A major key to understanding the Bible and its prophecies is knowing that God works in dual stages. The first man, Adam, was a precursor to the second Adam, Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:45-47). The Old Covenant predated and foreshadowed the New Covenant. The priesthood of ancient Israel typified New Testament Christians (1 Peter 2:5, 9). Christ’s first coming foreshadowed His Second Coming. Biblical examples abound.
This vital key of duality unlocks many Bible prophecies. Often, there is a physical type and spiritual antitype. At other times, a preliminary fulfillment is only a forerunner of a latter, more dramatic fulfillment, usually occurring in the “time of the end,” prior to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. God says we must look at “former” events and “consider” them if we are to understand the “latter end” of His prophecies (Isaiah 41:22). Though many prophecies have been fulfilled in the past, most of them were only a small type of a greater end-time fulfillment. Many Bible scholars fail to see that past, partially fulfilled prophecies still have an end-time fulfillment.
You can prove from your own Bible what I am saying. God teaches us to “prove all things” (1 Thessalonians 5:21).
This principle applies to certain prophecies related to America today.
Daniel 8 is an example we need to understand.
Verses 9-12 had an ancient fulfillment. Virtually all commentaries agree who the “little horn” in verse 9 is: Antiochus Epiphanes, the ruthless Seleucid ruler who deceitfully obtained rule in Palestine in 176 b.c. and attempted to annihilate the Jews and their faith.
However, the last part of verse 17 shows that this prophecy is for “the time of the end,” and verse 23 verifies that certain details will occur “in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full ….”
The Daniel 8 prophecy primarily focuses on the Church of God. This whole vision is about the daily sacrifices in the temple (verses 11-14). Today, in “the time of the end,” the temple is God’s Church (Ephesians 2:20-21).
This is another example of duality: The ancient nation of Israel was a forerunner of God’s Church, which Scripture labels spiritual “Israel” (e.g. Galatians 6:16; Ephesians 2:12).
Perhaps you have no history with that Church. But what happened in spiritual Israel is still extremely relevant to you, and I will explain why.
If you want to know how Satan operates, just look at what he did to God’s Church.
The details of this prophecy have very personal, emotional meaning to me—because we dealt personally with the Antiochus inside the Church of God. Satan elevated that man to the highest office in the Church and used him to destroy it from within! Daniel 8:11 says this man “magnified himself even to [against] the prince of the host [Jesus Christ], and by him the daily sacrifice [the work of God] was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down.” The devil used this Antiochus-type man inside the Church of God to destroy God’s work. He acted like God and had the gall to magnify himself even against Jesus Christ! Only Satan could motivate a man to operate so boldly.
Verse 12 further describes this man’s character: “And an host [a demon army] was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.” From inside the Church, this man cast down the truth to the ground, changing the doctrines and kicking out anyone who disagreed. He was a lawless man! Moreover, his campaign of lawlessness was very successful. It was all “by reason of transgression,” meaning revolt, rebellion, sin against lawful authority. The people in God’s Church were sinning, so they lacked God’s power. As a result, this army of demons was able to march in and destroy 95 percent of God’s people spiritually.
Verses 13 and 14 prophesied that the work of God’s Church would be halted but then resume after 2,300 morning and evening sacrifices. The work was raised up from the ruins by a faithful few who did not cast truth to the ground (Amos 9:11).
This whole story is told in our free book Raising the Ruins. I would like to give you a free copy. It is filled with details about what happened in God’s Church after Herbert W. Armstrong died in 1986. That Church was devastated.
This prophecy in Daniel 8 applies to God’s Church. It also directly applies to you. In this book, I am showing how this prophecy also applies to prophetic Israel, especially America. How can we know these nations are included in this prophecy?
The more you know about what happened in spiritual Israel, the Church, the better you can understand the crisis in America.
That army of demons is still around. They wrecked the Church, and now they are wrecking nations!
Look at verses 23 and 24 of Daniel 8. These verses specifically describe “a king of fierce countenance”—a strongman, a tyrant—rising up in the “latter time,” “when the transgressors are come to the full.” This aligns with several other biblical prophecies referring to a mighty political leader who is about to emerge to lead a terribly destructive European empire.
This man too is an end-time type of Antiochus. He will be somewhat in the mold of Adolf Hitler, yet far more subtle and smooth. He is a leader who understands “dark sentences” and is able to destroy mightily—“not by his own power,” but by the devil’s power. Many other prophecies show that God will use the European power this man leads—a final, latter-day resurrection of the old Holy Roman Empire—to correct His sinning people.
This strong and deadly leader’s mind will change and become far more evil (Habakkuk 1:11; Isaiah 10:7). He is going to martyr God’s people (“the holy people”)—those who have rebelled against God. Other prophecies show that this martyrdom will occur during a time Jesus Christ calls “great tribulation” (Matthew 24:21; Revelation 6:9-11). They also reveal that the end-time nations of Israel (America and Britain) will be conquered during the same period (e.g. Isaiah 10:5-6; Jeremiah 1:13-14; 30:4-7). This tyrant wants to “blot out the name of Israel.”
So Daniel 8:24 applies to spiritual Israel (God’s Church) and prophetic Israel (America and Britain). Both will be corrected at the same time and by the same European power. Barack Obama has led and is still leading Biden and America to their death (Ezekiel 33:11). He is destroying America, and everybody should see that. He has played a key role in weakening the U.S. to the point that the Holy Roman Empire can easily conquer us.
The nations of Israel also “cast down the truth to the ground” (Daniel 8:12) in a secular way. The U.S. superpower leads the charge. Its Constitution, which is based on many biblical principles, is being assailed and scrapped. This nation also rejected God’s warning message, as did Britain. The context of Daniel 8 shows us this.
“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 …” (verse 25). Notice: This Antiochus has a policy of craft. He misleads people, appearing to come in peace before he destroys them!
This is the way Satan operates. To destroy God’s Church, he managed to plant a spiritual Antiochus right at the top, who desecrated the spiritual temple and cast the truth to the ground. And to destroy the nations of Israel, Satan will use a political Antiochus who leads the end-time European empire. His army will march right into the Holy City, Jerusalem, to begin his physical assault (e.g. Daniel 11:31; Mark 13:14; Luke 21:20). The United States, Britain and Israel (biblical Judah) are all prophesied to fall together at the hands of that European power (Hosea 5:5).
Biblical prophecy shows that Satan leads both the first spiritual Antiochus and this last political Antiochus (who leads the European empire). We now know that he used the same strategy to weaken physical Israel in between those two attacks. The highest office in the world’s number one superpower, which happens to be a descendant of ancient Israel, is a big target for Satan. There he placed another Antiochus-type who undermines the nations of Israel and prepares them for their destruction by a united Europe!
This is why we can apply the Daniel 8 prophecy to prophetic Israel. This chapter has a duality that helps us understand verses 9-12. The key of duality unlocks many Bible prophecies. Sadly, the tragedy and devastation within God’s Church is now playing out on a grand scale in America and Britain. The Great Tribulation is approaching rapidly.
This Tribulation period—during which God, as punishment for these peoples, allows Satan and the demons devastating power—lasts 2½ years. Then comes the Day of the Lord, when God Himself will correct those who still refuse to repent. This will last one year, for a total of 3½ years (Revelation 11:2-3; 13:5).
Then, thankfully, will come the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, which will bring an end to all the suffering! (Daniel 8:25).
A ‘Man of Sin’
Another prophecy provides still more detail relevant to what is happening in America today.
In 2 Thessalonians 2, the Apostle Paul prophesied about some events that would occur just before “the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” (verse 1). Notice this astounding prophecy: “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day [the Second Coming of Christ] shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition [or destruction]” (verse 3). This is a great “falling away” in the Church. When Satan attacked God’s Church, it triggered a great falling away because most of God’s people were lukewarm, and God’s work was destroyed.
This prophecy says a “man of sin” would be revealed inside that Church. This man is called the “son of perdition,” or destruction—the same title as Judas Iscariot, who was actually possessed by the devil (Luke 22:3; John 13:27). Satan has a lot of power. And Satan used a man.
This man “opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God” (2 Thessalonians 2:4). This Satan-inspired man acted like he was God, taking the place of God in that spiritual temple. That is how arrogant Satan is, acting like God. He thinks he is God, and he has rebelled against God and tried to overthrow God! And he inspired a “man of sin” who did the same.
The prophecy in 2 Thessalonians 2 also includes another important individual.
Verse 7 speaks of a man who “restrained” this evil force in the Church until he was taken out of the way (Revised Standard Version). That man was Herbert W. Armstrong. After he died in 1986, the devil was cast down and this “man of sin,” also called the “son of perdition,” took over the Church. Using this man, Satan was able to destroy the Church that Mr. Armstrong had founded.
And notice what happened immediately after that: “And then shall that Wicked [Satan the devil] be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming” (verse 8). After Mr. Armstrong was taken out of the way, Satan was cast down (see Appendix B). Now everybody can see him because he is full of wrath and wreaking great destruction! Satan turned 95 percent of the people in God’s Church away from God. God had to raise up another work through the 5 percent who remained faithful to the truth, to reveal Satan and his man to those who are willing to see. God would not allow this spiritual Antiochus to blot out the name of Israel, but he did wreck most of God’s Church!
Verse 9 says this man comes “after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders.” Can you detect this evil spiritual influence in our world today? It is a real spiritual power, and it practically mesmerizes people with its lies! This points back to Revelation 12:9 and the fact that Satan has unmatched powers of deception.
What happened in God’s Church shows you something of a blueprint for what Satan began to do in these nations. This is why that Church history is so relevant and important for you to grasp.
The book you are reading exposes the devil. We saw firsthand what he did to the Church. Now we are watching him unleash the same kind of destruction on our nations! The difference is, the destruction in God’s Church was on a spiritual level, and the three nations are being destroyed physically. This will lead to these nations being conquered by a Satan-possessed leader (Hosea 5:5; Habakkuk 1:11).
These scriptures reveal one of the defining spiritual truths of our world today. They explain why America is rapidly being transformed into a different nation!
What invaluable insight biblical prophecy and prophetic duality give us.