Yesterday I spoke briefly about a mystery concealed within the Winter One-der-land of Chanukah that speaks about people cleansing themselves (their temples) from the mystery of iniquity during the season of the Winter Solstice, so they can dedicate themselves anew to God’s holy plans and purposes. Let’s take a deeper look at this beast called the Mystery of Iniquity. I am purposely using the term “beast”:
“Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for the number is that of a man; and his number is six hundred and sixty-six” (Revelation 13:18 NASB).
One of the greatest tests of the last days will revolve around the mark of the beast. From Revelation 13:17, we know that the mark of the beast is an economic symbol; because no one can buy, sell or trade in the world’s economic system unless they have received the beast’s mark. We also know from the preceding verse that worshiping the image of the beast will accompany his mark. What beastly image will people be worshiping in these last days? There are many answers to this question, but I believe that the simplest explanation is we will either worship God or ourselves.
The first commandment of The Satanic Bible could be boiled down to: Do unto thy self. Although this commandment is not listed in their little black book, the high priest of the Church of Satan and the author of The Satanic Bible, Anton LaVay, promoted a doctrine of self-indulgence, self-gratification, and self-rule. LaVey’s predecessor, Aleister Crowley, is “often referred to as the father of modern Satanism” [Baddeley, Lucifer Rising, p. 23]. In Crowley’s Book of the Law, he proclaims: “In this new age, the only moral commandment will be, ‘Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.’” Therefore, the Satanic Kingdom can be equated with the Kingdom of Self. When I mention the Kingdom of Self, know that I am also referring to the Satanic Kingdom, as well as Babylon, for they all focus on self.
“The Babylonians, that ruthless and impetuous people, who sweep across the earth… They are a law to themselves… whose strength is their god” (Habakkuk 1:6, 7, 11 NIV).
Just keep in mind that the Hebrew pictograph for the word “pride” tells us that pride is to lift yourself by your own strength, while humility comes when you destroy your wall of self-protection. Note that “self” is the key ingredient that determines whether one is full of pride or humility.
The mark of the beast starkly displays the reality of the Kingdom of Self. Infamously, everyone seems to know the number God has assigned to the beast – 666. God is literally speaking to us through this number, but its code-speak. The Lord is telling us the character of the beast and it corresponds to the image worshiped. Society has also been told that 666 is the number of the name – the name of a person called the Antichrist, which is one aspect of the truth. Also, “666 was the secret symbol of the ancient pagan mysteries connected with the worship of the Devil.” [benAbraham, Illuminato-666, http://www.benabraham.com/html/illuminati_-_1b.html and Newman, The 666 Syndrome, http://www.wordworx.co.nz/6syndrom.html]. Both man and the serpent were created on the sixth day, Satan has been described as being “man-centered” (as opposed to God-centered): “And He turned and said to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God’s interest, but man’s” (Matt 16:23 NASB). Thus the devil’s number appears to be a twist on man’s number.
Let’s regard the number 666 by looking at the meaning of the number 6 repeated three times. E.W. Bullinger’s book Number in Scripture tells us that the number 6 stands for man’s world with man’s enmity to God or man adding to God’s grace by perverting and corrupting it. Multiply the intensity of man’s enmity to God through the corruption of grace three times, and we understand one aspect of the character of the beast. The beast exists within you and me. It’s equivalent to a completely selfish man. This is an image people worship when they take the mark of the beast:
“But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money … lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God” (2 Timothy 3:1-2 NIV).
One aspect of truth is that the “beast” is the personification of Satan in those who have given their affections and will over to the things of this world. All of us have the choice each day to be or not to be part of the beast’s system.
Believers have spent an enormous amount of time and effort trying to figure out how the mark of the beast will come. The bottom line, in regard to the mark of the beast, is that everyone must choose to serve and live in the Kingdom of God or in the Kingdom of Self. Our primary objective should be to hit God’s mark, not the beast’s. The mark of the beast is like focusing on a sand trap while golfing. If we focus on the sand trap rather than the true goal, we’ll hit it. Let’s all of us press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:14). Let us not be enemies of the cross, whose god is their belly, and who set their minds on earthly things (Phil 3:18-19).
Rick Joyner remarks in his book Overcoming the Spirit of Poverty: “The only way we will not take the mark of the beast, regardless of whether we know what it is or not, is to have the mark of God. If we are marked by God, we will never have to fear taking the enemy’s mark.” The Bible makes it clear that a great many troubles are coming upon the earth in the last days, which corresponds with Paul telling us that “we must through many tribulations enter the Kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22 NKJV).
Entering the Kingdom of God is a process, and its path is the narrow road that Jesus walked. The Winter One-der-land walk of Jesus is clearly seen: “Then came the Feast of Dedication at Jerusalem. It was winter and Jesus was in the temple area walking in Solomon’s Colonnade (John 10:22-23).Jesus walked in His Temple specifically in the area of Solomon’s Colonnade during winter – during the Chanukah (also known as the Feast of Lights, the Feast of Miracles, and the Feast of Dedication). All the passages that speak of Solomon’s Colonnade tell us that it’s a place of miracles. Acts 5:12 also informs us that all the believers met together at Solomon’s Colonnade.
I believe that the celebration of Chanukah holds several keys to unlocking the mysteries of the Kingdom of God and the mysteries of His will. Not the least being the great mystery concerning Christ and the church becoming one flesh (Eph 5:25-33), which is the supreme antithesis of the falling away and man of sin being revealed – the Mystery of Iniquity – spoken of in 2 Thessalonians chapter 2. God has made known the mystery of His will according to His good pleasure. His ultimate purpose is gathering together in one all things in Christ (Eph 1:9-10).
You see God’s mystery is Christ Himself being reunited with all people created in His image. The great treasure God desires is for us all to be knit together in love, to walk in Him, and to be firmly established in the faith (Col 2:2). To get to this place of oneness, we all must journey to our personal Garden of Gethsamane by taking up the cross daily to crucify our selfish desires through choosing not my will, but Yours be done (Matt 26:39). Believers will be prepared for these difficult days through seeking the Kingdom of God first (Matt 6:33). Kingdom life literally boils down to obeying the King. In these end days, God’s Kingdom will not be shaken. Scripture declares that it cannot be shaken; therefore, if we build our lives upon it, neither can we.
Tomorrow we will dive into the depths of how the feast of Chanukah came about. This article is foundational to understanding the Maccabees battle. We will learn how a small rag-tag group of devout people overcame overwhelming odds to preserve their culture and faith from annihilation. Had this small remnant not taken their courageous stand against the Antichrist of their time (Antiochus Epiphanes IV) both Judaism and Christianity most likely would not exist today.
Copyright Dec. 9, 2012 – Author: Robin Main.
Most references to the things I write on this blog can be found in my book SANTA-TIZING: What’s wrong with Christmas and how to clean it up (available on amazon http://www.amazon.com/SANTA-TIZING-Whats-wrong-Christmas-clean/dp/1607911159/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1353692179&sr=1-1&keywords=SANTA_TIZING).