The End of All Things
And There Was War In Heaven
“And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels...” Revelation 12:7.
Before we delve into the War in Heaven, we will refresh our thought with some interesting points from our two previous studies, especially in reference to what Jesus said in Matthew 24 concerning “the end of the world.” Hopefully, it was made clear that what He foretold came to pass in 70 A.D.. We know, of course, the black and white truth of that chapter is greatly opposed by some. With their attention focused on this era as being when that prophecy is to be fulfilled, it is not easy for them to see that Jesus was speaking of the end of Jerusalem. However, the Jewish leaders knew something was amiss and their kingdom was at stake. From observing the miracles Jesus did, according to Nicodemus, it was clear to them He was sent from God, and anyone sent from God posed a grave threat to every dead and crooked thing for which they stood: “Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him” John 3:2.
They surely saw that He could possibly be the beginning of the end of everything they embraced as being holy. Of course, it was hidden from them to what extent and how it would take place. Notwithstanding, He was a thorn in their side, and they did everything in their devilish power to stop Him, and eventually, they did — so it seemed! It truly appeared as though they had succeeded when their plans were carried out and they unjustly killed Him. However, had they known what lay ahead, they would have done everything in their power to shield him from death; for His death not only sealed their end, it meant the salvation for all mankind. His death released Him to finish what He was sent to do on the other side of the veil, both, to manifestly bring an End to the old and the Beginning to the New.
They thought by *killing their Master's Son, their world would never end; but as Jesus forewarned, that generation lived to see it pass away. He not only put the axe to the base of their glorious tree of knowledge of good and evil; he pulled it out by the roots. Their unbending rule, their rituals and sacrifices (the very center of the Jews' life) passed away with a great noise. The elements of their structure melted with fervent heat, along with all their works, 2 Peter 3:10.
*(“Having yet therefore one son, his wellbeloved, he sent him also last unto them, saying, They will reverence my son. 7But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours. 8And they took him, and killed him, and cast him out of the vineyard. 9What shall therefore the lord of the vineyard do? he will come and destroy the husbandmen, and will give the vineyard unto others. 10And have ye not read this scripture; The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner: 11This was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes?” Mark 12:6 -11.)
There was no kingdom in the world with such pomp and pride, and Jesus ended it once and for all. He was literally the end of a world that caused all the tribes of the earth (the twelve tribes of Israel) to moan (Matt. 24:30). And please remember, He was not speaking of all the ethnic groups and nations of the world, not by any means. There are other scriptures that deal with the rest of the world, such as the ones that speak of the gentiles, the heathen, the inhabitants of the world, and the nations, but not so with Matthew 24. That chapter is specific to the twelve tribes of Israel, and no others. The word, tribe or tribes is never used in the Bible except when speaking of Israel. So let us not make it otherwise.
It would also be beneficial to note that when the word, earth, is used in the scriptures, it is not in reference to the entire planet. It is translated hundreds of times from the Hebrew, erets, and always speaks of a country or a specific piece of land, such as, “...the land (erets) of Israel, 1 Samuel 13:19, and get thee out of thy country (erets), Genesis 12:1. It is the same with world. It does not mean the planet we call Earth. World is translated most often from aion, which means an age. Sometimes it comes from the Greek word, kosmos, and kosmos means an orderly arrangement, a decoration, such as a nation or a religious system.
“The End of the World” has captivated people’s minds for a thousand years or more, and hopefully a small amount of light from these few words will reveal what the scriptures clearly say about it. The phrase itself is used only five times in the New Testament. And to render that phrase from the Greek is enlightening, especially when reading it in the context of the verse: The word, end, in all five verses comes from sunteleia, and this form of the word is only used in those five verses. World is translated from aion, which is an age. This is one of those verses where the phrase is found: “For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world (kosmos - orderly arrangement, a decoration): but now once in the end (sunteleia - entire completion, consummation) of the world (aion - age) hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself” Hebrews 9:26.
(The end of the world is used twice in the Old Testament Psa 19:4 & Isa 62;11; but the context is not related to the verses in the New Testament. They speak of the heavens declaring the Glory of God to the end of the world, and the Lord proclaiming to the end of the world the salvation for the daughter of Zion.)
Let us take a moment and see what this verse is in reference to when it speaks of the sin that Jesus put away by His sacrifice. Sin, as most Bible students know, means to miss the mark. Being aware of this, and knowing what the writer of Hebrews was saying, namely, that men of the old world, the old order of the law, had missed the mark. The very existence of the Law set the stage for them to be in a continual act of sin. Without the Spirit of resurrection, the best they could do was to go through the motions of righteousness; but it was impossible for them to hit that coveted mark. Therefore, Jesus laid down His life to end that kosmos, that world, that age wherein sin abounded. He appeared to put away that sin by the sacrifice of Himself, and not only did He put away the sin of man’s religion, His sacrifice was designed to put away every sin of every nature in every age and in every world! But it had to first begin at the top before it could end at the bottom.
Again, “For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. Hebrews 9:26
Since we are physically present on the earth and breathing natural air, we have no difficulty in believing that when Jesus appeared, everything was not consumed in a ball of fire. We only have to be conscious to know that when He laid down His life as a sacrifice, the world of all the nations and this planet did not come to a complete end. However, almost two thousand years ago, in that age, there was an utter end to that old world. That particular arrangement of natural Israel of that particular age dissolved and passed away with a great noise.
It is easily seen by most that Jesus spiritually brought the age of the law to an end when He said, “It is finished;” but it is not so easily seen by some that it physically ended when Jerusalem and the Temple fell at the hands of Titus. Yet, the works of His death reaches farther greater depths and heights than 70 A.D. It compasses all the ages, past, present, and future; but it is the past and present ages we are presently looking into for now.
Due to being void of His holy Spirit, and the hardness the heart, the Law was written, as it were, upon stone. The Law of course, was holy; but their hearts were not. The Law that lay in the ark of the covenant in the Temple also lay in the heart of Jesus, whose heart was holy. Jesus was the holy manifestation of the Temple and of the Law. As an example, He fulfilled every aspect of both. And when He was killed, His Temple was destroyed, along with the Law that was written upon His Heart. It was the same law that was written in the hearts of stone. (“But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the shoulder, and stopped their ears, that they should not hear. Yea, they made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the law, and the words which the LORD of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets...” Zech 7:11-12). Due to the hardness of their hearts, Israel could not fulfill the Law; but Jesus fulfilled it with righteousness. He and the Law were one and easily entreated. And being one, they could, therefore, be raised together. When He ascended, the Law ascended and became a living law for every heart. And that is where He has written it in us, in the same place it was written in Him — not on tablets of stone but in our hearts! That is why we can fulfill it as He did. It is our nature to do so.
Before leaving that single cross, let us notice the two thieves which were nailed on either side of Him. One thief was good, while one was evil. The tree of good and evil died that day with the Law in their midst. All three — the good, the evil, and Jesus the Holy Law — were smitten together. They were stricken, they were crucified, and they died. It was time for the new Tree to grow in the earth — the Tree of Life with righteous leaves budding from its branches for the healing of the nations. But we did not see much evidence of it until 70 A.D. when God’s righteous hellfire was turned upon the city, the Temple, and the people. That which began on the three crosses was seen coming to fulfillment on that horrifying day. The horror of the crosses was laid out for the entire world to see and to remember throughout the ages. The end of that world was to never be forgotten, and the manifestation of that hill’s death-cry has been heard till this day. Moreover, it will continue to the end of this age. There will be no peace until the law of religion’s spirit, the tree of the good of man, and the evil of man, is stone-cold dead. We can believe otherwise; but the dispensation of this world will march on until the hour arrives for it to end, as it did when Jerusalem’s cup of iniquity was full.
The God of This World
If the god of this world has not blinded us we will have no problem in seeing these things. And please know — there is a god of this world, of this particular age, and he is a master at blinding people. Paul made reference to him in his second letter to the Corinthians: “In whom the god of this world (aion) hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” 2 Corinthians 4:4.
Who do we believe the “god” of this world might be? Some say he is the “antichrist” of whom fictitious books and movies portray, while many others believe he is the devil who temps people to sin in the manner we see daily throughout the world. This carnal sin, they say, is what blinds people to the truth. I can say that people living in such darkness are certainly blind to the truth; for they are dead, and dead people are dead to truth. Dead people cannot see. Paul, however, was not saying that people are blinded when the god of this world tempts them to sin in ways; such as, by boozing, cussing, partying, using drugs, riotous living, and cavorting with wild women or men. He was not talking about “a devil laying wait around every corner” who delights in tempting every soul in some sort of sin and making them adulterers, homosexuals, murderers, child molesters, and rapists. Not by any means! People like this are drawn away by their own compromised, adamic emotions and lusts. These emotions and lusts can stem from childhood abuse that either traumatized or tantalized their young minds; but regardless of the root cause, it is still on the human level. It can even go as far as to open themselves to entertain spirits of demons; yet this is still on the human level of carnal lust.
The apostle was not referring to the god of this world as being what the church system has painted as the devil. The fact is, the devil that the church system promotes doesn’t exist. There is a devil, of course; but that particular devil is foreign to the scriptures. Only in their minds is there such a devil. Paul was talking about a devil that was religious in nature; namely, the religious order of that day — the Jewish priesthood, the scribes, the Pharisees, and the Sadducees. It was that old hierarchy, that subtle, religious system, that polluted priesthood of which he was speaking. He spoke the satan which was always the adversary of God’s elect. Corporately, those adverse/satanic men were the god of that world, that cosmos, that age! As sure as there is a many membered body of Christ — there was a many membered, corporate god, the elohim who ruled Israel, and there is one like it today!
It may bother some when we refer to religious men as being satanic, but more so when we call them gods; however, the men of that religious order who judged the people were not only adverse to the godly prophets, they were called gods in the Old Testament. For instance: “Then his master shall bring him unto the judges (elohim - gods)... Exodus 21:6. It was similar to when Jesus said: “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince (first in rank or power: the priesthood...) of this world (...of this particular order) be cast out (dethroned, impeached, ejected, banished).” John 12:31. And permit me to be among the others to tell you that according to that word — the god of that dispensation, of that world, of that age was cast out. There was war in heaven, and he lost. He lost the war, brethren! The power of that serpentine system was removed! The “beautiful” dragon was cast out of heaven! The priesthood was stripped of its rank and order! That beaten god was cast from that high place of glory! He lost his prestige! His honor was consumed by the flaming firebrands of God’s elect, and so it has been till now, and so shall it ever be! Moreover, the hour will come when the world power we are now at war against will never be again.
Hopefully, it is becoming clear to us that there was a god/elohim of that age, that there was a cunning devil (traducer), a satan (adversary) of that age, and he was destroyed along with the age wherein he ruled with unchecked authority until that time. When that age was dissolved and came to a close, by default, the spirit of that dispensation also came to a close. The priesthood of natural Israel was over.
Since we can grasp this as being true, then let us also understand that there is a cunning satan/devil/god of this present age, and he is no different than the one back then. It is simply the spirit of religion, the spirit that empowers religious people as well as the religious systems of the world! Moreover, on the individual level, if this devil-god has not filled our ears with nonsense, and blinded our minds to truth, I believe we should be able to see that great conflict of 70 A.D. was a portion of the natural fulfillment at Calvary, and more.
The war against Jerusalem was a manifestation of the spiritual war in that heaven. It was a war that was waged against everything that had set itself up as God, and we have the same today. There are the unholy elect of God (the Government, the ACLU, Socialism, Communism, etc.) who are the agents on the ground , and there are the holy ones (the Sons of God) in the heavens. There was war in Jerusalem’s heaven against that great red dragon. The priesthood of old flew through the heavens with great authority. That religious system ruled over the people of that world. It sat in an exalted place, until it was cast from that esteemed courtroom by God and His elect, and so it has been today.
Their day foreshadowed the war that every son of God would face. In similar fashion, there is a whore that sits upon many waters, which are the people and nations of the world, Rev. 17:1, 15, and the sons who are caught up to God and His throne will remove her from her glorious seat of tyranny. We will let the ground forces of today’s Titus do what they will. That is not our concern; but we will do what we are called to do, and we will finish it in victory. That which we are presently engaged is first against that religious spirit within us, and then the one in the heavens that is without. And if we have won the war within, if the devil, that great red dragon, has been destroyed in our own lives, it will also be destroyed in this present world. Once there is no engagement of war against mystery Babylon the Great, the Mother of Harlots and Abominations of the Earth within ourselves, the season will have come that we will be able to destroy that modern day city in the earth where the two witnesses will be killed. “And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.” Revelation 11:8.
From the day of Golgotha this war has continued one way or the other; but it will not last forever. A complete victory will be found with the devil destroyed and Satan’s power removed forever from every life and from every place. It has been God’s call to eventually strip the accuser inwardly and outwardly of his rank and cast him destroyed from his high place of glory to never see that religious system and temple of this age to be built again.
Every age has its serpent that grows to a great red dragon, and these ages have their great wars when God’s elect are caught up to dethrone the dragon with the tail of lying prophets Isaiah 9-15. Therefore, this present world war began after the last great war ended in 70 A.D.. This war in heaven would march down through the centuries. It would not end until the enemy of God’s people was unseated from its powerful place with its pride and prestige turned to shame and utter defeat. From that day in 70 A.D. until now, war has been shaking the heavens, and we find ourselves in the midst of it everyday. It has been between us and the great red (purrhos - fiery, fire produces light) dragon of Revelation 12. (dragon: “a fabulous kind of serpent, perhaps as supposed to fascinate” --Strong’s.
This is who has been against us and we against him. It has been no mystery that we have been warring against Satan, that ancient serpent, the adversary, the devil, the traducer of God’s truth, that religious spirit which rules over individuals’ spiritual lives, and especially the church system.
Most of us know the battles are no longer against an imaginary devil that is tempting our flesh. There is an area where the devil moves and has his being, and that is in the world of pseudo religion, and we are not tempted by any means to join again the ranks of the modern religious systems of the world. There is no desire to be joined to such a harlot, and we can’t be tempted by her seductive spirit; for that war has already been won. For the most part, our war is against the red dragon, the religious angel of light between our ears! We have been engaged in this war in our heavens for a long time. However, some have gained victory, some are continuing to battle until it is secured for them, while some are prisoners of war who have surrendered to the alluring call of the harlot. An ample amount about her is found not only in the book of Revelation but also in the Proverbs:
“For the lips of a strange woman drop as an honeycomb, and her mouth is smoother than oil: 4But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a twoedged sword. 5Her feet go down to death; her steps take hold on hell. 6Lest thou shouldest ponder the path of life, her ways are moveable, that thou canst not know them. 7Hear me now therefore, O ye children, and depart not from the words of my mouth. 8Remove thy way far from her, and come not nigh the door of her house: 9Lest thou give thine honour unto others, and thy years unto the cruel” Proverbs 5:3 -9. (See also Prov. 2:16-20, 5:20, 6:24-27, 23:27-28).
When arrayed in such tempting beauty and with words dripping like honey from its comb, it is sometimes hard to see the truth of who or what Satan is. He is truly such a master of deception, especially since he is so appealing to the carnal eye. However, when his identity is known, his reign ends, it goes up in smoke, and he is destroyed,.
On the other hand, if that traducing devil, the god of this world, the religious spirit and system of this age has blinded our minds — slavery will be the order of the day. It will flourish while God’s Kingdom diminishes. However, we know better! There are three hundred who have gone the distance, and seven thousand more we don’t know about. They have been tried and proven. They will rise at the beginning of the middle watch, at the darkest hour of the night, and the light from their broken lamps will pierce the darkness, while the word of their trumpets sounds the victory that is already sealed. The host of the Midianites, the servants of Baalim and of the groves, will be cast from the heavens of God’s great throne! Satan, the adversary, the dragon with his lying prophets will be cast down! Brethren, man’s religious days are numbered! The god of this world has met his match!
To be continued...
Elwin R. Roach
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