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Tracking Satan:     666 

I enclose a copy of the page from the 1890 Encyclopedia Britannica  [ 9th edition volume XX  page 499 ]  where Adolf Harnack shows how the Hebrew for Emperor Nero adds up to the number  666  found in Revelation 13.18.  And Harnack lists the other clues which point to Nero. 

But Nero is only one of the seven heads of the beast which has received its power from the dragon--that is, from Satan--as 13.2 tells us:  the dragon gave him his power.  The beast itself represents the Roman Empire, which embodies the four earlier empires of Babylon, the Persians, the Medes and the Greeks, described in 13.2 and Daniel 7.  The Roman Empire was the spiritual heir of these earlier empires whose territories, including Israel, it now occupies.  The Great Whore of 17.1, who sits on 7 hills like the City of Rome, is analogous to Babylon, the capital of the Babylonian Empire.

The writer of Revelation was clearly focused upon the pagan Roman Empire which pressed so heavily upon him and his fellow Christians:  2.10 the devil shall cast some of you into prison.  In 16.6 and 18.24, he indicts the Empire because it shed the blood of the saints.  Nero himself launched the first major Roman persecution of the Christians but they were already being persecuted all over the empire as described in Acts and the letters of St. Paul. 

The worship of the Roman emperor was imposed upon all who lived in the empire as 13.12 and 13.15 tell us:  as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.  Many Christians were put to death when they refused to put incense on Caesar's altar and  when they refused to serve in those Roman armies in which the image of Caesar was central to the military cult.  The worship of the emperor's image was the 1st century equivalent of 21st century flag worship.  The worship of military power in the America cult--praying around the flag pole--has the same spiritual DNA as the worship of the image of the beast--Caesar's picture--that John describes in 13.4:  they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast. 

In 13.7 John tells us that  it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them;  and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.  That echoes the doctrine found in Luke 4.5-7:  Satan is the ruler of the kingdoms of this world, and he demands worship as the price of  worldly  power.  And it is what Jesus tells us in John 12.31 and 14.30:  Satan is the prince of  this world.  In John 15.18-19 he teaches his followers that they also must be adversaries of the world.  In John 18.36 Jesus explains to Pilate in what way He is the King of the Jews:  My kingdom is not of this world.  Which is why his followers do not go to war to establish it.  

This basic doctrine of the early church was negated by the apostate Christians who made the deal with the Roman Emperor in the 4th century to establish that  worldly  Imperial Church which is still with us.  After the Roman Empire was permanently divided, the Imperial Church was divided into the Roman Catholic Church of the western empire and the so-called Orthodox Church of the eastern empire.  Which later became the Russian Orthodox Church and the Greek Orthodox Church, after the Empire disintegrated further.  The Catholic Church of the western empire later spawned the Lutheran Church, the Anglican Church, and the Presbyterian Church etc.   

All of these apostate churches were State Churches which sanctioned Christian armies.  And they tried to get rid of the book of Revelation because it presents the Roman Empire as  ruledby Satan.  Since they had made their deal with the Empire, they had to get rid of that theology.  Augustine wanted to get rid of Revelation, as did Luther.  The Eastern Church did omit it from their canon of the New Testament for several centuries.  Now these worldly churches ignore it or explain it away.  

That is the basic reason why modern  worldly  and patriotic so-called Christians have lost track of who Satan is and where he is to be found.  When they gather around the flag pole to pray and declare that America is the greatest country in the world !  and  Rule Britannia !  and Deutsland Uber Alles !  they perpetuate the apostasy whereby Christians  sur-render to Caesar and worship the beast.  [ See Render, Not Sur-render Unto Caesar on the Radical Christian web site, ]

It is an historical fact that the German Empire, the British Empire, the French Empire and the Russian Empire etc. are all direct descendents of the Roman Empire.  The American Empire is the son of the British Empire and the French Empire, and the grandson of the Roman Empire.  All of them waged wars to expand the empire, like America in the Philippines.  They all display the lies and the violence which are the characteristic signs of Satan.  They all shed the blood of the saints.  Americans pursued wealth without work by slavery and robbing the natives of their land. 

Adolf Harnack was a Lutheran professor, and an Imperial Christian, and he faults the anti Roman Empire doctrine he finds in the book of Revelation as incompatible with the doctrine found in Romans 13.1-7 which says that  God himself, not Satan, is the Ruler of the Empire.   See Chapter XI of Church of the Empire,  Augustine and the Manufacture of Scripture, where I show that it is a 4th century interpolation by Augustine.  [ See also Appendix  A:   James 4.4  Friendship  with  the  World  is  Enmity  with  God.  Galatians 6.14   The world is crucified unto me and I unto the world.  1 Jn 4.3,4  The spirit of anti-Christ is already in the world,but greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.  ]

Harnack was a believer in the German Empire, and an advisor to Kaiser Wilhelm.  When World War I began, he and 92 others signed a statement of support for the war which denied the German atrocities committed in Belgium in 1914.  It doesn't take a telescope to discover the works of Satan in the lies and the mass murder in which all the Christian nations of the world participated in World War I and II.  The Lutheran and Catholic pastors of Germany went along with Hitler's invasions of Poland and France and with the round up of the Jews.  [ See Hitler Deploys the Patriot Pastors. ] 

The allies were the good guys only compared to Hitler.  The Russian army raped a million women in its march across Europe.  And imposed a new slavery upon the countries of eastern Europe which the Nazis had occupied.  The British and the Americans carried out the systematic bombing of German cities and Japanese cities.  They killed half a million in Germany and crippled another half million, mostly women and kids and old folks.  They did the same thing to the Japanese.  The Catholic pilot who dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima destroyed a Catholic school full of kids at ground zero.  That qualifies as Satanic.  What Americans did in Vietnam was Satanic.  Real Christians need to keep track of the real history of how Satan operates in the world and avoid the silly escapism and the trivial pursuit found in the trash theology of writers like Thomas Horn and in the pseudo Christian sermons and books of the TV evangelists. 

If you want to learn more about the connections between Satan and the Vatican, read the history by David Kertzer, The Pope and Mussolini.  It describes how Pope Pius XI and Pope Pius XII helped Mussolini come to power in Italy and why they were the first to recognize Hitler's government.  The Pope came to regret his deal with the devil, but his belief in the State Church pushed him into it.  Patriotism made him go along with Mussolini's invasion of Ethiopia, even though he knew it was wrong by any standard, even that of the so-called Just War standard. 

The Pope actually did use the  unjust  war  phrase in a speech to some nurses.  But then he allowed his underlings to suppress it before his remarks were published in L'Osservatore romano.  That is, he avoided saying it publicly, because of his entanglement with Mussolini's government and his unwillingness to challenge Italian patriotism.  [ Kertzer 214-216 ]  And that loud silence was the policy of Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli in respect to both Mussolini and Hitler after he became Pope Pius XII in 1939. [ See Hitler Deploys  pages 63-65 ] 

Just as bad was the enthusiastic support for World War II by the Catholic bishops and the Protestant pastors of the world.  A war in which 60 million were killed, two thirds of them civilians.  A war in which more than a million women were raped.   [ See Rape in War Time. ] 

When the apostate Church of the Empire abandoned Christian pacifism in the 4th century, Augustine came up with the so-called just war theology, which furnished a fig leaf of morality to hide the shameful surrender of the bishops of the new Imperial Church.  World War I and World War II accurately measure what that doctrine really means.  In effect it justifies any and all wars.  It doesn't even raise the moral question because it trusts the sovereign--whether Nero or Mussolini or Hitler--to decide the justice of the war which he has decided to launch.   [ See Hitler Deploys page 23 ] 

In May 1936, after the Italians conquered Ethiopia, by dropping poison gas on fleeing villagers, Mussolini proclaimed:   Italy finally has her empire . . . salute after 15 centuries the reappearance of the Empire on the fateful hills of Rome.   [ page 238 ]  Geographically and historically it was an empty boast and an illusion.  He was a long way from re-establishing the old Roman Empire.  But it was true in a moral and spiritual way.  And it illustrates what the book of Revelation is trying to teach us. 

Terry  Sullivan    Oct 21  2015