This week marks the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The fall came as a result of Pope John Paul's efforts to use America to help destroy communisim. In the wake of the Warsaw Pact, Europe was united and is becoming an Empire once again - and is now heading toward the climax when it will "make war with the Lamb".
Welcome to another edition of the Bible in the News. This is Jonathan Bowen joining you from Brantford in Canada.
The history of Europe is one of great turmoil. From the reign of Charlemagne and for almost 1,000 years central Europe was united under the Holy Roman Empire. This wicked empire was responsible for the murder of God’s saints at the bidding of the Catholic Church. It is described in Daniel 7 as “speaking great words against the most High and shall wear out the saints of the most High.” Revelation 13 describes the Beast of the Earth, which was the Apocalyptic symbol of the Holy Roman Empire, causing “as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed” (Rev 13:15). The litany of murder is placed at the feet of the Catholic Church in Revelation 18:24 where it states, “in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.”
The Iron Curtain Descends
As judgment for her crimes against God’s saints, Europe had been dismembered by the French Revolution, torn apart by the First World War and decimated by the Second World War – under what are described as the vials of Revelation, recorded in Chapter 16. The Holy Roman Empire was ended and Europe stood divided between East and West in what became to be known as the Cold War – with a physical line running across Berlin.
For those who grew up during this time, the picture was frightening and bleak. Imminent invasion by the Soviets, the threat of nuclear war and the annihilation of the planet in a nuclear holocaust gripped many.
However, this picture had to change in accordance with the prophetic Word. The book of Revelation describes a Europe revived from the ashes of the Holy Roman Empire and united by the consent of its leaders:
And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition. And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. (Revelation 17:11-13)
The beast that was, (the Holy Roman Empire), and is not (destroyed by Napoleon following the French Revolution), even he is the eighth (revived). This system is described in verse 8 as “The beast that thou sawest, was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit….” It would come back to life and the little nations that made it up, described as 10 kings, would voluntarily give their power and strength to this beast.
The Papal Pick Axe Chopping At the Wall
The image painted did not match that of the Cold War in the 1950’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Yet, Daniel 4:17 stated, “the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men.” The decree of scripture was clear, the working out was not, until 20 years ago this week when the Berlin Wall fell or was pulled down by Europeans, the symbol of “the great iron curtain” that descended across Europe at the close of the Second World War.
This week celebrations were held in Berlin and attended by foreign dignitaries – commemorating this momentous event.
One picked up in the commemorative commentary this week a somewhat under reported theme… that of the Pope’s contribution to this momentus event. Cardinal Angelo Sodano, dean of the College of Cardinals, as reported by the Catholic News Agency from
“the historical event was possible “thanks to Pope John Paul II and the contributions of many Christians” on the continent…
The article went on to state:
“It is just to recall November 9, 1989. A symbol of a divided Europe fell then, and most importantly, the Communist system that was imposed by force on the nations of central-eastern Europe began to fall,” the cardinal said.
As John Paul II said during a 1996 visit to Berlin, the fall of the wall was “the triumph of the freedom of peoples.”
“I was with the Pope then, and I remember the excitement of Chancellor Kohl and all those present who gave him a standing ovation, almost to thank him for his contribution to the returning of freedom to the heart of Europe,” Cardinal Sodano said.
The Popes contribution, recorded in the book The President, the Pope, and the Prime Minister, by John O’Sullivan, began with the Solidarity Movement in Poland. Before becoming pope, Cardinal Karol Wojtyla had been very active in Poland. In fact, when he left for Rome, Edward Gierek, the Polish Communist leader incorrectly stated in 1980:
“It is good that Wojtyla has left for Rome. Here, in Poland, he would be a disaster. He would create difficulties for us. In Rome, he is less dangerous….” (p93).
O’Sullivan goes on to relate:
Immediately after his election, when the cardinals were paying him homage, he had embraced the elderly Cardinal Frantisek Tomasek of Praugue, saying, “We are standing very close to one another and will stand closer still because now the responsibility for you is being transferred to me.” In his visit to Assisi only one month into his papacy, John Paul declared of the Church behind the Iron Curtain, “It is not a church of silence any more because it speaks with my voice.”
Pope John Paul would return to Poland in a second visit 1983. O’Sullivan relates:
“On Saturday, June 2, , an even more enthusiastic crowd waited to greet John Paul when he walked down the stairway from his Alitalia jet at Warsaw airport, kissed the ground of his native Poland, and – watched by the entire world, including Ronald Regan in California – began shaking the foundations of the Soviet empire.
The Pope put his full support, with the aid of Ronald Regan, America’s President, and the CIA, behind the Solidarity movement in Poland, lead by Polish dock worker and devout Catholic, Lech Walesa.
What followed was the rusting out of the iron in the Soviet Iron Curtain. This is described in Ezekiel 38:4 as the “turning back” of Gog, described in Daniel 11 as the King of the North.
By 1987, O’Sullivan relates,
“Regan had already won the Cold War. The Soviets could no longer meet U.S. economic and strategic competition. They therefore had to meet Regan’s terms.” (p289).
The Pope made a third visit to Poland in 1987 encouraging the Solidarity movement. By April, 1988, the Solidarity strikes began throughout Poland. By January, 1989, Solidarity was recognized as an independent labour union. By July the Polish parliament was dominated by the Solidarity party and Poland’s communist government collapsed. O’Sullivan further relates:
“Maazowiecki took office at the head of Poland’s first postwar democractic government on September 12, 1989 – exactly ten years and three months after John Paul II had landed in Poland and appealed to God, “Let Your Spirit come down and renew the face of the land – this land.”
Two months later, the Berlin Wall would come crashing down, and Communism in Eastern Europe would collapse with it. Russia would be “turned back”. It the words of Margaret Thatcher, Britain’s Prime Minister, commenting on Regan:
“his policies of military and economic competition with the soviet Union forced the soviet leaders, in particular Mr. Gorbechev, to abandon their ambitions of hegemony and to embark on the process of reform which in the end brought the entire communist system crashing down.” (The President, The Pope and the Prime Minister, p301)
Truly, in this regard, Britain and America joined forces with the Papacy and in the words of Revelation 17:2:
“With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.”
Destroying Communism and Uniting Europe
The goal of the Papacy was not the freedom of the peoples of Europe, but the reunification of Europe into a new totalitarian regime. The fall of the Berlin Wall, Communism and the Iron Curtain paved the way for the resurrection of the Beast that “was, and is not, and yet is” (Rev 18:8). The reunification of Germany that followed would lead to the Unification of Europe, as the nations of Eastern Europe joined the European Union.
This reunification has been brought to a climax with the signing of the Lisbon treaty which has just been ratified by Ireland, Poland and finally Czechoslovakia.
Revelation 17:12-13 puts a time table to the beast that “shall ascend out of the bottomless pit”:
“And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.”
Prophetically speaking this is a period of 30 years. The Lisbon Treaty moves us closer to the commencement of this period. Before the climax, when the nations of Europe make “war with the lamb”, the resurrection and judgment of the saints has to occur, the Elijah mission to Israel must take place, the gathering of the nations to Armageddon must happen, the march of the Rainbowel Angel culminating in the arrival of Christ with his saints in Jerusalem, following the “great day of God Almighty” must have taken place. The establishment of the kingdom in Israel and the great decree to “fear God and give glory to him for the hour of his judgment is come” (Rev 14:8) must go out. Simply put, the Lord is at the door! Let us watch and be sober – awaiting his return. Continue to watch with us at the www.bibleinthenews.com.