610 A.D. (sun in Cancer: "ten horns...burn her with FIRE" -- 17:16) + 130° years = 11 Sept. 2001 (sun in Ophiuchus-Hercules) when the World Trade Center's Twin Towers were both hit on September 11, within "one hour" of eachother (18:10), and fell (Hercules -- "angel come down ... having great power, and the earth was made BRIGHT with his GLORY" --Rev. 18:1). 1870 - 288° years = 1582 (crescent in Virgo: "golden CUP in her hand" -- 17:4) when the Gregorian Calendar was adopted setting the arbitrary date for "Easter." Also 20 Sept. 1870 (sun in Cancer) - 287° days = 8 December 1869 (crescent in Virgo: "golden CUP in her hand" -- 17:4) when the First Vatican Council convened defining "Papal Infallibility." Since that council did not formally close till 1960, other "abominations and filthiness" discussed at the Vatican could be included in the golden cup. Chapter 18: 20th Sept. 1870 (sun in Cancer: "ten horns...burn her with FIRE" -- 17:16) Rome captured by Italian King Victor Emmanuel II. If we add 130° years to 1870, we come to 11th Sept. 2001 A.D. when the World Trade Center's Twin Towers were both hit on September 11, within "one hour" of eachother, and fell (SUN in Ophiuchus-Hercules -- "angel come down ... having great power ... earth was made BRIGHT with his GLORY" --18:1). Adding 180° months = 11 Sep 2015 (MOON in Taurus: "a mighty angel took up a STONE...and cast it into the sea" -- 18:21) when a crane collapsed in Meccah + 492° days = red radius lunar trumpet on first full day of Trump's presidency -- 21 Jan 2017. One year later (19 Jan 2018) the border wall is on the table in Congress. This is the first bar of the bird cage or rope around Virgo. If we add 300° months to 11 Sep 2001 = 2026 (MOON in Virgo: "in the [LUNAR] CUP which she hath filled, fill to her double" -- 18:6) at the return of our Lord and Savior, Islamistan and Aztlan (composing what was formerly the U.S.) will be "thrown down"? Chapter 19: If we add 25° years to 2001, we arrive at "Great Trumpet" (Matt. 24:31) of Yom Kippur, 2026 A.D. -- the VISIBLE Second Coming of our Lord, WITH his saints (SUN in Sagittarius -- "His eyes were like a flame of FIRE " -- 19:12). He chains and seals Satan the same day (SUN & MOON in Cetus: "set a SEAL upon him" Satan -- 20:3). But the actual SECRET rapture "FOR his bride" on the LONG BLAST of the "last trump" of the Feast of Trumpets (CRESCENT in Sagittarius -- "out of his mouth goeth a sharp SWORD " -- 19:15) may occur on 4 Jan 2024 instead. The "gathering together" comes right after the man of sin is revealed (2 Th. 2:3) (Abomination) which means a mid-trib rapture. "The Son of Man will come (secretly) when LEAST expected" (Matt. 24:44; Luke 12:40) -- not on Rosh HaShanah. The two witnesses (Gemini) ascend "up to heaven in a (lunar) cloud" (Rev. 11:2) three-and-a-half years after they begin testifying (Rev. 11:3). Notice that the (red radius) "rod of iron" (19:15) of 2017 is also a LONG red TRUMPET. Just as Constantine's coming put an end to TEN YEARS of persecution against Christians, so Christ's coming will put an end to TEN YEARS of persecution against Christians (2017-2026). "Birth pangs" begin (Rev. 2:10; 1 Th. 5:3). Furthermore, 4 July 2017 + 360° + 360° + 360°+ 1260° days = 4 Jan 2024 (moon-door opens for five wise virgins: "heaven OPENED " -- 19:11) when Yeshua may graciously resurrect "we which are alive" (1 Th 4:17) to become immortal. But this LUNAR DOOR CLOSES in 2026 when Christ "shutteth and no man openeth" (Yom Kippur) (Rev. 3:7). Adding 335 days to Yom Kippur 2026, our Lord will defeat this world's hostile armies on Sept. 11, 2027 (Ophiuchus -- "angel standing in the SUN " -- 19:17). Chapter 20: If we add 1000° years to 2026 A.D. (+ 360° + 360° + 280°), we arrive at 3026 A.D. when Satan is released again to deceive Gog and Magog (sun in Gemini: "FIRE came down ... and devoured" Gog and Magog -- 20:9). The 12 moons are "THRONES" (20:4) and "BOOKS" (20:12) in 30-degree intervals which may indicate the right to a "speedy trial" or regular Bible study every lunar day or month. (counter-clockwise indicates a pole-shift has taken place in 2026 -- Isa. 24:1) Chapters 21 & 22: "No need of the SUN " means no time anymore; everything is eternal so it is ECLIPSED. "I will give to him that is athirst of the water fountain of life freely" (21:6), so there are twelve LUNAR CUPS. The "lake which burneth with FIRE " (21:8) is an ECLIPSE opposite the lamb. The "twelve GATES were twelve (LUNAR) PEARLS" (21:12, 21) that wax and wane as they open and close. "The lamb is the (FULL MOON) LIGHT of it" (21:23). Also "twelve kinds of (LUNAR) FRUITS " (22:2) and "her (Virgo) LIGHT was like a most precious jasper STONE (amber fire orange cp. Rev. 4:3 & Ez. 1:27) in the form of a gold wedding RING or gold CROWN -- solar corona laid at her feet).
Originally the stars were intended by God to "be for signs" of the Zodiac (Gen. 1:14). Psalm 19:1-4 says, "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge (using sign language). They have no (verbal) speech, they use no (vocal) words; no sound is heard from them. Yet their voice (sign language) goes out into all the earth, their (picto-graphic) words to the ends of the world." But how can we understand this sign language? God calls all the stars "by their names" (Ps. 147:4). When the names are put together into a sentence in order of each star's brightness, a sentence is constructed for each constellation. The constellations begin with Virgo (a virgin) and end with the "Lion of the tribe of Judah" because a "Sphinx," which means "to bind together," has a woman's head and a lion's body and was anciently placed between Leo and Virgo. Furthermore, each of the twelve signs was associated with one of the twelve tribes of Israel (Gen. 37:9-11; Gen. 49 ; Deut. 33). In 96 A.D., the future was revealed to John by means of the Zodiac. This is not astrology (Isa. 47:13-14). The Apocalypse actually predicted the exact date of Constantine's accession as Caesar of Rome in 313 A.D. (ch 12) and the exact date of his death which was in 337 A.D. (ch 6). The Apocalypse also predicted the correct date for the founding of Baghdad in 762 A.D. (ch 9) and the correct date when Persian Buyids subjugated the Caliphate of Baghdad in 937 A.D. (ch 13). The Book of Revelation predicted the precise date beginning Turkish expansion into eastern Europe in 1062 (ch 9) and the fall of Constantinople to the Turks in 1453 (ch 9) as well as the precise date of the downfall of the Turkish Caliphate in 1918 (ch 16). God revealed the exact date when Martin Luther would nail his 95 theses to the door of Wittenburg in 1517 A.D. (ch 11) and the exact date when the Peace of Ryswick would finally end Protestant-Catholic rivalry in 1697 (ch 14). The Apocalypse gave us, ahead of time, the precise date for the rise of Papal Rome in 606 A.D. (ch 12) and the precise ending of this period in 1870 (ch 17) after 1260 years. Louis XVI's reign began in 1754 and ended in 1789 when he was executed. Both of these dates are found by a close study of chapters 14, 15 and 16. From the rise of the United States in 1776 (ch 12) till the beginning of its destruction on September 11, 2001, when the Twin Towers fell (ch 18) -- the dates are recorded by the SUN'S position. The next date given is 2026 A.D. for the second coming of our Lord.
The MILKY WAY (a long green streak bordered by two white streaks) is "WHITE HAIR" (1:14), "WHITE RAIMENT" or "WHITE ROBES" (1:13; 3:4-5,18; 4:4; 6:11; 7:9; 19:8), the AL-CAN highway (3:10), SPUTUM (3:16), an "EMERALD RAINBOW" (4:3; 10:1), a green "SEA of GLASS" (4:6; 7:1,3; 15:2) a white "CLOUD" (10:1; 11:12; 14:14), a "SCROLL" (5:1-9; 6:14; 10:2,8-10), the green trunk of a "FIG TREE" (6:13), a "GREAT MULTITUDE" (7:9), the "SMOKE" of "INCENSE" (8:4) or of the "PIT" (9:2) or of "TORMENT" (14:11) or of "GOD" (15:8) or of "HER BURNING" (18:9,18; 19:3) and "FIRE from the ALTAR" (8:5), "GREEN GRASS" (8:7), a "GREAT MOUNTAIN" (8:8), a "STAR FELL" (8:10; 9:1), "STREET" (11:8), "FLOOD" (12:15-16), white "SAND of the (green) SEA" (13:1; 20:8), "FIRE COME DOWN" (13:13; 20:9), "MOUNT ZION" (14:1), BITTER HERBS (16), Christ's "ARMIES" in white uniforms; the world's "ARMIES" in green uniforms (19:14,19), a "GREAT CHAIN" (20:1), "GOG and MAGOG" (20:8) and the green "RIVER of WATER of LIFE" (21:6; 22:1; 22:17). The STARS symbolize "CLOUDS" (1:7), "EYES" (4:6-8), weeping TEARS (5:4; 7:17; 18:11; 21:4), FALLING "STARS" (6:13; 12:4), or "FIGS" (6:13), a "SCROLL" rolled up (6:14), falling "ROCKS" (6:16), 144,000 "SERVANTS OF OUR GOD" (7:3; 14:1), "HAIL" (8:7; 11:19; 16:21), the "SEAL OF GOD" (9:4), "200,000,000 HORSEMEN" (9:16), "GENTILES" (11:2), a "MARK" (13:16; 14:9-11; 15:2; 19:20), "GRAPES" (14:18), "SORES" (16:2,11), HOLES in matzah (16), "GOLD, SILVER, PRECIOUS STONES and PEARLS" etc (17:4; 18:12,16), "ARMIES" (19:14,19), "FOWLS" (19:17), "SOULS" (20:4), "CAMP of the SAINTS" (20:9), the "DEAD" (20:12-13) and "LEAVES" (22:2). The visible PLANETS (moon, sun, Jupiter, Venus, Mars, Saturn, Mercury) form a seven-branched MENORAH held by Sagittarius (Rev. 1:12,20; 2:1; 3:1); a scroll with SEVEN SEALS (5:1); a SEVEN-HEADED DRAGON when they are near Hydra (12:3; 17:3,7); or seven"GOLDEN GIRDLES" on seven angels who are given SEVEN "CUPS" of freedom (the second Passover cup -- ten plagues) from Aquarius (15:6-8; 16; 21:9).
The MOON'S position in the zodiac makes it a part of the constellation it is travelling through. The CRESCENT is a "HORN" (5:6; 9:13) on Capricorn, or a "SICKLE" (14:14), or a two-edged "SWORD" (1:16; 2:12,16; 6:4; 19:15,21) that comes as a thief in the night (3:3) in the hand of Sagittarius. Two opposing CRESCENTS form a "BOTTOMLESS PIT" (9:2). The HALF MOON phase or thereabouts is a "BOWL" (16:2), or "CUP" (17:4; 18:6) in Virgo's hand. The gibbous phase is a BUCKET LID (11:6) or CROWN (3:11). The FULL MOON is a "LAMPSTAND" (2:5; 21:23), "WHITE STONE" (2:17), "MANNA" (2:17), "EYE SALVE" (3:18), "SEAL" (7:2; 10:4) or "MILLSTONE" (18:21). The DARK MOON in eclipse is a "SEAL" (7:2), "WOUND" (13:3), "BOTTOMLESS PIT" (20:1), or "LAKE OF FIRE" (20:10). The MOON is a "DOOR" or "GATE" that opens (FULL) and closes (CRESCENT or NEW) (3:7-8;20; 4:1; 11:19; 15:5; 19:11; 21:13). It is a "MOUTH" that opens (full) and closes (crescent) in a frown or smile (12:16; 13:5) or "BOOKS" (20:12), "FRUIT" (22:2) or "PEARLS," black or white, (21:21) in any lunar phase.
The SUN visually becomes part of the constellation it is travelling through. The sun is one of seven "EYES" of the Lamb (Aries) (5:6) or the flaming "EYES" of Sagittarius (1:14; 2:18; 19:12). It is one of the "SEALS" keeping the Milky Way scroll closed (6:1; 8:1) or Satan (Cetus) bound (20:3) or God's servants protected (7:3). It is a "golden CROWN" on Sagittarius's head (2:10; 6:2; 9:7; 14:14) or "ten CROWNS" on the ten horns of Cancer (13:1). It is a "golden CENSER" (8:3) in the hand of Sagittarius, and a "golden ALTAR" (9:13) of Capricorn -- since both a goat and an altar have horns. The SUN is the "FACE" (10:1) or halo of Orion and "FIRE" in Gemini (11:5; 13:13; 16:8; 20:9) or Cancer (17:16). The SUN "CLOTHES" Virgo (12:1) and also makes her look pregnant "WITH CHILD" (12:2). The SUN is a "golden CUP" (15:7) or bucket in Aquarius's hand that is poured out, or the "GLORY" (18:1) of Ophiuchus. As a solar eclipse, both SUN and MOON form a "BOTTOMLESS PIT" (20:1) or "LAKE OF FIRE" (20:10,14-15) in Aries or Virgo (21:8) (and GOLD RING). "Thy will be done in earth, as it is in (the astronomical) HEAVEN" (Matt. 6:10). The time frames begin in 96 A.D. when John received the vision on Patmos (ch 4-7), but later chapters have as their starting points 402 A.D. (ch 8-11) or in the case of the "back side" (Rev. 5:1) of the book, 313 A.D. (ch 12-13) or 1697 A.D. (ch 14-16) or 1870 A.D. (ch 17-22). Readers must "measure the (360-degree celestial) temple of God" (11:1) counting degrees clockwise (except ch 20-22) and realize that Revelation is written chronologically in three parts: Revelation 1-3 is one part, 4-11 is the second part and 12-22 is the third part. Reset back to the beginning for each part. See the "Seven-Part Timeline of the Apocalypse" at the end of this book for more
Chapter 1 -- Messiah Gives Holy Spirit
to Seven Churches Typifying Seven Planets
This is "The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bore record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw. Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand" (Rev. 1:1-3).
John received visions from Jesus Christ in 96 A.D. while exiled on the Isle of Patmos by Emperor Domitian for preaching the Gospel. Irenaeus, who was the disciple of Polycarp, who had been the disciple of John, says in Heresies (180 A.D.) that Revelation was written by John in 96 A.D. "at the close of Domitian's reign", and Eusebius's Ecclesiastical History agrees. Eusebius also mentions that after John's banishment at Patmos had ended, John went and lived at Ephesus, where he was buried (about 100 A.D.).
Daniel's 70th Week ended in 34 A.D. with Stephen's martyrdom (Dan. 9:24; Acts 7:59) and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the household of Cornelius. For 40 years of testing, the Jews resisted the Gospel (Ps. 95:10). Seven years before Jerusalem was destroyed a citizen went about the city, crying aloud: "A voice from the east, a voice from the west, a voice from the four winds, a voice against Jerusalem and the Holy House, a voice against the bridegrooms and the brides, and a voice against this whole people... Woe to the city, and to the people, and to the Holy House." He was flogged by the Roman procurator, yet he never desisted. At the great Feasts his efforts were redoubled amongst the immense crowds. He was killed in the seige by a Roman stone, crying to the last: "WOE, WOE, WOE." (Wars 6:5:3; A Roman eagle cries the same in Rev 8:13). In 66 A.D. 'There was a STAR resembling a sword, which stood over the city (Jerusalem), even a comet, that continued a whole year' (Wars 6:5:3). This was Halley's comet visible to the naked eye from 21 January to 11 April 66 ("A burning STAR falls" -- 3rd trumpet 8:10). In 66 A.D. Jews rebelled against Imperial Rome. Jerusalem (including Christians) was surrounded by the legions of Cestius Gallus. The "Abomination of DESOLATION" (Matt. 24:15) is defined in Luke 21:20 as "Jerusalem compassed with ARMIES" that cause "DESOLATION." Then the Roman commander withdrew "for no apparent reason" (Wars 2:19). Jewish Zealots pursued and attacked the army ferociously. This gave a brief opportunity for Christians to obey our Lord's advice and "depart out of the midst of" Jerusalem and "flee to the mountains" (Luke 21:20-22)."The whole body of the church at Jerusalem having been commanded by a divine Revelation ["Let us remove hence." -- Wars 6:5:3]... removed from the city, and dwelt in a certain town beyond Jordan, called Pella" (Eusebius 3:5:2). Jerusalem was built on SEVEN MOUNTAINS (17:9) and so the Jerusalem Church did "Come out of her, my people" (18:4). Returning Zealots didn't tolerate "deserters." In the Spring of 67 the Roman legions flattened the approach roads: "[Vespasian] sent both footmen and horsemen to LEVEL the road, which was mountainous and rocky" (Wars 3.7.3; 3.7.8). Thus, "every mountain ... (was) MOVED" (Rev. 6:14). In 69 A.D. Vespasian became emperor and his son Titus returned with his Roman Legions (white horse -- 6:2). His commanders said 'the providence of God is on our side, by setting our enemies at variance against one another' (Josephus 4:6:2) (red horse -- 6:3). Rival factions of Eleazar the son of the high priest, John of Gischala and Simon the captain of the Idumeans, were so bitter in their mutual hatred that they burnt one another's stocks of grain causing famine within Jerusalem (black horse -- 6:5) (Wars 18,20,22) (Isa 3:1,8) and "the great city was divided into THREE PARTS" (Rev 16:19) (Wars 5:1:1,4) (Eze 5:2,12; cp Jer 15:2). The fig tree was shaken of a mighty wind (6:13) (cp Luke 13:6-9; Mark 11:13,14; Matt. 24:32; Heb. 3:17). Judaism rolled up like a scroll (6:14). Romans gained possession of the first wall in 15 days. The second wall in 8 days. But the 3rd wall was 60 feet high and 15 feet deep. This is the "THIRD PART" (Rev. 8-9). The Romans laid siege to Jerusalem, dug a trench around it and built a wall 39 furlongs (Luke 19:43). Every tree for ten miles around was cut down for seige towers or crosses (8:7). Roman catapults called "SCORPIONS" threw stones weighing a TALENT each (Wars 5:6:3; Rev. 9:10; 16:21). The insolent rebel, John of Gischala, refused to surrender to Titus claiming that God's city could never be taken. But Zion was plowed as a field (Micah 3:11-12). Herod's Temple was burned to the ground where Jews made their last stand ("FOURTH PART" -- 6:8). "Wherever the carcass is (Shammaite Judaism), there will the EAGLES (Roman ensigns) be gathered together" (Matt. 24:28). Roman legions carried their standards, the EAGLE and the SERPENT (both unclean), into the Temple and sacrified before them in the traditional Roman manner -- an ox, a sheep and a PIG (unclean) -- hence "ABOMINATION of Desolation" in another sense. The Jews hid underground "in the (limestone) DENS and in the ROCKS" (Rev. 6:15). "On the following days [the Romans] searched the hiding places, and fell upon those that were UNDERGROUND and in the CAVERNS" (Wars 3.7.36; 11:7:3 & 11:2:1) Cp Mat 24:1,2,19,34. This was the Day of Wrath in AD 70 (6:16) (Luke 23:29-30). One million Jews perished by famine and sword (pale horse -- 6:8). Ninety thousand were sold into slavery.
The Levite priesthood had been "arrayed in PURPLE and SCARLET" (Rev. 17:4) (Exodus 28: 5, 6, 8 etc.) with "GOLD and PRECIOUS STONES" on the High Priest's breastplate. "A golden CUP full of abominations" (17:4) was the CUP of jealousy for the trial of the bitter waters (Numbers 5) alluded to in Ezekiel 23:25, 32-34. Our Lord said to harlot Jerusalem,“FILL ye UP the measure of your fathers” (Matthew 23 :28). Instead of YHWH being written on the High Priest's crown (Ex. 28:36), "upon her forehead (was) a name written MYSTERY BABYLON" (17:5) -- due to Babylonian Talmudic traditions (Mark 7:7-8)? Jerusalem was "DRUNK with the blood of the saints" (17:6). “Upon you will come all the righteous blood shed upon the face of the earth” (Matthew 23:35). “I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute” (Luke 11:49) "And the light of a lamp (MENORAH) shall shine no more at all in thee" (18:23). Titus took it to Rome. As Jesus said: 'Except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened' (Mat 24:22). They were SHORTENED. The first great siege of Jerusalem, prototype of AD 70, by Nebuchadnezzar ended on precisely the same day of the year as did the siege of Titus, but it had lasted a whole YEAR whereas this for the elect's sake (Their prayers for Jerusalem) was concluded within the astonishingly short period of FIVE MONTHS (Rev. 9:10). The duration of the actual siege of Jerusalem was from April 14 to September 8 -- "FIVE (lunar Jewish) MONTHS" (Rev. 9:10) just as the time flood waters prevailed on earth was FIVE MONTHS (Gen 7:24; cp Luk 17:26) .On the Sea of Galilee a Jewish fleet was defeated by many ships commandeered by the Romans. 'One might see the lake all BLOODY, and full of dead bodies, for not one of them escaped. And a terrible stink, and a very sad sight, there was on the following days over the country. In this way thousands were slain' (3:10:9). Likewise, on the Mediterranean coast, a fleet of Jewish pirates was destroyed in a mighty storm. Roman soldiers slew those who reached land. 'The sea was BLOODY a long way, and the maritime ports were full of dead bodies... the number of the bodies ... thrown out of the sea was 4,200' (Wars 3:9:3) (A "third of the sea turned to BLOOD" -- 2nd trumpet 8:8) ("sea and waves roaring"). Josephus and a friend escaped Jotapata (Wars 3:8:8), like Orion (Rev. 10), to preserve truth.
"Titus ... had with him those THREE LEGIONS that had accompanied his father, when he laid Judea waste (5th, 10th, &15th), together with that 12th LEGION which had been formerly beaten with Cestius ...FOUR LEGIONS ... There followed him also three thousand, drawn from those that guarded the river EUPHRATES" (Wars 5:1:6). FOUR Roman LEGIONS out of 26 in the entire Empire were concentrated to suppress Jewish opposition and their fighting strength was approximately 60,000 men -- most of them cavalry (Wars 3.4.2; 5.1.6). (These are the "FOUR ANGELS" loosed from "the EUPHRATES" -- 6th trumpet 9:14). From Spring of 67 to 10th August of 70, the time of formal Imperial engagement against Jerusalem is a period of 42 MONTHS (Rev 11:2 Cp Luk 24:21)" “for it (the temple court, symbolizing unbelieving Jewry) is given to the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot 42 MONTHS.” (Rev. 11:2) Just as JEWS of their PRINCE Messiah destroyed Christ's fleshly TEMPLE (John 2:19), so the ROMAN army of Titus their PRINCE leveled the stone TEMPLE to the ground because the gold had melted between the cracks. Thus "there shall not be ... one stone (left) upon another" (Matt. 24:2) by this army "FLOOD" (Dan. 9:26). "If ye have faith and doubt not ... ye shall say to this (persecuting) mountain (Mount Zion and its temple), Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and it shall be done" (Mat 21:21). It was! (cp Mat 21:21; Jer 51:25,32,63). The “great mountain burning with fire” (2nd trumpet -- 8:8), with its altar fire which never went out, was cast into the sea.
Meanwhile, Simon Magus (the Sorcerer) of Samaria feigned conversion to Christianity (Acts 8:9-23) and set up a Babylonian Mystery cult. When Justin Martyr wrote his Apology (152 A.D.) the sect of the Simonians appears to have been formidable, for he speaks four times of their founder Simon ... and says that he CAME TO ROME in the days of Claudius Caesar (45 A.D.) and made such an impression by his magical powers that he was honoured as a god, a statue being erected to him on the Tiber between the two bridges bearing the inscription, "Simoni deo Sancto," Simon the holy god" (Dict. of Christian Biog. 4:682). Hence the Papal claim to being the successor of a "Simon Peter" in Rome when the apostle Peter was never in Rome (Rom. 15:20). But how did Simon Magus acquire the name "Peter"? Genesis 40:5-18 uses the Hebrew words PITHRON and PATHAR which are translated into the English word "INTERPRET." Deuteronomy 23:4 mentions Balaam the soothsayer of PETHOR in Babylonia -- a sacred high place of INTERPRETATION. Babylonian priests claimed the sole power to INTERPRET the pagan mysteries. "Ancient history reveals that the pagan deities worshipped by the Babylonians and the Greeks were known as PETERS, not only the gods but the Hierophantal (special gods) in most temples and those priests in particular who were occupied in the celebration of mysteries were styled PATRES" (Bryant's Ancient Mythology 1:354). The truth is that Linus (2 Tim. 4:21) was the first bishop of Rome. He was the son of Caractacus, the British king who was defeated by Claudius in 51 A.D. and taken in chains to Rome with his family. Paul was under house arrest in Rome at the same time and wrote his epistle to Timothy. Paul at this time obeyed Christ's command to "Bear my name before ... kings" (Acts 9:15).
The Book of Revelation was written in code because the pagan Roman Empire ruled Palestine in 96 A.D. and persecuted Christians who taught that Rome would eventually fall. Babylonian Mystery cults also were a threat. By taking Old Testament examples and figuratively applying them to Rome and her cult, Christians understood while Romans remained ignorant. Furthermore, with the passage of time in the Christian Dispensation, the Old Testament was pushed into the background as "Christianity" rejected the law of God. Copies of the New Testament alone were printed. But by putting the interpretation of the symbols in the Old Testament, our Lord was forcing a return to the Old Testament scriptures before understanding of the Apocalypse could be gained. Thus, false Christians who have none of the "works" or "obedience" are automatically blinded. These prophecies "must SHORTLY come to pass" meaning the "HISTORICIST" rather than "futurist" school of prophecy is the primary fulfillment of this pre-written history. John had been promised that he would "tarry till I (Christ) come" (John 21:22) and these visions fulfilled that promise. God's "angel" is Jesus Christ (cp. Gen. 48:16; Ex. 23:20-22, etc.). The word "SIGNIFIED" (semaino) means "to show by signs and symbols." John 21:19 says, "this spake he SIGNIFYING (semaino) by what death he should glorify God." Our Lord did not say to Peter literally, "You will be crucified." Instead he used phrases which would not be intelligible till the fulfillment took place. In the same way, Revelation must be de-coded by using European history and the Bible itself.
"John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne; And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty" (Rev. 1:4-8).
Our Lord instructed John to send it to seven nearby churches in Asia Minor. Why ASIA Minor? Because "the (Israelite) sojourners of the dispersion (were) scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, ASIA, and Bithynia" (1 Pet. 1:1; see also 2 Esdras 13:39-42 & Josephus 11:5:2). Notice that on the day of Pentecost, Peter addressed these men of "ASIA" (Acts 2:9) in Jerusalem saying, "let all the house of ISRAEL know..." (Acts 2:36). They were all "BRETHREN" (Acts. 2:36) -- adelphos -- blood relationship, not philadelphos -- faith relationship. Yes, "the twelve tribes ... (were) SCATTERED abroad" (James 1:1). Israel was in DISPERSION (John 7:35). Our Lord sent his disciples "to the lost sheep of the house of ISRAEL" (Matt. 15:24) "not into the way of the Gentiles" (Matt. 10:5-6) and they didn't go to the Jews in Palestine. Peter wrote, "Ye are a CHOSEN generation, a ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, an HOLY NATION, a PECULIAR people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: Which in times past were NOT A PEOPLE but are now the people of God: which had NOT OBTAINED MERCY but now have obtained mercy"(1 Pet. 2:9-10). God bestowed these titles on Israel (Ex. 19:5-6). The designations of "NOT MY PEOPLE" and "NOT HAVING RECEIVED MERCY" refer to Israel (Hos. 1:6-9).They are his Israelite "SERVANTS" (1:1). "Thou art my SERVANT, O Israel" (Isa. 49:3). Since the majority of Christians have sprung from the Anglo-Saxon Celtic race, the first reigning election of "kings and priests" will consist largley of ISRAELITE stock. In fact the Greek "ecclesia" (called out ones) comes from the Hebrew "cahal" (called out) found in Genesis 28:3 referring to ABRAHAM'S descendants -- "an assembly ("cahal") of people." See also Genesis 35:11 where it refers to JACOB'S descendants. The Greek word translated "church" is "ecclesia" which was always translated congregation prior to the 17th century. William Tyndale used the word congregation as did Coverdale in 1535 to be followed by Wittingham in 1557. Three years later in 1560, the word congregation was dropped and "church" substituted although versions of the Great Bible continued to use the original word for ten more years. "JEW and GREEK" in the New Testament (Acts 18:4; 19:10; 20:21; 1 Cor. 1:22) corresponds to "house of JUDAH and house of ISRAEL" in the Old Testament. Greeks were not Gentiles (Acts 14:1-2). Paul says the Ephesians were "aliens" (alienated or separated) "from ... ISRAEL" (Eph. 2:13) meaning they must at one time have belonged to it. The English word "church" is from Greek "kuriakos" meaning "belonging to the Lord." This word is borrowed from Gothic nations and became the German word Kirche, the Anglo-Saxon Cyrise, the Dutch kerke, the Scottish Kirk, and eventually the English Church. The phrase "Him which is, and which was, and which is to come" found in 1:4,8 is a Greek paraphrase of the Hebrew "Yahweh." The KJV "for ever and ever" of verse 6 is, in Greek, "for the ages of the ages, which refers to the Millenium and post-Millenial ages of the Kingdom of God on the earth. God promised to make physical ISRAEL "kings and priests" in the Promised Land which was a type of the Millenium (Ex. 19:5-6; 1 Pet. 2:9-10). Now these same physical ISRAELITES dwelling in Asia Minor (1 Pet. 1:1-2; 2:9-10; 2 Pet. 3:15; Eph. 2:12-14; Rom. 11:5), through the remission of sins, are made "kings and priests" in the Millenium and after -- better promises. In Hebrew the "Aleph" and "Tau" were the first and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet. They were inscribed on two stones which formed an integral part of the "breastplate of the High Priest. "Thou shalt put in the breastplate of judgment, the Urim and the Thummin : and they shall be upon Aaron's heart, when he goeth in unto the holy place" (Ex. 28:30). These stones are mentioned also in Lev. 8:8; Nu. 27:21; Deut. 33:8; 1 Sam. 28:6; Ezra 2:63; and Neh. 7:65. The priests used these stones when there were questions about the Law. They were called the Yea Stone and the Nay Stone and when the priest stood before the altar with a question, the Glory shone on one or other of these stones signifying either Yes or No. -- with no arbitration in terms of indeterminate answers. Perhaps Messiah is emphasizing that He is the "Yes" and "No", not what men think. Look to Him, not men's opinions.
What do CLOUDS mean? Christians are DEW DROPS ("remnant of Jacob ... like DEW" -- Micah 5:7; cp. Jude 1:12) that will RISE (evaporate) "be caught up together" (1 Th. 4:17) from "many WATERS" ("people" -- Rev. 17:15) up into CLOUDS ("a great cloud of [resurrected] witnesses" -- Heb. 12:1; 1 Th. 4:17) typifying the resurrection of saints when Christ our SUN returns ("the SUN of righteousness ARISE" -- Mal. 4:2) in Millenial DAWN (Ps. 110:3; Isa. 26:19). The DEW DROPS wait in DARKNESS (hades or grave) but begin to sparkle and refract with prismatic glory and starlike splendor when the SUN RISES. Then the SUN'S heat EMPOWERS them to RISE invisibly until they reappear at the atmospheric DEW point in the form of CLOUDS (authority to rule in the political heaven as kings and priests -- Rev. 5:10). Just as a CLOUD received him as he left the earth (Acts 1:9), so also "He cometh with CLOUDS" referring to a "CLOUD of WITNESSES" (Heb. 12:1) -- "ten thousands of his SAINTS" (Jude 14-15; Dan. 7:22) "who meet the Lord in the air" (1 Th. 4:17) as well as a CLOUD (Matt. 24:30) of "holy ANGELS with him" (Matt. 25:31). Zechariah 12:10-11 mentions that Jews who pierced their Messiah will mourn at his coming because of their previous rejection of him. Jesus Christ as "alpha" created man in his physical image, but man lost paradise in Genesis. Jesus Christ as "omega" will finish that creation in his character-image and restore paradise in Revelation using Israelites.
"I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea. And I turned to see the voice that spake with me. And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; And in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the chest with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp two-edged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death" (Rev. 1:9-18).
The "Lord's Day" is the "Day of the Lord" (Acts 17:31; 1 Cor. 5:5; 2 Cor. 1:14; 1 Th. 5:2; Phil. 1:6). In John's first vision, he is apparently looking east while standing in the Court of the Priests. He hears a voice behind him (cp. "this is the way, walk in it" -- Isa. 30:21). He turns around to see the HIGH PRIEST re-fueling the seven-branched Menorah CANDLESTICK with OLIVE OIL to bring LIGHT to the Temple's HOLY PLACE. This typified the MESSIAH re-fueling the SEVEN CHURCH eras in history by the HOLY SPIRIT so they can explain the BIBLE to the House of ISRAEL (see Zech. 4:1-6). There would be seven stages in the history of Christianity. The "sharp two-edged SWORD" represents the two points of the lunar crescent attached to the arrow of Sagittarius meaning the "WORD of GOD" -- both Old and New Testaments (Heb. 4:12; Eph. 6:17). CHRIST is the promised HIGH "PRIEST for ever after the order of Melchizedec" (Heb. 5:6) of which the human High Priests were mere types. High Priests wore a "girdle" and a "robe" (Ex. 28:4 & 29:5) like those described here. "EYES as a FLAME of FIRE" (Rev. 1:14; 2:18) is one who "SEARCHETH the MINDS and HEARTS" (Rev. 2:23). Penetrating sight. "He is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart" (Heb. 4:12-13). "The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good" (Pr. 15:3) just as the rider in chapter nineteen has these same eyes and the same sword. Having "neither BEGINNING of DAYS nor END of LIFE" (Heb. 7:3), he is the ALPHA and OMEGA. "Declaring the END (of history) from the BEGINNING (of time)" (Isa. 46:10) he is the ALPHA and OMEGA. His credentials are that he is the FIRST immortal man born from the dead, the "alpha," and his appearance proves it. Also when all men are made immortal like him, "THEN shall the Son also himself be subject unto Him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all" (1 Cor. 15:28). Therefore He is the "omega" or LAST. He can bring forth "all that are in their graves" (John 5:28). In 1 Corinthians 15:26 we are told "the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death." "Hades, I will be thy destruction" (Hos. 13:14). Jesus is "the resurrection and the life."
"Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter; The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches" (Rev. 1:19-20).
Who are the STARS? The seven lighted wicks or "STARS" or "angels" are messengers of the seven churches -- the LEADING human TEACHER of each church. The Torah READER (Luke 4:16; Acts 13:15,27; 15:21) or WRITER or MESSENGER (Haggai 1:13) of the Synagogue was known as the "angel" of the Synagogue. "Angels" (Heb. "elohim") can refer to human "judges" or "rulers" (Ex. 22:8,28; Ps. 82:6). The twelve STARS in Joseph's dream represented the LEADERS of the twelve tribes of Israel (Gen. 37:9-10). In Balaam's prophecy, our LORD is a "STAR out of Jacob" (Num. 24:17). The little horn "cast down ... the STARS to the ground, and stamped upon ... the MIGHTY and the HOLY PEOPLE" -- Jews and Christians (Dan. 8:9-24). "They that turn many to RIGHTEOUSNESS" are like "the STARS" (Dan.12:3). Our Lord says, "I am ... the bright and morning STAR" (Rev. 22:16). "STARS" therefore represent RIGHTEOUS RULERS described as burning wicks.
A True History of the True Church (Ephesus to Pergamos)
The Ephesus Era Was Called Nazarene
Where is the true church? How can we identify it? Matthew 16:18 says, "Thou art Peter (Gr. "Petros" masculine meaning"stone"), and upon this rock (Gr. "Petra" feminine meaning "massive rock") I will build my church, and the gates of hades ("the grave") shall not prevail against it." And Paul says "the Rock was Christ" (1 Cor.10:4) -- not Peter. "For other foundation no one can lay but that which has been laid which is Jesus Christ" (1 Cor.3:11). The true church, built on Christ's teaching, would continue to exist through every century down to our day today.
In Judaea, Jewish Christians met together with Jews in synagogues but by about 85 A.D., to make sure of their exclusion, a formal anathema was incorporated in the synagogue liturgy: 'May the Nazarenes and the heretics be suddenly destroyed and removed from the Book of Life.' (p. 21, Chadwick's Early Church). This shows us that Christians actually still considered themselves JEWS long after Christ's death (cp. Rom.2:29). This also shows us the Ephesus Era was called Nazarene. Ephesus means "Desirable" because not only was the city located in a very desirable geographic location, but that period of church history when the apostles were living and could personally guide the people was a desirable period.
"Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks; I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy lampstand out of his place, except thou repent" (Rev. 2:1-5).
"Lampstand" refers to the FULL MOON in Gemini. Perhaps Timothy was the angel (1 Tim. 1:3). Paul visited Ephesus in 56 A.D. and baptised them (Acts 19:1-6). Many Ephesians burned their books on witchcraft because of Paul's witness there (Acts 19:18-20). Just as the city of Ephesus was the first of seven cities on a mail route, so also the Ephesus Era (lit. "Desirable") was the first of seven chronological eras of church history portrayed by the seven-branched Menorah. The first believers were called "Christians" (Acts 11:26) or "Nazarenes" (24:5) who fled from Jerusalem to Pella (Wars 6:5:3) in 69 A.D. They were called "Nazarenes" because Nazareth was where Jesus grew up (Matt.2:23).
What did the Nazarenes believe? According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, 11th edition volume 19, page 319, "NAZARENES (Nag'copaiot), an obscure Jewish-Christian sect, existing at the time of Epiphanius (fl. A.D. 370) in Coele-Syria, Decapolis (Pella) and Basanitis (Cocabe). According to that authority (Panarion, xxix. 7) they dated their settlement in Pella from the time of the flight of the Jewish Christians from Jerusalem, immediately before the siege in A.D. 70; he characterizes them as neither more nor less than JEWS PURE AND SIMPLE, but adds that they recognized the new covenant as well as the old, and believed in the resurrection, and in the one God and His Son Jesus Christ. He cannot say whether their christological views were identical with those of Cerinthus and his school, or whether they differed at all from his own. But Jerome (Ep. 79, to Augustine) says that they believed in Christ. the Son of God, born of the Virgin Mary, who suffered under Pontius Pilate, and rose again, but adds that, " desiring to be BOTH JEWS and CHRISTIANS, they are neither the one nor the other." They used the Aramaic recension of the Gospel according to Matthew, which they called the Gospel to the Hebrews, but, while ADHERING as far as possible to the MOSAIC economy as regarded CIRCUMCISION, SABBATHS, FOODS and the like, they did not refuse to recognize the apostolicity of Paul or the rights of heathen Christians (Jer., Comm. in Isa., ix. I). These facts, taken along with the name (cf. Acts xxiv. 5) and geographical position of the sect, lead to the conclusion that the Nazarenes of the 4th century are, in spite of Epiphanius's distinction, to be identified with the Ebionites (q.v.). "Christianity offered itself to the world, armed with the strength of the MOSAIC LAW ... The divine authority of Moses and the prophets was admitted, and even established, as the FIRMEST BASIS of Christianity.... The history of the church of Jerusalem affords a lively proof ... of the deep impression which the JEWISH RELIGION had made on the minds of its sectaries. The first fifteen bishops of Jerusalem were all circumcised JEWS; and the congregation over which they presided UNITED the LAW OF MOSES with the doctrine of Christ.... The Jewish converts ... who had laid the foundations of the church, soon found themselves overwhelmed by the increasing multitudes that from all the various religions of polytheism enlisted under the banner of Christ: and the Gentiles ... rejected the intolerable weight of Mosaic ceremonies ... The Nazarenes ... elected Marcus for their bishop, a prelate of the race of the gentiles ... At his persuasion the most considerable part of the congregation RENOUNCED the MOSAIC LAW, in the practice of which they had persevered above a century" (31 A.D. till after 131 A.D.) (Gibbon's Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire,15:181-182).
The historians Philip Schaff and Johann Gieseler confirm the fact that the true church kept the Mosaic Law:
The Jewish Christians, at least in Palestine, conformed as closely as possible to the venerable forms of the cultus of their fathers, which in truth were divinely ordained, and were an expressive type of the Christian worship. So far as we know, they scrupulously observed the Sabbath, the annual Jewish feasts, the hours of daily prayer, and the whole Mosaic ritual (Schaff, Philip, History of the Christian Church, Chapter 9. Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc. 1997. This material has been carefully compared, corrected¸ and emended according to the 1910 edition of Charles Scribner's Sons by The Electronic Bible Society, Dallas, TX, 1998.)
While the Jewish Christians of Palestine retained the entire Mosaic law, and consequently the Jewish festivals, the Gentile Christians observed also the Sabbath and the passover (1 Cor. v. 6-8), with reference to the last scenes of Jesus' life, but without Jewish superstition (Gal. iv. 10 ; Col. ii. 16) (Gieseler, Johann Karl Ludwig. A text-book of church history, Volume I, Chapter II. New York : Harper & brothers. Date 1857-80).
"Before the second century was half gone ... the 'Mystery of Iniquity,' had so largely spread over the east and the west ... that a large part of the Christian OBSERVANCES and INSTITUTIONS, even in this century, had the aspect of the PAGAN MYSTERIES" (Mosheim, Ecclesiastical History, Cent.2, Part 2, Ch.4, Paragraph 1).
What was their "first LOVE" (Rev.2:4)? "This is the LOVE of God, that we KEEP his COMMANDMENTS: and his commandments are not grievous" (1 John 5:3). "If ye LOVE me, KEEP my COMMANDMENTS" (John 14:15). "This is LOVE, that we WALK AFTER (in accordance with) his COMMANDMENTS" (2 John 6). "He that hath my COMMANDMENTS, and KEEPETH them, he it is that LOVETH me" (John 14:21). The whole value of affection and friendship is in its practical manifestations.
"But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God" (Rev. 2:6-7).
What were "the DEEDS of the NICOLAITANS" (Rev.2:6)? "Nicolaitans" comes from Greek: nikao - subdue and laos - people. They were followers of Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch" (Acts 6:5) who taught that DEEDS of the FLESH do not affect the purity of the soul, and consequently have no bearing on salvation (Hippolytus Refut. 7:24; Irenaeus Against Heresies 1:26:3). Therefore it was unnecessary to curb the desires of the flesh as required by the moral law. As Sir William Ramsay points out, they joined the craft guilds and thus were required to pay worshipful homage to the emperor. Idolatry and fornication were a normal part of Roman "civilization." There were temple prostitutes, banquets and orgies in temples with all foods offered to idols (cp Act 15:20; 1Co 6:12-20; 1Co 8; 10:14-33; Rev 14:4). They may have been the group in Ephesus referred to by Paul (Acts 19:19) who burned their magic books.
God "REMOVED their lampstand" (Rev.2:5) from the Temple in Jerusalem to Rome in 70 A.D. It was removed again when Hadrian's edict in 135 A.D. SCATTERED the old church of Jerusalem. In type the actual city of Ephesus, known as "the Light of Asia" (Pliny), has SHIFTED several miles from the place it once occupied also, owing to the silting up of the river estuary.
What does "He that hath an ear, let him HEAR" mean? Isaiah 50:4-5 says, "He waketh mine ear to HEAR as the learned. The Lord God hath OPENED (Lit. "digged") mine ear, and I was not rebellious." A servant for life had his ear "digged" or pierced (Ex. 21:6) and therefore OBEYED. Only those who obey God have ears pierced to hear. "To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life which is in the midst of the paradise of God" (2:7). Certain trees were worshipped by the pagans in Ephesus and so this remark ties in with Ephesus especially.
Ephesus was the city of Artemis, the moon-goddess. This implies that the planet ("star") associated with Ephesus was the MOON. The Chaldeans arranged the MOON as the first planet and this is the first church. The Ephesian Era existed from the SUN in Sagittarius ("eyes like a flame of fire ... in his right hand seven stars ... out of his mouth ... two-edged sword" -- Rev. 1:12-17) (96 A.D.) to the MOON in Gemini (two witnesses alternately a "lamp" -- 2:5 or "tree of life" -- 2:7 in Rev. 11:4) (276 A.D.) or 180 degrees. Gemini "left thy first love" since this sign is 180 degrees from Sagittarius and "fallen" since a smaller constellation further from earth. 96 A.D. + 180 = 276 A.D. The persecution under Emperor Aurelian 274-275 A.D. may have diminished this era in the Roman Empire but many Nazarenes dwelt in IRAN (or PERSIA) as a religious minority and Nazarenes were systematically persecuted in Iran in 276 A.D. by Bashram II until their "lampstand" was removed. They should have gone west instead -- 180 degrees opposite from Persia -- toward Sagittarius.
In Acts 2:9 it is mentioned that on "the Day of Pentecost at Jerusalem there were "PARTHIANS, and MEDES, and ELAMITES, and inhabitants of MESOPOTAMIA". Early Christian records mention that Peter and Thomas preached the Gospel to the PARTHIANS and men such as Thaddaeus, Bartholomew, and Addeus, evangelized the races of MESOPOTAMIA and PERSIA, and that Mari, a noble PERSIAN convert, succeeded Addeus in the government of the PERSIAN Christian communities. The bishops, Abrês, Abraham, Jacob, Ahadabuhi, Tomarsa, Shahlufa, and finally Bishop Papa succeeded him at the end of the Third Century. Syriac documents also indicate that towards the beginning of the Third Century the Christians in the PERSIAN territories had some three hundred and sixty churches, and many martyrs.
Arbela, fifty miles east of river Tigris (Dejleh) and the capital of Adiabene—a small PERSIAN border kingdom—was the earliest center of Christianity in IRAN (present day Iraq). There was a large concentration of Jews in Arbela and in Nisibis in eastern MESOPOTAMIA and while some Jews were instrumental in spreading Christianity, others opposed the new faith. The First century Jewish historian Josephus, mentions that a king of Adiabene accepted Judaism about AD 36. Such a conversion made Arbela a natural center for Jewish Christian mission at an early date. Nisibis another major city of the area was also the seat of a Jewish Academy of learning. Christianity spread in both villages and cities and by the end of the PARTHIAN period (AD 225), Christian communities were settled all the way from Edessa, an important missionary center, to Afghanistan. The Chronicles of Arbela report that by this time there were already more than twenty bishops in PERSIA and Christians had already penetrated Arabia and Central Asia.
PARTHIAN Kings were tolerant of other religions and Christianity kept slowly but steadily advancing in various parts of the empire. At the time of the persecution of Christians in Rome, many sought refuge in IRAN and were given protection by the IRANIAN rulers. Though thousands of PERSIANS embraced Christianity, PERSIA remained Zoroastrian with many adhering to the Cult of Mithra. However, there never arose an indigenous PERSIAN Church, worshipping in the PERSIAN language. The PERSIAN Church was of Syrian origin, traditions and tendencies and for about three centuries, regarded Antioch (in Syria -- Acts 11:26) as the center of its faith and the seat of authority.
A period of peace and prosperity for the Christian community lasted until the reign of Bahram II (276-293AD). For the first time in 276 A.D. there is systematic oppression of different religious groups in Iran. In his inscriptions, the 'priest' Kidir (the chief Mobad) states that thanks to his efforts under King Bahram II (276-293), Zoroastrianism was promoted in the empire and other religious communities were persecuted. In one part of the inscription he declares: "The false doctrines of Ahriman and of the idols suffered great blows and lost credibility. The Jews (Yahud), Buddhists (Shaman), Hindus (Brahman), NAZARENES (Nasara), Christians (Kristiyan), Baptists (Makdag) and Manichaeans (Zandik) were smashed in the empire, their idols destroyed, and the habitations of the idols annihilated and turned into abodes and seats of the gods" (Christianity in Iran, A Brief History by Massoume Price). Our Messiah "removed the candlestick out of his place" in PERSIA (Rev. 2:5).
To this end we believe the Roman armies had also been successful against Persia at this time -- helping "remove the Persian candlestick." But then the Roman emperor Carus was struck by a bolt of lightning in 283 and died. Numerianus, his son, was elevated to the imperial purple by the legions. The army, superstitious and fearful of the wrath of the gods after the lightning stroke, insisted that Numerianus abandon the victorious Persian campaign and lead them home. They were so unsettled by the freakish event that they willingly abandoned all prospects of sacking and plundering Persian cities.
Numerianus was well liked by the Roman people and Senate, being an educated and gentle man who was fond of poetry, literature, and oratory. It was these qualities that allowed Numerianus to be controlled by the praetorian prefect who would eventually murder him.
Numerianus was returning with his army from the war with Persia when he was murdered in his litter in 284. Nobody had heard from the emperor for four days, and only investigated when suspicious smells started to emanate from the imperial litter. There, the soldiers found Numerianus murdered and his corpse in a rotting condition, stinking badly after four days in the heat of Mesopotamia. His Praetorian Prefect, Arrius Aper, was accused of his murder when it had been discovered that Numerianus was dead and the army had not been told of the death of their emperor. Aper, whose name means "The Boar", was taken as a prisoner in chains to be tried for the murder. The army soon chose Diocletian, the "Commander of the Domestics" as emperor to replace Numerian. A prophecy had been given to Diocletian in his youth that he would become emperor, but not until he had "Killed the boar", Having killed many wild boars in hunting, and still a soldier but not an emperor, Diocletian had forgotten the prophecy. Soon, however, Aper was found guilty of Numerianus' murder by the army tribunal. Diocletian quickly killed the treacherous assassin and fulfilled the prophecy that he would kill the boar.
A timeline of this Ephesus period would be helpful here:
96-98 Roman emperor Nerva reigns.
98-117 Roman Emperor Trajan reigns.
107-117 Ignatius (bishop of Antioch) is martyred (MERCURY -- 117).
112 Cornelius Tacitus, Pliny the Younger write about Jesus (MARS -- 112).
117-138 Roman emperor Hadrian reigns (MERCURY -- 117).
119 Tertullian writes oldest Christian works in Latin
120 Suetonicus writes about Jesus in Life of Claudius
132-135 Second Jewish revolt (the "Bar Cochba" revolt) against Rome (VENUS -- 132).
136 Second Roman (Hadrian) conquest of Jerusalem.
150 Justin Martyr (100-165) writes First Apology and Dialogue With Trypho defending Christianity as a "philosophy" worthy of the respect of the educated and as the only legitimate heir to the Israelite scriptures. Irenaeus writes Against Heresies
166 First Marcomannic War (166-174) (SATURN -- 166)
Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna and
166? Martyrdom of Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna and younger colleague and admirer of Ignatius of Antioch (SATURN -- 166). Marcus Aurelius persecutes, executes Christians.
185-254 Origen, early church scholar, writes Against Celsus and De Principiis
200 Creation of Hindu scripture Bhagavad Gita.
200-258 Novation caused split in Rome over what to do with Christians who avoided persecution.
220 Jewish Mishnah (commentary on the Bible) completed
224 Sassanids come to power in Persia.
249-251 Persecution of the church by Decius.
251-356 Antony of Egypt, founder of monasticism, becomes the earliest hermit monk.
258 Bishop Cyprian, Catholic theologian, martyred
303 -- Diocletian orders Roman forces to persecute Christians. He orders Christian churches closed throughout the Empire and Scriptures burnt.
313 -- Edict of Milan -- An agreement between Constantine, ruler of the west, and Licinius, ruler of the East, that assures full restitution of all confiscated Christian property and full rights for Christian worship in both halves.
363 Council of Laodicea
407 John Chrysostom dies
428 Nestorius, Patriarch of Constantinople
The Smyrna Era Was Called Ebionite
"And unto the angel of the church in Smyrna write; These things saith the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive; I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan" (Rev. 2:8-9).
The ancient city of Smyrna practically died out for 400 years, and then revived remarkably. A prominent feature of local religion was death and resurrection of the "god" Dionysius. The name "Smyrna" means "MYRRH." Smyrna took its name from the local trade in myrrh. MYRRH was used to embalm DEAD bodies. For instance, Nicodemus brought "MYRRH and aloes" to the body of Jesus (John 19:39-40). Therefore Smyrna was a church of MARTYRS.
Smyrna (lit. "Myrrh" or "Incense" or "Bitter") Christians were called "Ebionites (Hebrew ... "POOR men") a name given to the ultra-Jewish party in the early Christian Church.... they ... rejected Paul as an apostate from the MOSAIC LAW, to the customs and ordinances of which, including CIRCUMCISION, they steadily ADHERED (Irenaeus -- Adv. Haer. 26. 2). They kept both the Jewish SABBATH and the Christian Lord's day, and held extreme MILLENARIAN ideas in which Jerusalem figured as the centre of the coming Messianic kingdom. Epiphanius with his customary confusion makes two separate sects, Ebionites and Nazarenes. Both names, however, refer to the same people (the Jewish Christians of Syria), the latter going back to the designation of apostolic times (Acts xxiv. 5), and the former being the term usually applied to them in the ecclesiastical literature of the 2nd and 3rd centuries. The origin of the Nazarenes or Ebionites as a distinct sect is very obscure, but may be dated with much likelihood from the edict of Hadrian which in 135 finally scattered the old church of Jerusalem. ... His (Jesus') coming did not annul the LAW.... and CIRCUMCISION still necessary. BAPTISM must be REPEATED as a means of PURIFICATION from sin, and proof against disease ... and a good deal of ASTROLOGICAL fancy was inter-woven with the doctrinal and practical teaching ... these (were) Essene Ebionites" (p.842, vol.8, Encyc. Brit. 11th ed.).
What is the "Synagogue of SATAN"? It may refer to false Christians as in Revelation 3:9, but here it more likely refers to "JEWS." Many IDUMIANS were forced to become "JEWS" (Ant. 13:9:1) by Hyrcanus in 125 B.C. "EDOM is in modern Jewry" (Jewish Encyc. 5:41). Josephus indicates that only the Essenes were hereditary Jews while the Pharisees and Saduccees were NOT JEWS by birth (Wars 2:8:2). Jesus said to these Jews, "Ye are of your father the DEVIL" (John 8:44) which agrees with Revelation 2:9 where Jesus says, "I know the blasphemy of them who say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of SATAN." The Pharisees said to Jesus, "We are Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man" (John 8:33). Yet Israel had a long history of bondage in Egypt, Assyria and Babylon. Therefore the Pharisees must have been the other branch of Abraham's seed in Palestine -- EDOMITES.
Polycarp is believed to have been the "angel" or minister of this church at the time John was writing. According to Tertullian, Irenaeus, Eusebius and Jerome, John the apostle himself consecrated Polycarp bishop of Smyrna. The state required Polycarp to worship Caesar as god. Polycarp refused and was burned at the stake on the hillside of Mount Pagus in 168 A.D. Here is a description of the martyrdom of Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna: "the Pro-Consul, respecting his dignity and his advanced age -- for he was more than eighty -- and being desirous to save him, urged him, saying, 'Swear, and I will release thee.' 'Reproach Christ.' Polycarp answered, 'Eighty years have I served Him, and He has never wronged me. How can I blaspheme my King who has saved me?' The Pro-Consul, judging his efforts to be unavailing, sent a herald to proclaim: Polycarp hath professed himself a Christian. At that hated name the multitude, both of the Gentiles and the JEWS, unanimously shouted that he should be burned alive. The people immediately gathered fuel from the workshops and the baths, in which employment the JEWS distinguished themselves with their usual malice" (Eusebius Eccl.Hist. ch. 15, p.147).
Gibbon also tells us that the JEWS tried to instigate the Romans into persecuting Christians (Decline and Fall, ch.16).
"Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death" (Rev. 2:10-11).
How could "the Devil" "cast some of you into prison" (Rev. 2:10) when only the officers of the Roman Empire could throw Christians into prison? Because the Roman Empire is the Devil manifest (Rev. 12:9). God uses the same symbol for both the Roman Empire and Satan. Both are a RED DRAGON.
What are the "ten days" of tribulation (2:10)? From 23 Feb. 303 to 13 June 313 A.D. (Lactantius De Mort. Persec. 48; Eusebius E.H. 8:15-16), after Diocletan returned victorious from the Persian wars, he persecuted Christians. Hundreds of thousands of Christians died or were banished. It was Smyrna's "tribulation for ten days" (years) (2:8-10). DIOCLETIAN published his edict at Nicomedia on February 24, 303 and it lasted until his death. The Edict of Toleration by Galerius, was issued in 311 in Serdica (now Sofia, Bulgaria) by Roman Emperor Galerius. It officially ended Diocletian's persecution of Christianity in the East. Constantine (West) and Licinius (Balkans) agreed to treat Christians kindly in the Edict of Milan which was agreed to on February 313 and the proclamation, made for the East by Licinius in June 313, granted all persons freedom to worship whatever deity they pleased. "In 313 A.D. Constantine's Edict of Milan restored confiscated Christian property and gave equal rights for all religions. In that same year Constantine exempted Christian clergy from civil and military service and their property from taxation" (SDABC). Besides lasting ten years, this was also the tenth persecution suffered under ten different emperors' edicts: Nero (64 A.D.), Domitian (95 A.D.), Trajan (107 A.D.), Hadrian (127 A.D.), Marcus Aurelius (165 A.D.), Septimius Severus (202 A.D.), Maximus (235 A.D.), Decius (249 A.D.), Valerianus (257 A.D.) and Diocletian (303 A.D.). Read about the 10 persecutions by pagan Rome in Fox's Book of Martyrs, pp. 13-31.
"Our faith" is what "overcometh the world" (1 John 5:4). How do we get that faith? "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Rom. 10:17). Bible study therefore gives us faith to overcome the world. Being fully convinced of the truth of the Bible gives a Christian power to "deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and to live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present world" (Tit. 2:12).
The Messiah described himself as, "the first and the last; He that was dead and is alive" when addressing Smyrna. Why? Because the SUN was Tammuz the "only Son" of heaven, alternately dying and rising again. The birth of this SUN-god occurred on the winter solstice, and was eventually adapted to the Birth of Messiah. Another legend of Tammuz was that he was a faithful prophet put to death by a cruel king (cp. Rev. 2:10 & 11:7-11), the character of martyrdom, which was that of Smyrna. The reward was to have the Crown of Life, the aureole of the SUN -- Corona Borealis, the crown of Dionysus, the SUN god. Ever since, in works of art, glorified saints are depicted with halos; but up till then this had been the characteristic of Helios and other SUN gods in eastern and western mythologies. "Round the crest of the hill at the back of the city was a line of fine buildings known as 'the crown' of Smyrna. Christ promised something better. It was also a Smyrnean practice to present a crown to the high priest of Dionysus at the end of his term of office. Several epitaphs include the title 'crownbearer.' But Christ offers a greater honor. The Smyrna Era existed from 303 A.D. to 313 A.D. which was the "tribulation TEN DAYS" (Rev. 2:10) -- Diocletian's persecution TEN YEARS (DEGREES) -- from the MOON forming Sagittarius's "two-edged" sword (303 A.D.) ("death" -- 2:10) to the SUN in Sagittarius (313 A.D.) ("crown of life" -- 2:10) and since there are no gaps in the history of the church from the end of Ephesus to the beginning of Smyrna because "the gates of hades ("the grave") shall not prevail against it" (Matt. 16:18), we know Smyrna must have existed from 276 A.D. at least.
A historical timeline of the Smyrna Era would be helpful:
293 Diocletian divides Roman Empire in two.
303 Severe persecution of the church by Roman emperor Diocletian.
312 Battle of Rome's Milvain Bridge, October 27, leads to succession of Constantine to the throne and conversion to Christianity.
The Pergamos Era Was Called Donatist & Paulician
(313 - 703 A.D.)
"And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges; I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan's seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth" (Rev. 2:12-13).
Pergamos means "height" or "elevation" because the city stood 1000 feet above sea level and was built about 1150 B.C. by the Aeolian Greeks. The elevation provided a natural defense and the city was considered impregnable. Kings sometimes stored their wealth in this city for safekeeping. Lysimachus placed his fortune of $10 million in this city. This city was made the capital of the province of Asia when Attalus III (aka Philometer), the last of the Attalid kings, bequeathed his kingdom to Rome in 133 B.C.
The proconsuls who ruled there were vested with the symbol of authority: the broad, double-edged sword. The Supreme court of the province was also located there. Life or death awaited the prisoners who came to this court. But in the final judgment, Christ "hath the sharp sword with two edges" (Rev. 2:12) and he will pass sentence on everyone (2 Cor. 5:10) based on what they do with what they have in the time they have been given. He takes note of where men were born (Ps. 87:4-6).
By 337 A.D., about half the inhabitants of the Roman Empire professed to be Christians -- many doing so just to keep their positions because Catholicism was now the State Religion. Catholics were no longer thrown to wild beasts in the Colosseum, or burned alive in the Circus of Nero, no longer commanded to offer incense to the gods or worship a serpent. Pergamos means "Married to Power."
The counterfeit Babylonian religion claimed to make a bridge between heaven and earth (Just as the Tower of Babel had a top which reached into the heavens as an observatory to find a natural cause for the flood and how to prevent another one -- despite God's assurance there would not be another one.). The ruling monarch became the head of the system. As High Priest of the old Babylonish religion, he was the original Pontifex Maximus ("the Greatest Bridge-builder"). The king of ancient Babylon had been both king and High Priest, or Pontifex Maximus. When Belshazzar was slain (Dan. 5:30), and the Chaldeans were defeated by Darius the Mede, the Persians gave the inhabitants of the city their freedom. But the Babylonian priests later led a revolt and were expelled from Babylon. Some fled to Tibet where the ancient Babylonian religion is preserved intact. But the most important moved to, and settled their Central College in, Pergamos -- "Satan's seat" (Rev. 2:13). Pergamos was the name of a kingdom as well as of a city. The kingdom was one of the four that developed out of Alexander's Empire, referred to in Dan 8:8,22. We read that 'out of one of them came forth a little horn' (v 9) -- Rome.
"An intellectual city, with a huge library. It gave its name to 'parchment.' Centre of Roman administration for the province and of the state religion (Emperor worship), hence v 13. Centre also of worship of Aesculapius, god of healing -- his symbol a serpent. Temple prostitution was rampant here, more even than at other centres of idolatry.
The most important temple in Pergamos was the Temple of Zeus dedicated to Aesculapius, the serpent child of the "incarnate sun" or the "serpent god" or "the god of healing" or "the man-instructing serpent" who gave man the knowledge of good and evil. A living serpent was always kept in the Temple of Zeus as an object of worship. A famous school of medicine was also located there, the emblem of which was the serpent or the Caduceus twined around a pole which is today the emblem of the medical profession. The city was a great educational center. Its library of 200,000 books rivaled the Egyptian library at Alexandria. When Egypt refused to supply Pergamos with papyrus for manufacturing paper, they prepared a new kind of writing material called "parchment" from carefully treated skins. In German it is called "pergament."
"The defeated Chaldeans fled to Asia Minor and fixed their central college at Pergamos and took the palladium of Babylon, the cubic stone, with them. Here, independent of state control, they carried on the rites of their religion." (William B. Barker, Lares and Penates, pp. 232-233). When one of the kings of Pergamos, named Attalus III, died in 133 B.C., he bequeathed all his dominions to the Roman Empire. Thus Julius Caesar took the title of Pontifex Maximus (Supreme Pontiff) -- the living representative of the Babylonian Sun god -- descendant of the gods. From henceforth he was "divine." The Emperor Gratian was the first "Christian" emperor to refuse the insignia of Pontifex Maximus. It was incongruous, he thought, that a Christian emperor should bear a pagan title. But this title he discarded was soon taken up and conferred on Damasus, the Pope of Rome. The "keys" and the "vestments" came with the title. Notice that Satan's throne has three transfers. Babylon to Pergamos; Pergamos to Pagan Rome; Pagan Rome to Papal Rome, then Christ will return and destroy it. David's throne, the "throne of the Eternal" (1 Chr. 29:23), also has three transfers (Ez. 21:27). Jerusalem to Ireland; Ireland to Scotland; Scotland to England or Great Britain, then Christ will return to sit upon it.
"Antipas" is a Greek contraction for "Antipater" (against Pope) who was a pastor of Pergamos who was martyred in Pergamos by being slowly baked in a brazen (brass) bull that was heated until it was red hot.
These "Paulicians" (also called "Thonraki," "Bogomils," or "Albigenses") believed that "One unleavened loaf and wine are to be offered in the eucharistic sacrifice.... (They) maintained a steady war against IMAGES, MARIOLATRY, and much else that the degenerate Greek world had adopted from Paganism ... We also know ... that the Pauliani, who were the same people who at an earlier date, were Quartodecumans, and kept Easter (sic) in the primitive manner at the JEWISH date. Ananias (early seventh century) (of Shirak says) ... 'But the Pauliani also keep the FEAST of the PASCHA on the same day (as the JEWS), and whatever be the day of the full moon, they call it Kuriake, as the JEWS call it SABBATH, even though it be not a (weekly) SABBATH.'... They are accused by their Armenian opponents of setting at naught all the feasts and fasts of the (established) Church, especially Sunday. They kept the Festival of a Birth of Christ ... 'The same St. Gregory (of Narek),' continues Sahak, 'appointed SABBATHS, and fasts, and abstinences in fulfillment of vows.' ... the Paulicians observed the SABBATH and not the Sunday ... for they were probably the remnant of an old JUDAEO-CHRISTIAN Church, which had spread up through Edessa into Siuniq and Albania.... The early Armenian Christians ... spoke of REST-HOUSES, SYNAGOGUES, of proseuchae, and of shrines ... but hardly at all of churches; and individuals, especially if they were elders, were prone ... to celebrate the Agape and Eucharist in their own houses ... as well as collect in them the firstfruits of the offerings. Sahak insists that these rites must be performed in church ... and the firstfruits are to be taken to the house of the head-priest ... We know that the Pauliani continued to keep the PASSOVER on the FOURTEENTH of Nisan with the JEWS." (The Key of Truth trans. by Fred C. Conybeare pp.38,49,104,152,162). Polycarp followed John in keeping Passover on the 14th (Eusebius E.H. 5:24). Polycrates followed Polycarp (Ante-Nicene Fathers 8:773-774) and now the Paulicians followed Polycrates.
From Eusebius' Life of Constantine, book 3:66, we read about the demise of church worship: "To speak of your criminality as it deserves demands more time and leisure than I can give.... Why not at once strike, as it were, at the root of so great a mischief by a public manifestation of displeasure? Forasmuch, then, as it is no longer possible to bear with your pernicious errors (of SABBATH-KEEPING -- author), we give warning by this present statute that none of you henceforth presume to assemble yourselves together. We have directed, accordingly, that you be DEPRIVED of all the HOUSES in which you are accustomed to hold your ASSEMBLIES; and forbid the holding of your superstitious and senseless MEETINGS (meaning attending church on SATURDAY-- author), not in public merely, but in any private HOUSE or PLACE whatsoever.... We have commanded... that you be positively DEPRIVED of every GATHERING POINT for your superstitious MEETINGS, I mean all the HOUSES of prayer.... that any other PLACES be CONFISCATED to the public service, and NO FACILITY whatever be left for any future gathering (on God's SABBATH) in order that from this day forward none of your unlawful ASSEMBLIES may presume to appear in any public or private PLACE." This was a statute at the Council of Nicaea (325 A.D.)
Thus began the 1260-year tribulation by Catholicism (Rev.12:6,14). In 1585 Sir Walter Raleigh explored Roanoke Virginia as a favorable location for an English colony of Protestants. In 1586-1587 (1260 + 325 = 1585), Mary Queen of Scots was convicted and executed for conspiracy. In 1588 the Catholic Spanish Armada was wrecked by a great storm at sea. Thus ended the 1260 years in the wilderness mentioned in Revelation 12:6,14.
But meanwhile Athanasius, A.D. 340 said, "We assemble on SATURDAY, not that we are infected with Judaism, but only to worship Christ, the Lord of the SABBATH." Yes, "The primitive Christians DID KEEP the SABBATH of the Jews; ... therefore the Christians, for a long time together, DID KEEP their conventions upon the SABBATH, in which some portions of the law were read; and this CONTINUED TILL the time of the LAODICEAN COUNCIL (364 A.D.)." (The Whole Work Of Jeremy Taylor, vol.9, p.416). The 29th canon of the Laodicean Council held in 364 A.D. said, "Christians must not JUDAIZE by resting on the SABBATH, but must work on that day, rather, honouring the Lord's Day; and, if they can, resting then as Christians. But if any shall be found to be JUDAIZERS, let them be anathema from Christ." (Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, vol.14, p.148) The "little horn" Papacy "will think to change the times and the laws" (Dan. 7:25), the time for the Sabbath law from Saturday to Sunday. (364 + 1260 = 1624) In 1623 A.D. the Dutch West India Company sent a vessel to America with 30 families of Walloons (Protestant refugees from S. Netherlands) to the mouth of the Hudson River so they could settle on Manhattan Island. Exactly 1260 years later in 1624 A.D. Albany was established by the Protestant Dutch as a fur-trading settlement. The Pilgrim Separatists also settled New Hampshire and Maine in 1623-24 A.D.
Meanwhile, a bishop of Constantinople named Nestorius protested against the virgin Mary being called "Mother of God." So the Emperor called the Council of Ephesus in 431 A.D. to settle this dispute. Nestorius was banished and deposed. The phrase "Mother of God" was formally accepted in 431 A.D. at Ephesus. If we add 1260 years (Rev. 12:6,14), we arrive at 1691 A.D. when Catholics were punished by William, Prince of Orange. The "Holy Hill" towering above Ephesus had been dedicated to the "mother of God" more than a thousand years before Christ. How was this possible? Semiramis taught that when Nimrod her husband died, he was reincarnated as her son, so that she was his wife and mother. Statues of her with an infant in her arms were very popular in Babylon. She was known by different names in different lands. Astarte, Beltis, Cybele, Aphrodite, Isis, Artemis. But in Ephesus she was called Diana -- where the ruins of the Temple of Diana can still be seen. Diana of Ephesus was worshipped by immoral orgiastic fertility rites. The Temple of Diana was built in 480 B.C. of red, blue, yellow and white marble. Gold was used for mortar.
"But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication" (Rev. 2:14).
What was the "DOCTRINE of Balaam"? Balaam was the son of Beor (Num. 22:5). Beor was Edomite (Gen. 36:31-32; 1 Chr. 1:43). Balak built seven altars for sacrifice to seven planets (Num. 23:1-25). They imagined the seven days of the week to be under the respective influences of the seven luminaries (Herod. 2:82; Dio Cassius Can. Chron. p. 448). Balaam was willing to curse Israel (Num. 22:15-17; Deut. 23:4) "for REWARD" (Jude 11). Balaam was a soothsayer (Joshua 13:22) who had "an heart exercised with COVETOUS practices, which have forsaken the right way ... who loved the WAGES of UNRIGHTEOUSNESS" (2 Pet. 2:15). In other words, these Christians were willing to compromise to earn more money. Religious mixture with idols and ritual fornication (Hos 9:10) with the daughters of Moab (mingling the "holy seed" -- Ezra 9:1-2). Eli's sons lost the priesthood in this way (1 Sam. 2:22; 3:13). In ancient Pergamos (where Satan's seat was) there were Christians called Ophites who made an alliance with the serpent worshippers there. But more importantly, Christians have participated in false Papal Roman ("where Satan's seat is") religious customs such as Easter and X-mass (fornication -- Ps.106:28). "They joined themselves also unto Baal-peor, and ate the sacrifices of the dead" (Ps. 106:28) which is where the custom of eating ginger-bread men at X-mass time originated.
Furthermore, orgiastic feasting was a normal part of the 'civilization' of the Roman Empire in NT times. Temple 'virgins' were recruited in hundreds. Temple prostitution was respectable. Public banquets and special celebrations such as birthdays were commonly arranged in the pagan temples, so that each course of the meal was a kind of votive offering to the god. These facts explain the tremendous emphasis in the NT against fornication and eating food offered to idols -- the two outstanding features of the Baal-Peor transgression (Acts 15:20; 1Co 6:12-20; 10:14-33; all of 1Co 8; Col 3:5 -- this word 'covetousness' is used several times in the NT for coveting a woman; 1Pe 4:3,4; 2Pe 2.; 1Jo 5:21). Rev 14:4 refers to temple prostitution. In Corinth; 'meats for the belly and the belly for meats' (1 Cor. 6:13) was the slogan used to justify ritual fornication. Compare Rom. 6:1,15; 3:8; 1Jo 3:3,7 and Jude 4, which show that the argument sometimes took the form: 'Since we have forgiveness (grace) through the blood of Christ, the more we sin the more sin will be forgiven, and thus the more God will be magnified!'
"So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate" (Rev. 2:15).
The "deeds" on the part of a few Nicolaitans in Ephesus (Rev. 2:6) had become a "doctrine" within the church of Pergamos (2:15). The leaven of apostasy works quickly. Pergamos fulfilled the "falling away" at the time the antichrist was revealed (2 Th. 2:3-7).
The Paulicians were "spread over Asia Minor and Armenia from the 5th century onwards.... (They were founded by Constantine of Mananali who) "based his teaching on the Gospels and the Epistles of Paul, repudiating other scriptures (Actually "it is more probable that they did not possess" other portions of the Bible -- Miller's Church History) ... (Paulicians) rejected the Eucharistic rites and doctrine of the Greeks.... we reckon the CROSS and the CHURCH and the priestly ROBES and the sacrifice of MASS for NOTHING ... They assailed the CROSS, saying that ... we ought not to worship the tree, because it is a cursed instrument.... they SMASHED up CROSSES when they could.... (The Key of Truth) warns us that all the apostles constitute the Church universal and not Peter alone; and in the rite of election, i.e. of laying on of hands and reception of the Spirit ... The MONKISH GARB was revealed by Satan ... The same hatred of MONKERY characterized the Thonraki and inspires the Key of Truth.... They called their meetings the Catholic Church, and the places they met in places of prayer ... The Thonraki equally denied the name church to buildings of wood or stone, and called themselves the Catholic Church (Universal Church, not Roman Catholics).... BAPTISMAL WATER of the Church was mere 'BATH-WATER,' i.e. they denied it the character of a reserved sacrament. But there is no evidence that they eschewed water baptism. The modern Thonraki baptize in rivers ... They PERMITTED EXTERNAL CONFORMITY with the dominant church, and held that Christ would forgive it ("doctrine of the Nicolaitans" -- comment mine). The same trait is reported of the Thonraki ... They rejected the ORDERS of the Church, and had only two grades of clergy, namely associate itinerants ... (Acts xix. 29) and copyists ... (who) dressed like other people; the Thonraki also SCORNED PRIESTLY VESTMENTS.... Jesus ... limiting true kinship with himself to those who shall DO THE WILL OF GOD.... They were thus identified with the old party of the Pauliani, condemned at the first council of Nice in 325.... Paulicians rejected the fetish worship of a material CROSS ... God is a spirit, and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.... the Thonraki adhere to ADULT BAPTISM" (Encyc. Brit. 20:959-961).
"Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth" (Rev. 2:16).
Yes, martyrs "were counted by hundreds of thousands ... whose slayers invariably took their orders from the persecuting clergy of old and new Rome.... its members were deported by hundreds of thousands to Thrace. There they throve for centuries, and the spread of their tenets into Bohemia (Czechoslovakia), Poland, Germany, Italy, France" (p.104, Key of Truth). In 679 A.D. Pope Agathon persecuted the Paulicians. Finally in 703 A.D. Armenian Christian nobles or nakharars were massacred in Nakhichevan Cappadocia by Moslems (CRESCENT in Capricorn). Notice that two-edged sword CRESCENTS are shot at fall-winter constellations while open-door FULL MOONS are provided to spring-summer constellations).
"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it" (Rev. 2:17).
"A custom was of old and still remains,
Which life or death by suffrages ordains:
White stones and black within an urn are cast;
The first absolve, but fate is on the last." (Ovid Metam. 15:41)
The pot of "hidden MANNA" (Heb. 9:3-4) (crescent) which Aaron put in the Ark of Testimony (Ex. 16:33-34) in the Holy of Holies which nobody could enter but the High Priest symbolizes Jesus -- "the BREAD of LIFE" that came down from heaven (John 6:35) and is hidden in heaven. "Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart" (Jer. 15:16). The other manna corrupted, but the hidden manna ("round" & "white" -- Ex. 16:14,31) did not, and so becomes a symbol of eternal life in Christ. As this manna was brought forth on Yom Kippur, so fullness of eternal life will be bestowed in the Day when sin is done away, when the High Priest Jesus returns from the Divine Presence to bless the people in the name of the Lord (Heb 9:28; cp Col 3:3, Rev 11:19). The lid of the BLACK pot is ajar forming a WHITE crescent. Also in ancient courts of Justice a prisoner's fate was determined by WHITE and black STONES. When there was a majority of WHITE STONES thrown into an urn, the prisoner was ACQUITTED. Black stones condemned -- hence the expression "black-balled." When a questioner asked God a yes-or-no question, he came before the High Priest who would reach into his breastplate pouch and draw lots by pulling out the Urim or Thummin -- perhaps a WHITE or black pebble. A WHITE STONE was also the symbol of victory in the Grecian games. Also, when slaves were freed, they were given WHITE STONES, called Tessera, on which their new names were inscribed. They were badges of friendship and entitled the holders to special privileges. If a gladiator won fifteen victories in combat, he was given a WHITE STONE, symbol of freedom and honor. "If the Son therefore shall make you free, you shall be free indeed" (John 8:36). Overcomers will possess this new name (Isa. 62:2). In 29 A.D. the Roman Senate decided to show its appreciation of one of the founders of the new Empire so the Emperor Augustus was given the name Augustus (meaning sacred or divine). All emperors after him were called Augusti. Jesus gave his leading apostles NEW NAMES (Peter -- Cephas; James and John -- Boanerges; Saul -- Paul) and will make them divine. Zion/Jerusalem receives a new name in Isa 62:2,4: "Hephzibah", "my delight is in her". The new name of Isa 65:15,16 is "Amen" (cp Rev 3:14) or "the Truth." The WHITE STONE is the FULL MOON.
Pergamos worshipped Asklepios, the Merodach of the Babylonians, the ruler of the planet JUPITER. When the Messiah identifies himself as "He that hath the sharp sword with two edges," this indicates the altar of JUPITER that bore a two-edged sword on a Chaldean planisphere of the twelfth century B.C. in the British Museum. One passage speaks of JUPITER as "like the blade of a double sword" (Prof. Sayce, Astronomy and Astrology of Babylonians, p.193). The promise of a "white stone" refers to the full moon in Gemini. The Pergamos Era existed from the SUN in Sagittarius (313 A.D.) ("eyes like a flame of fire ... in his right hand seven stars ... out of his mouth ... two-edged sword" -- Rev.1:12-17) to Capricorn's CRESCENT (+30 = 343 A.D.) ("Satan's seat" -- 2:13) and back to Capricorn's CRESCENT (+ 360 = 703 A.D.) again ("where Satan dwelleth" -- 2:13) since the phrase is mentioned TWICE.
Part of the true church migrated to North Africa. We have evidence of this in both the writings of Origen (3rd century) and Augustine (5th century) who mention Sabbath-keeping churches there. But in 670, 'Uqbah ibn Nafi' invaded Tunisia with an Arab army and founded the garrison city of al-Qayrawan, which became the main centre of Islam in the Maghreb. From Tunisia he gradually extended Arab rule over the whole Maghreb. In 683 'Uqbah' undertook an expedition into southern Morocco but on his return he was defeated and killed by a Berber tribal chief named Kusayla. For 15 years the Christian Berbers under Kusayla and later under a woman leader, Kahinah, held out against the troops of the Umayyad Caliphate. Musa ibn-Nusayr finally used Berber tribes converted to Islam to help him subdue all of North Africa between 703 and 711. He encouraged Berbers to join his army with promises of rich rewards in plunder. By 703 A.D. the largely Berber population switched en-mass from being Christian Donatists to being Moslems (CRESCENT in Capricorn) and even helped with the invasion of Spain and France. Berbers formed the nucleus of the Muslim forces which under their general Tarik subjugated all the Maghreb and started the conquest of Spain in 711. By 703 A.D.the Byzantine North African territories of Algeria and Tunisia (as well as Morocco) fell to the Islamic Empire and many Christians fled to Spain. When Musa Ibn Nouasser arrived in 703, the Berbers were not unwilling to participate in the Islamic expansion into Southern Spain and southern Morocco. However, the progress of Islam remained patchy and small enclaves of Christians still existed in the interior though many fled to Spain.
A timeline of the Pergamos Era would be helpful:
312 Battle of Rome's Milvain Bridge, October 27, leads to succession of Constantine to the throne and conversion to Christianity.
313 Constantine's Edict of Milan ends Roman persecution with toleration of Christians.
Flavius Theodosius (January 11, 347-January 17, 395) after reunited East and west fractions of the Roman empire as the last emperor of all Rome, declared Christianity the official state religion of the Roman Empire.
325 Nicea Council issues Nicean Creed adopted 381
330 Amoun and Macarius found monasteries in the Egyptian desert. Hilarion organizes a monastery at Gaza in Palestine. Mar Augin founds a monastery in Syria near Nisibis. (MARS -- 329)
330 Constantine (280-337) establishes Roman capital in Byzantium (modern Istanbul, Turkey) (MARS -- 329)
335 Queen Helena builds Church of the Holy Sepulcher (MERCURY -- 334)
336 Catholic Council of Laodicea shifts services (Mark 7:7-9,13) to Sunday from Saturday (Ezekiel 8:14-16)
350 The missionary Ninian establishes the church Candida Casa at Whithorn in Galloway Scotland (VENUS -- 349)
358/359 Patriarch Hillel II implements modern Jewish Calendar (with disagreement about proper years for intercalation and initial epoch).
363 Council of Laodicea declares Sabbath-keepers anathema
378 Goths (Germanic tribes) defeat Romans in Adrianople, Turkey
391-2 Pagan worship (including the Olympics) outlawed throughout Roman empire.
395 The will of Theodosius I officially splits Roman Empire into Eastern and Western legs.
397 Council of Carthage defines Canon of 27 NT books; Jerusalem Talmud
382-405 Jerome completes Latin Vulgate (common) Bible in Jerusalem (SATURN -- 383)
382 The Church institutes the death penalty for heresy (SATURN --383)
383 Magnus Maximus, Emperor of the West until 388, conqueres Spain and Gaul. (SATURN -- 383)
407 John Chrysostom dies on forced march.
410 Rome sacked by Visigoths from the North
428 Nestorius appointed patriarch of Constantinople. He condemns "Mother of God" and preaches Jesus was human and divine.
431 Council of Ephesus rejects Nestorians and declares Mary "Mother of God."
476 Fall of last Roman Emperor; Roman monk Dionysius establishes Before Christ/Anno Domini calendar
476 Romulus Augustulus, the last Roman emperor, is overthrown
533 Anathemas of the 2nd Council of Constantinople
533 Roman Emperor Justian retakes northern Africa.
539 War between Persians and Byzantines
540-604 Gregory the Great, a monk, is P-pe.
(480-550) Bendict founds Benedictine monasticism.
552 Justian restores Italy to Roman control.
581 2nd Synod of Macon
587 Visigoths convert to Christianity.
600 Babylonian Talmud codified
605 Augustine is sent by P-pe to be a missionary to Celtic England.
614 Persians massacre Jews in Jerusalem
610-June 7 During his annual monthly retreat within a cave on Mount Hira in Arabia, Mohammed, asked to recite the Qur'an from Jibril (the angel Gabriel). This is remembered during the 9th month each year with day-time fasting during Ramadan.
622 , July 16, Muhammad and his followers start a 200 mile Hijrah (migration) from Mecca to Madina (Saudi Arabia), an event marked as the first day of each Islamic new year.
628 Byzantine Emperor Heraclius recaptures Jerusalem from Persians.
630 Without a battle, Muhammad's 10,000 man army Jihad restores the Ka'bah (first mosque) in Mecca.
632 Recitations written in the Qur'an and hadith (words of the prophet) in the Sunna are written. It contains the Five Pillars of Islam (submission) followed by Muslims (those who submit to Allah's will).
___ Muhammad is helped by the Angel Ji'bril to fly at night to Bethlehem and Jerusalem on the winged mule/donkey Bu'raq. He returns to Mecca after meeting with Jesus and other prophets. Along the way, he also sees Iblis, the Devil Satan. These events are celebrated on Isra'
632 Muhammad dies in Mecca, and ascends to Mi'raj (heaven) from the temple mount. His father-in-law, Abu Bakr, is elected by Sunni tribal leaders as the Rightly-Guided caliph (successor).
634 Abu Bakr dies after appointing Umar I caliph, who conquers Jerusalem, Byzantine Damascus, and Syria.
636 Arabs under Kalid ib-al Walid defeat Byzantines in desert sandstorm at Yarmul (now Israel).
644 On his deathbed, Umar names a council which chose Uthman the next caliph, who conquers Persia (Iran).
646 Christian Alexandria recaptured by Muslim Arabs
656 Ali (cousin/son-in-law to Mohammed) named first Iman by Shiites (party of Ali) in Iraq.
657 Al Aksa Mosque construction begins in Jerusalem. “Abomination of Desolation" is placed in the Holy Place.
661 Muawiya takes over as a Sunni caliph after Ali is murdered, beginning the Ummayad dynasty till 750, which advanced into Africa. (JUPITER -- 662)
665 Muslims conquer Arabs in the Battle of Basra.
664 Synod of Whitby - Roman Church authority (based on lineage from St. Peter) chosen over Ionian Celtic traditions (for Easter) by Northumbrian King Oswy.
688-691 Dome of the Rock built in Jerusalem's Temple Mount by caliph Abd al-Malik (9th Caliphate 685-705), who also mints purely Muslim coins and declares Arabic the official language. (MARS -- 689)
694 Visigothic King Egica orders all Jews enslaved (MERCURY -- 694)
700 Masorites divide Tanache (Old Testament) into chapters
711-715 Muslims Conquor Spain