Copyright © 2015, 2019 Philadelphia Church of God
By Gerald Flurry
Strong leaders are rising on the world scene today in several nations, including Russia, China and Iran. But what about Europe? What about Germany?
Germany is one of the top exporters of military armaments in the world, and the third-largest exporter of goods. Its economy dominates the European Union. But Germany does not have a strong leader. Many critics have been voicing this view quite often lately.
However, there are several signs in world news that a strong leader is about to rise on the world scene. Also, a prophecy in Daniel 8 talks about a fiercely powerful king who will rise on the world scene in Europe and shock this world. It is one of the most astonishing prophecies in the Bible!
A strong German leader is imminent! When he comes to power, this world will be shocked as it has never been shocked before.
Yet if you look at the whole vision, it is tied to the return of Jesus Christ to this Earth. That may be hard for some people to believe, but it is clearly prophesied in your Bible! It is actually mentioned in about a hundred biblical prophecies.
On February 6, 2015, the leaders of Germany and France traveled to Moscow. They had been invited by Russian President Vladimir Putin to discuss the crisis in Ukraine. The leaders of these three nations forged some kind of a deal. Critics called it a terrible deal. They said it was so bad that they likened German Chancellor Angela Merkel to Neville Chamberlain.
Leading up to World War ii in 1938, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain went to Munich to inform Adolf Hitler that Britain and France had pressured Czechoslovakia to give up part of its country, the Sudetenland, to Nazi Germany. A peace treaty was signed to that effect. Winston Churchill called it the “Munich Surrender” and said it was a disgraceful, shameful act. He warned the Britons that it would lead to war, not peace.
Ms. Merkel doesn’t believe that lethal weapons should be given to the Ukrainians. She thinks that might cause the war to spread even more. Yet without help, the Ukrainians can offer little or no resistance to the Russians. That is why critics began to attack Chancellor Merkel for the deal she made with Russia. They say she is appeasing the Russians just like Chamberlain appeased Hitler and the Germans leading up to World War ii.
Upset Eastern Europeans voiced their displeasure on Twitter. Former Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk tweeted, “Once again, appeasement encourages the aggressor to greater acts of violence. Time to step up our policy based on cold facts, not illusions.” Lithuania’s foreign minister, Linas Linkevicius, tweeted: “‘Sudetenland’ in 1938 was supposed to appease aggressor. We know the results. Why these thoughts arising in time of #Munich conference 2015?”
At the Munich Security Conference just days after the deal with Russia was made, the late United States Sen. John McCain made the comparison even more explicit. “History shows us that dictators will always take more if you let them,” he said. “They will not be dissuaded from their brutal behavior when you fly to meet them to Moscow—just as leaders once flew to this city.” That was a brazen comparison between the treaty over Ukraine and the one made with Hitler in 1938.
When Chamberlain returned from Munich after giving away a big chunk of Czechoslovakia, he held up a piece of paper and waved it around, saying, “Peace in our time!” The British people were almost hysterical with joy at the thought that they would have peace.
And in less than a year, they were at war. That treaty did not bring peace!
Toward the end of 2014, Garry Kasparov, the former chess grandmaster who has become an outspoken critic of Vladimir Putin, said: “My problem is today you have so many politicians lining up to become a new Chamberlain. Where are the Churchills?”
Churchill warned throughout the 1930s that Western Europe was going to have war with Germany if it didn’t stop the aggression of the Nazis. If only the nations of Western Europe had allied together, they could have easily stopped Adolf Hitler, but they were afraid to. They wanted to make peace instead, and look what happened: the worst war ever recorded in human history! But another war is coming that will be far worse!
Calling Ms. Merkel a Chamberlain-type leader is a severe criticism! This is how people are criticizing Merkel publicly, but what are they saying privately?
This is a strong sign of the present mood in Europe, especially in Germany.
It is also a sign that a strong ruler is about to come on the scene in Germany.
Routinely in German history, when Germans become anxious about world events, they call on a strongman to lead them! They have done so throughout history—and they will do so again.
To make matters worse, after Merkel made this peace pact, Mr. Putin broke it immediately! It didn’t even really go into effect!
Vladimir Putin is taking advantage of Merkel and the West. There is an enormous lack of leadership in Europe and the world today—and Putin sees it! He is marching through Ukraine, taking vast areas of land that don’t belong to him, just like Adolf Hitler did leading up to and during World War ii. History is repeating itself. We are giving away chunks of Ukraine just like we gave away chunks of Czechoslovakia. We did nothing when Hitler invaded Austria and took it over, and we are going the same way again.
Another sign that this will bring on a strong leader in Germany is that Britain and America, the victors of World Wars i and ii, were not even invited to that February 6 conference. That is quite a slap in the face to these countries. It shows how out of touch they are with what is going on, and how irrelevant they have become.
That is yet another sign that somebody will have to provide some leadership—or else Vladimir Putin will keep marching through Europe! Somebody has to provide some leadership and stand up to Putin.
And somebody is going to.
That is an amazing prophecy that you will be able to see occur before your eyes. It is going to come soon—probably within the next few years—and you will be able to watch it happen through your world news!
This isn’t new—we have been prophesying about this event for some 80 years! But it is something we need to comprehend and do something about!
Daniel 8 is one of the most astonishing prophecies in the Bible, and we need to understand it.
The last part of verse 17 says, “for at the time of the end shall be the vision.” It gets more specific in verse 19: “And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation ….” Not only is this about the end time, God wants us to realize the urgency of this. This is the last end—the end of the end time! Daniel was written only for the end time (Daniel 12:4, 9). God wants us to become urgent about this.
Notice this strong leader who will come on the world scene in Europe: “And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up” (Daniel 8:23).
God calls this leader “a king.”
Years ago, Herbert W. Armstrong met with Otto von Habsburg, the head of the 700-year-old house of Habsburg, which ruled the Holy Roman Empire in the dynasty prior to Napoleon. At that time, Habsburg was a member of the European Parliament. He said: “The [European] Community is living largely by the heritage of the Holy Roman Empire, though the great majority of the people who live by it don’t know by what heritage they live.”
Look through history, and you will find six resurrections of that Holy Roman Empire. Today the seventh resurrection is staring us in the face—still, people don’t know what it is! That is amazing! Not even the people who live under it know it.
“We do possess a European symbol which belongs to all nations equally,” Mr. Habsburg said. “This is the crown of the Holy Roman Empire, which embodies the tradition of Charlemagne” (emphasis mine throughout). That crown is something this king in Europe will assume.
This soon-coming ruler could literally be called a king. Even if he is not, the Bible gives him that label. When the Bible talks about a king, in most cases it’s saying that this is not a democratic government. Even if he doesn’t have that title, he is going to lead like a king. This vision in Daniel shows that the European empire is about to become a lot more authoritative.
Daniel 11:21 prophesies that this strong leader will come into power “by flatteries”—probably not by votes, but through a coalition government of some kind. We need to watch Germany and Europe carefully. Although Bible prophecy gives us the outline of how it will unfold, we don’t know the details.
What is “the tradition of Charlemagne” Mr. Habsburg referenced? Some powerful Europeans want to return to his kind of leadership in Europe. They praise the traditions of Charlemagne (Charles the Great). They encourage Europeans to “revive your roots.” Do people really know what that history is about?
The Franks were the first barbaric tribe to embrace Catholicism, but it was for political gain, not religious reasons. Mostly of Germanic origin, the Franks used the Catholic Church to support their expansionist policies, while the church relied on Frankish rulers for protection. It was a union based on politics alone.
The Frankish kingdom reached the pinnacle of its power during the rule of Charlemagne. Before Charlemagne’s emergence as world ruler, the political scene in Europe was greatly divided. Germany was sliced into many different tribes. Much of Italy was occupied by the Lombards. Byzantium was recognized as the successor to the eastern region of the old Roman Empire. Charlemagne, in conjunction with the papal throne, eventually changed all that—but not without much bloodshed.
Charlemagne was the second ruler of the “Holy” Roman Empire, after Justinian. As emperor, Charlemagne felt it his duty to defend the church. In a.d. 774, at the request of Pope Leo iii, he entered northern Italy and conquered the Lombard kingdom, uniting Italy for the first time in centuries. In a.d. 799, he again came to the aid of the pope, who was assaulted, brutally beaten, and thrown into prison by a band of conspirators. With the military backing of Charles and his Frankish troops, the pope was exonerated of all wrongdoing and reinstated to his ecclesiastic office.
The following year, in Rome, while Charlemagne was kneeling in prayer during a Christmas celebration inside old St. Peter’s Church, the pope placed a crown upon his head, pronouncing him “the 73rd emperor of the fourth world empire.”
At this point, we should note that throughout the Middle Ages, many scholars, theologians, even popes, knew the Roman Empire was the fourth world-ruling kingdom. Many of them even identified this fourth kingdom with the one Daniel spoke of in his prophecy (see Daniel 2:37-43). That’s why Europeans and Catholics kept trying to revive the empire! The Bible said there would only be four such empires. However, the fourth empire would have 10 resurrections, according to Bible prophecy. The last seven of those resurrections would be called Holy Roman Empires, because they were ruled by church and state.
As king of the Franks, Charlemagne was able to subjugate every single German tribe but one: the Saxons. The Saxons clung to their own faith and refused, even on pain of death, to submit to Roman Catholicism. Charlemagne determined to force his brand of Christianity on them with the sword. For years the Saxons obstinately resisted. At one point, out of sheer frustration, Charlemagne executed 4,500 Saxon prisoners. This barbarous act angered the Saxons even more.
It took 30 years for Charles to completely extinguish the “Saxon problem,” but not before multiple thousands had been executed for their religious beliefs. After more than 18 conquests against the Saxons, Charles finally prevailed. In the end, Saxons either subjected themselves to the rule of Charles, or their defiance ended in death.
The Holy Roman Empire has never been democratic. It could never be. Even Pope Pius xii said the church had twin enemies: the democracies and communism. He was pope at the peak of Communist power.
As emperor of the “Holy” Roman Empire, Charles felt it his duty to spread the Christian faith using whatever means necessary. The New Encyclopedia Britannica says, “The violent methods by which this missionary task was carried out had been unknown to the earlier Middle Ages, and the sanguinary [bloody] punishment meted out to those who broke canon law or continued to engage in pagan practices called forth criticism in Charles’s own circle” (“Charlemagne, Emperor”).
The violence Charlemagne used to enforce the Catholic religion on his subjects was simply unknown in earlier empires! He forced his brand of Christianity on everyone. His empire may have had distinct ties to the ancient Romans, but it was certainly not “holy”—even if there was a great church guiding it.
And yet, for centuries to come, the aim of succeeding emperors was to restore the tradition of Charlemagne in their quest to revive the Roman Empire!
Even today, Germany and a great church are working to restore the tradition of Charlemagne. They have almost completed the structure. Still, it is a mystery to most of the world’s inhabitants.
Let the world beware! That power structure is ready to burst on the world scene—again!
Charlemagne’s bloody conquests were the worst ever in the history of the previous empires. The conquests of the next Holy Roman Empire are going to be the worst suffering ever inflicted on human beings in the history of man! (Matthew 24:21-22; Daniel 12:1; Jeremiah 30:1-10).
It will all be done in the spirit of Charlemagne. Most people won’t awaken out of their stupor until it’s too late!
Charlemagne’s empire, one of the greatest ever to rule in Europe, did not even outlive his son and successor. After it dissolved, the peoples on the western side of his empire eventually became known as French. The German-speaking peoples between the Rhine and the Slavs in the east developed into Germany. The fact that he ruled over both peoples is why some dispute the national heritage of Charlemagne.
Look again at what Otto von Habsburg said about the crown jewels: “We do possess a European symbol which belongs to all nations equally; this is the crown of the Holy Roman Empire, which embodies the tradition of Charlemagne.”
Adolf Hitler was the leader of the sixth resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire. He knew all about the crown of Charlemagne and the crown jewels.
Much of the world looks upon the Jews as God’s chosen people. In Vienna, Hitler came to believe that God had replaced the Jews with the Germans and the Holy Roman Empire. He believed the Germans were God’s chosen people. This is why the crown jewels of that empire meant so much to him.
In 1938, at a rally in Nuremberg, “Hitler had brought from Vienna, after 140 years, the insignia of the First Reich [Charlemagne]—the imperial crown, the orb of empire, the scepter and the imperial sword. At the presentation of these symbols of imperialism he solemnly vowed that they would remain in Nuremberg forever” (John Toland, Adolf Hitler).
That was a strong statement. He “solemnly vowed” that the crown jewels of the Holy Roman Empire were to “remain in Nuremberg forever.” This is like a death-defying commitment to the Holy Roman Empire and his god! He made a vow forever!
Of course, Hitler lost, and that didn’t happen. Those relics are back in Austria, but they are awaiting the next ruler of the Holy Roman Empire.
Historians call Charlemagne’s rule the First Reich. Adolf Hitler’s rule was known as the Third Reich. Hitler knew the crown jewels would be a powerful symbol of Charlemagne’s First Reich.
Hitler came in the tradition of Charlemagne! He, like Charlemagne, savagely and brutally destroyed people as no empire before him!
Many scoffed at what Margaret Thatcher said in 1995: “You have not anchored Germany to Europe; you have anchored Europe to a newly dominant, unified Germany. In the end, my friends, you’ll find it will not work.”
Mrs. Thatcher knew it would have a bad ending. She knew it “could be ghastly,” as Bernard Connolly said. It will be ghastlier than you can even imagine!
We have forgotten our own recent history. Hitler started World War ii. About 50 million people were killed.
The next leader of the Holy Roman Empire is going to commit crimes against humanity even more monstrous! It will all be done in the tradition of Charlemagne! It’s time for this world to wake up to what is happening in Europe!
At the conclusion of the Yalta Conference in February 1945, Prime Minister Winston Churchill and President Franklin Roosevelt signed a document to prevent Germany from ever coming in the tradition of Charlemagne again. They said, “It is our inflexible purpose to destroy German militarism and Nazism and to ensure Germany will never again be able to disturb the peace of the world.”
That country had started the War of 1870, World War i and World War ii. It has a history of starting wars. Churchill and Roosevelt understood Germany’s history of warfare. The Allies virtually made a vow that they would never allow that to happen again.
Yet here we are over 70 years later, and Germany is leading Europe again! America and Britain have forgotten that recent history. And as a result, we are allowing it to repeat itself! That lapse of memory will be the costliest ever for both nations. (Request our free booklet Germany and the Holy Roman Empire.)
Historian Victor Davis Hanson wrote in the National Review about how the 1930s are happening again. “World War ii could have been prevented had Western Europe united to deter Germany,” he explained (Feb. 19, 2015). But they didn’t—they were afraid to take on Hitler—and disaster resulted. Three times in this article, Hanson said we should have learned from that deadly error: “the 1930s should have taught,” “the 1930s should have demonstrated,” “the 1930s should have reminded us.”
What did we learn from World War ii? I’m telling you, history is repeating itself! We must see what is happening. America, Britain and many Western nations are retreating from every part of the world. Our countries have broken wills when it comes to their foreign policy—and that doesn’t lead to peace! It leads to war! You can’t negotiate peace when people on the other side want war! History teaches that lesson from beginning to end!
What is interesting is that in making this historical comparison, Mr. Hanson was specifically referring to how the aggressors this time around are Vladimir Putin’s Russia, the terrorist group calling itself the Islamic State, and Iran. And he is right—the West is showing shameful weakness in dealing with these modern threats.
But there is a great irony here. The weakness being demonstrated by the West is exposing the crying need for stronger leadership. And whether or not people want to believe it, that leadership is going to arise in Germany.
Soon, in a dramatic way, the threat from Germany is going to eclipse that of the Islamic State and Iran, and for a short time, even that of today’s Russia—many times over!
Today, Europeans are looking for another ruler like Charlemagne! The Holy Roman Empire is facing us again. It is rising again on the world and people don’t even know it. Even the people who live under it don’t realize they are living by the guidelines and rules of the Holy Roman Empire. That is astounding!
Daniel 8:24 prophesies about this coming king: “And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he … shall destroy the mighty and the holy people.” That is a terrifying statement!
Prophecy says the European empire will be pared down from its current configuration of 28 nations to 10 nations, and it will wreak havoc on this world!
Nobody wants to talk about it, but there is an explosive tendency in the Germans’ history. When the right leader comes to power, watch out! We don’t like to admit it, but we must face the truth. Germany is about to start World War iii—according to your Bible. It will be the deadliest war ever on Earth.
Despite horrifying news in the short term, the prophecy of this coming European strongman actually has a wonderful, hope-filled conclusion.
Daniel 8:25 reads, “And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many ….” This man will talk about peace. He will be like Vladimir Putin, saying, Come to Moscow and let’s talk about peace—yet as soon as the talks are over, he attacks even more fiercely! That is the kind of “peace” this strongman wants, and he will use deceit to get it.
However, look at the end of verse 25: “[H]e shall also stand up against the Prince of princes [Jesus Christ]; but he shall be broken without hand.” This man and the empire he rules will be broken—not with physical hands or a physical army, but by Jesus Christ Himself!
Christ is about to return to this Earth and stop all of this horror. He says in Matthew 24:21-22 that if He didn’t return, no flesh would be saved alive! Man cannot stop what’s coming. He created this monster of nuclear power, and like a Frankenstein monster, he can’t control it! It is out of hand!
We live in a dangerous world! These are not ordinary times. Isaiah 33:7 prophesies that the ambassadors of peace are going to weep bitterly because they’re not going to have peace. Isaiah 59:8 says, “The way of peace they know not ….”
But Christ is going to return. Only Jesus Christ can bring us peace, joy and happiness forever. That is what these prophecies are ultimately all about! So this is the best possible news you could ever hear!
Thankfully, the seventh and last head of the Holy Roman Empire will usher in the coming of the Messiah. No nation will ever again be ruled in the tradition of Charlemagne.
This is the conclusion to the same vision about this strong leader coming on the world scene, this king that’s going to rule Europe!
What that king and Holy Roman Empire brings on this world will stagger people’s minds because it’s so horrendous! But the good news is that it is going to be stopped. We are viewing the last resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire. Thank God for that!Continue Reading: 2: Who Will Be the Next Charlemagne?