Friday, October 26, 2007

Islam Resurgent (1)

Over the last few decades, a renaissance of Islam has been evident all over the world. Observers have been surprised by the advance of Islam. Many Christians are fearful.

What few people realise is that the resurgence of Islam was prophesied by God nearly 2000 years ago. We should not be afraid, because this is part of his plan and purpose for this world. John recorded the following vision.

I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, "Come!" I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest (Revelation 6:1,2).
Some commentators see it as a picture of Jesus Christ, and the victories of the gospel. The problem is that this horseman is armed with a bow, and there is no other place in the prophetic books where the Messiah is pictured as being armed with a bow. Bowmen are usually the enemies of God (Psalm 46:9).

The rider on the white horse probably represents a false messiah or a false religion. He looks like Jesus and could be mistaken for him, because he rides on a white horse. But the fact that he has a bow shows that he is really an enemy of God. Thus John has given a picture of a false messiah or a false religion making a powerful advance. It goes forth "conquering and to conquer".

In the Old Testament a number of nations are referred to as bowmen. In Jeremiah 49:344-39 the nation of Elam is described as being armed with a bow (cf Is 22:6). Elam was situated in the western part of modern Iran. The Persian army which came from the same area is also described as being armed with bows (Jeremiah 50:14,29,42). Iran is the leader of the Islamic renaissance which is taking place throughout the world.

There are bowmen in Arabia (Is 21:13-16). Libya and Turkey are all countries in which the religion of Islam is strong. Ishmael was an archer (Gen 21:20). He is the father of the Arab nations, where Islam is strong.

Islam claims to be based on the Bible. Mohammed is a false prophet who claimed to be a successor to Jesus. Thus a bowman on a white horse is a good description of the Islamic religion. It has certainly been conquering in recent times.

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