How to Be a Prophet

The Amazing Criswell has nothing on me in the prophesizing game.

The Amazing Criswell has nothing on me in the prophesizing game.

I drive quite a bit for my job, often in Eastern Kentucky where the radio choices are limited.  As a result I listen to radio preachers.  Some are quite good and inspiring.  Most aren’t and are downright terrifying.  On a recent road trip, I heard a preacher talking about prophecy and he humbly said:  “Brothers and sisters, some say I have the gift of prophecy! I would never claim to have that gift, but if I do, it’s because the Lord has blessed me to speak  the truth of His word!”  In other words, “Of course, I am a prophet.” He then went on the explain the End of Days in terms only slightly more complex than the Unabomber Manifesto.  Frankly, I couldn’t follow it.

It did, however, get me thinking:  What if this guy is a prophet?  More importantly, what if I am?  If I am, I’ve never really tried to use my skills.  Maybe I should.

All your major religions have prophets.  The Abrahamic faiths have Moses, Isaiah and many others.  Islam throws in Mohammed, too.  Mormons have Joseph Smith.  Scientology gives us Tom Cruise.

I can’t claim to be a theologian or even particularly religious.  I have, however, read the Bible–the entire thing.  In fact, I’ve probably read it all several times.  I don’t think of the Bible as a book.  It’s really a collection of short stories, memoirs and musings by a variety of authors.  These writings are chock full of sex and violence, good news and bad news, rules, laws and, of course, prophecy.

Isaiah is the Babe Ruth of the Biblical prophets, the big hitter of the bunch. Others, like Nahum, are more Dal Maxvill.  They all foretell the future with varying degrees of accuracy.  The wildest, though, is John, and he is saved for the very end.  His book–Revelation–is like something Hunter Thompson might have written after a peyote bender.  This book is the one that almost everyone knows something about, regardless of religious faith or lack thereof.

A good prophet can interpret this mess and make his own predictions.  Those are my aims.

Let’s clarify up front that the book is Revelation, not Revelations.  Technically, it is the Revelation of John.  Who was John?  No one knows for sure.  Some think he was John the Apostle, while others think he was an entirely different cat.  We know he lived on the island of Patmos; thus, we can call him John of Patmos.  Even though my name is John, it damn sure isn’t me.  The wild imagery of his book seems completely out-of-place with the rest of the New Testament, but it made the cut when the books of the Bible were canonized way back when, so it’s part of the playbook.

I offer the preceding paragraph only to make it appear that I am an erudite Biblical scholar.  I am not.  Regardless, I know quite a bit about it and am willing to speculate as to its meaning.  This puts me on par with the vast majority of folks who think they are, in fact, erudite Biblical scholars.  Thus, I can be a prophet, a false one mind you, but a prophet nonetheless.

I won’t debate the literal versus figurative meaning of the Bible.  I know that a lot of folks say that the Bible is to be taken literally.  For example, Adam and Eve is a true story right down to the last detail.  Hey, how do I know? As a prophet, I would only predict the future, not try to interpret the past.

One thing, though, that has to be subject to some consensus is that Revelation cannot be taken literally.  If is literal, the signs of the last days are going to be very easy to identify.  A seven-headed, crown-wearing monster will be hard to miss.  There will be beings that look like animals with eye balls all over them; angels blowing trumpets; an archangel; a whore; and a bunch bad doings.  I’m not the quickest on the uptake, but if this all literal, I’ll catch on fairly quickly.  I’m into symbolism, and I like to think John was, too.

Most of us are concerned about the Beast.  Actually, there are two beasts:  One from the sea and one from the Earth.  The Sea Beast has a seven heads, crowns, etc.  The Earth Beast has a couple of horns and is basically charged with making everyone do the bidding of Sea Beast.  Got it?

If I were a prophet–a real one–I could and would interpret this symbolism.  I think I can do that.  Revelation is the best source for prophecy because you can make into whatever you want with just a little imagination.  For example, Charles Manson made it all about the Beatles.  Read and learn.

Everyone will have to get the mark of the Beast, which we all know is the number 666.  Without that, we can’t buy or sell stuff. To make a long story short, the Beast (or Beasts–I get a little confused here) do battle with the Lord of Lords and, predictably, lose.  They are thrown into the Lake of Fire to be tormented for all eternity.  It goes without saying–even though I now say (or “prophesy”) it–the Lake of Fire is a bad beat.

Here’s what you don’t want to do:  DON’T JOIN UP WITH THE BEAST.  If you encounter a seven-headed anything or a dude with horns, steer clear.  But, what if it IS symbolic?  Then, we’ve got a problem. That’s where a prophet has real value.

I once worked with a Seventh Day Adventist who passed out literature in our office saying that the Papacy is the Beast.  Honestly, it was very hard to follow.  I wasn’t convinced.  A lot of brainy folks think old John was talking about Emperor Nero Caesar, because through some convoluted numerology his name corresponds with 666.  I talked to a lady once who said that the Social Security Administration is the Beast.  While those are enticing theories, take a look at this:

BARACK:  6 letters

HUSSEIN:  7 letters

OBAMA:      5 Letters

Note how his full name totals 18 letters.  What numbers divides into 18 three times?  6, of course.  THREE sixes or 6-6-6.  It couldn’t be any clearer.  That’s my prophetic take on it.

(As an aside, some ancient texts show the number as 616, but we’re not going down that road.  Such reckless speculation would render meaningless Iron Maiden’s classic song The Number of the Beast.)

But, what of the seven heads and whatnot?  Well, first the Beast of the Sea is obviously the United Nations which covers all seven continents.  The ten crowns could well be the 10 non-permanent members of the UN Security Council for all I know.   Maybe Obama is the Beast of the Earth.  His ears are kind of like horns.  Plus, he’s a smoker.  That would explain speaking like a dragon.

It makes perfect sense.  The first beast (the UN) and the second beast (Obama) will gather together to make war against the Lord of Lords.  We can all see that coming, can’t we?  I do.

How about the Whore of Babylon?  Centuries ago, lots of folks said it was the Catholic Church.  The Catholic Church said it would be a fake Catholic Church.  No one, apparently, ever thought it would be a real whore, so don’t try to burn Miley Cyrus at the stake.

We know that ancient Babylon is in Iraq, so I say we call Iraq Babylon.  When John spoke of this whore reigning “over the kings of the earth,” could he have been speaking of the United States?  Hmmm.  Starting to make some sense now, huh? No?  Who’s the prophet here–me or you?  Ignore me at your own peril.

There are tons of details in Revelation, but I have neither the time nor interest to become familiar with them. I’ve made my point, whatever it may be.

Through a cursory reading of the Bible and libelous logic, I’ve just turned the President of the United States of America into the Beast (or Beasts).  Someone reading this agrees with me.  (By the way, don’t tell me if you do).  So, I’m now a prophet, false of otherwise.

In truth, I’m not a prophet (at least as far as I know).  I used to bet on football games and displayed no gift for prescience.  The last great prophet was probably The Amazing Criswell, star of several of Ed Wood’s films, including as the narrator of Plan Nine From Outer Space.  While he was wrong about Mae West becoming President and the outbreak of cannibalism in Pennsylvania, he wasn’t far off on predicting all-homosexual cities.  He predicted the end of the world to occur on August 18, 1999.  He was certainly no less of a prophet than the clown who predicted the end for May 21, 2011.

On the off-chance that I’m wrong, and I am a prophet, I need to make some predictions, so I conclude now with ten simple predictions or prophetic musings, if you will:

  1. In 2014, Tim Tebow will get a try out with an NFL team, and it will receive news coverage similar to the Super Bowl.
  2. In late 2013, a minor celebrity will be arrested.  His or her mug shot will be quite embarrassing.
  3. Any day now, a politician will become embroiled in a sex scandal, which he will blame on a troubled childhood or substance abuse.  Or both.
  4. The 2016 Presidential race will be littered with an appalling array of unqualified candidates.
  5. In 2018, the United States Constitution will be amended to replace the Electoral College with an American Idol-style reality show hosted by Eminem and Brent Musberger.
  6. By 2020, the U.S. will return to its conservative values, outlawing all forms of sexual activity, unless it involves use of a firearm.
  7. In 2022, Scientology will cease to exist, as the last member states:  “No one ever believed this nutty shit anyway.”
  8. At 80 years old, O.J. Simpson will die when someone just stabs the living hell out of him.
  9. In 2031, a cure for cancer will be perfected.  Unfortunately, it will so expensive that no one can afford it.
  10. In 2036, Jesus will return to Earth.  He will quickly be branded a dangerous socialist and denied a work visa in the United States.

If none of that happens, then I’ll second John on predicting a multi-headed sea beast.  That should cover all my bases.

©thetrivialtroll.wordpress.com 2013

How Evil or Not Is Our President?

I’ve watched a little of the History Channel series on the Bible.  A lot of folks are bothered by the violence in it.  I assume those people haven’t actually read the Bible, the Old Testament in particular.  There is incest, forced slavery, rape, murder of every description and even genocide.  It’s tough stuff.  A lot of folks who want to ban other books because of the Bible would probably want to ban the Bible itself if they ever read it.

Some are upset by the portrayal of Satan.  Why?  He looks like our president. Really, he does (the TV Satan, that is).  It’s supposed to be a coincidence, and maybe it is.  It does, however, raise the question of whether Obama is, in fact, Satan or just really evil.  My conservative friends think so.  My liberal friends think quite the opposite, of course.  The hard right (rock-ribbed Republicans, as my Dad would have said) reject everything Obama says or does as wrong-headed and Socialist.  The Left accepts everything he says or does as being brilliant and enlightened.  In other words, he’s the Democrat version of George W. Bush.

satan

I don’t know much about Satan or Lucifer or Beelzebub or whatever you call him.  The Bible doesn’t talk that much about him, either.  All this stuff about him being the proudest angel and falling from grace, etc., isn’t in the Bible.  Regardless, I know he’s bad news.  He tempts us with all kinds of evil.  I can’t endorse that behavior, although I have to admit that I’ve enjoyed a few of his temptations.  He’s also the overlord of Hell, which is bad in all possible ways with its lakes of fire, weeping and wailing and the obligatory gnashing of teeth.

So, why the Hell does the President look so much like Satan?  There really can’t be a good explanation, UNLESS–you got it–he IS Satan.  Okay, I know that’s a stretch.  What if he’s just the Anti-Christ?  The evidence is disturbing to say the least:

  • The Westboro Baptist Church thinks he’s the Anti-Christ.  That’s a credible source for theological truths.  They also think the U.S. Army is dominated by homosexuals.
  • The Obamacare microchip implants are certainly a bad sign.  The Mark of the Beast.
  • The name “Barack” has 6 letters, as in 6-6-6.  How convenient.
  • He’s black.  The History Channel has proven that Satan is, too.  Plus, Satan is always called things like the “Dark One.”
  • As we all know from the film Jesus Christ Superstar, Judas was black.  Coincidence?
  • Although the Bible says nothing about the age of the Anti-Christ, isn’t there at least a decent chance he would be about Obama’s age?
  • It is well-known that the Anti-Christ will be a charismatic figure, much like–you guessed it!–Obama.
  • Revelation 13:5-8 says the Anti-Christ will rule for 42 months.  That’s fairly close to one term of Obama’s presidency.
  • There’s even a website that questions whether he’s the Anti-Christ.  If he weren’t, why would someone go to all that trouble?
  • Michael Savage says Obama is “the most evil” President ever.  That’s good enough for me.
  • This passage from Revelation 13 succinctly describes Obama:
    • [1] And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
      [2] And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
      [3] And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.
      [4] And they worshiped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshiped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? Who is able to make war with him?
      [5] And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.
      [6] And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
      [7] And 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.
      [8] And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world

    They might as well put a photo of Obama next to this passage.  Sixty or seventy years ago, a lot of churches thought the Papacy was the Anti-Christ.  Don’t they look silly now?

Those of you with a  conservative bent are probably smiling.  Maybe you’re thinking:  “He can’t be serious, but, you know, all that makes sense.”  If you’re over there on the Left, you may be angry, thinking:  “Another right-wing Nazi making fun of the greatest President ever.”  If you’re really far Left, you’re probably an atheist anyway and just generally offended by anything hinting at religion.  You don’t have faith in anything, except the Government, that is (that’s big G Government, just like big G God).  Oddly enough, atheists now worship a man who has been a Christian his entire adult life.

All this naturally leads to my next line of inquiry.  If we dismiss Obama as Satan or even the Anti-Christ, what if my friends on the Left are correct and he is a great man–the greatest man?  Consider:

  • We know nothing of Jesus’s teen or young adult years.  The same can be said of Obama whose formative years remain shrouded in mystery.
  • Some people think Jesus looked like this:
jesus

The resemblance is uncanny.

  • Jesus was black.  Okay, I have no direct or indirect proof of this, but isn’t it at least possible?  The Bible doesn’t say he wasn’t black.  Don’t you find that suspicious?  I do.  Besides, look at his picture!
  • Like Jesus, Obama has fed the multitudes.  In Obama’s case, it’s with food stamps, but the effect is similar.
  • Obama made Chris Matthews’ leg tingle.  That has to be some kind of miracle.
  • Louis Farrakhan once said of Obama “The Messiah is speaking.”  He never says anything nutty.
  • Speaking of miracles, Obama got a black man elected President of the United States–TWICE!
  • Jesus and Obama are both excellent public speakers.
  • Both were carpenters.  I’m little thin on facts to support this one, but it hasn’t been dis-proven to my satisfaction.
  • We all know that Jesus was born of a virgin mother, but what of Obama?  What do we know of his so-called “father?”  Not much.  Did he even exist?  If not, why not?
  • I’m pretty sure Jesus didn’t have a birth certificate, either.
  • One can persuasively argue that Jesus, too, was a community organizer.  He organized an entire religion!
  • Jesus’s followers were the meek, the downtrodden, the poor in spirit.  Isn’t this exactly what folks on the Right say of Obama’s supporters?

Before you condemn me to the Lake of Fire, I am not suggesting that Obama is the Messiah or even a Messianic figure.  I only ask the questions that others fear.  Not surprisingly, I have no answers.

As with any serious theological debate, there are countervailing arguments.  If he were God or something similar, it’s hard to understand why Rand Paul wasn’t smited during his recent filibuster. If he were Satan or one of his minions, one would think he would try to woo the religious Right instead of constantly enraging them.  We can’t allow such obvious inconsistencies to derail our reckless speculation.

The Bible is thin on details describing Satan.  I’ll admit that Revelation contains an excellent description of the Anti-Christ what with the two heads and whatnot.   Although the Bible makes it clear that Jesus will return, it is equally explicit that we don’t know when or where.  Using those criteria, it is impossible to eliminate Obama.  Thus, we may never know the answer until it’s too late.

If Obama is Satan, then where does that leave Dick Cheney?  If Obama is the Messiah, then why is he a Muslim?  If he is just a man, why do we have all these questions, none of which are subject to adequate answers?  Have I written this under Satan’s spell or by divine inspiration?  Where does Glenn Beck fit in to all of this?  Why does Rachel Maddow look like a dude? We may never know the answers to these and other questions.

So, where are we?  I don’t know.  Maybe Obama is an Ivy League-educated ideologue who surrounds himself with like-minded people–a decent family man with whom a lot of people (myself included) vehemently disagree on some issues.  The Liberal George W. Bush.  NOW, I’m talking crazy.

©thetrivialtroll.wordpress.com 2013