by Thomas Bass | Les Feldick
Let’s continue in Revelation Chapter 6. We left off in verse 2. Christ has taken the scroll from God the Father. And that scroll includes the mortgage that Satan is holding over the planet as a result of the curse. And the curse is going to be lifted by the time all of this is over. As we see the first seal of this mortgage removed, it’s the appearance of a white horse. There are many who feel that, because it is a white horse, it has to be Christ. But I’m convinced it is the false christ, because from Genesis Chapter 3, just as soon as man entered the scene, Satan came in as the master counterfeiter.
A master counterfeiter is so like the original, you have to be an expert to tell the difference. Well, Satan has done it. And he has been the counterfeiter from day one. And the human race has been falling over it time after time. That’s why I always like to give the illustration that when people come into the employment of our Treasury Department to work, for several months they do absolutely nothing but look at legitimate American Bills. They don’t look at counterfeits; they look at the legitimate, because after they have studied them for a long time, if they see one little mark that isn’t in an original, they can recognize it as counterfeit. And that is the way we have to study the Scriptures. We just have to be so aware of what the Book says, lest a counterfeiter comes in and we do not recognize him as a false teacher.
The white horse here is a counterfeit. Let’s take a look at the real one over in Revelation Chapter 19. The white horse in Revelation Chapter 6 verse 2 is the very first seal that will open the Tribulation of seven years. In Chapter 19, the seven years have run their course, and now we have the appearance of the genuine article.
“And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called (watch these as they are all capitalized) Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.”
“And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood (when we get to this, I’ll show you that it’s not His Blood that’s indicated, but the blood of His victims as He comes in wrath and vexation): and his name is called The Word of God.” And where else is He called the Word? In John’s Gospel Chapter 1:
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
In Revelation 19, Christ is on the white horse for His Second Coming. Verse 14.
“And the armies (and we are included in this army)which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.”
Throughout Scripture, who wears the white linen? Saints do (not angels). Go back with me to the Book of Matthew, Chapter 25. I’ve always said that all prophecy is directed to the Nation of Israel. No prophecy indicates the Church, as such. Not a word is breathed throughout the Old Testament about this Church Age comprised of Gentile believers. Not a word! However, the Old Testament prophets understood that there was “something” between His first advent and His coming in power and glory.
I can remember when I was younger, hearing Bible teachers picture this “something” as approaching the Rocky Mountains from east. There are two distinct mountain ranges with a valley between them. From a distance you can see the ranges, but you cannot see the valley between them. The peaks look like one range of mountains. But as you come to the first range, you suddenly realize that some of those you were seeing from the distance were still maybe a hundred miles away.
That’s the way the Old Testament prophets many times viewed these two advents. They saw them as one. And that’s why I used to put it on the board in the timeline. According to prophecy, it would just go beyond the Cross and that was supposed to be the end of prophecy, and Israel would have her King and and Kingdom, and we would go into the Kingdom Age. But it didn’t end up that way because Israel rejected it and, unknown to the Old Testament writers, we’ve now had that whole period of time opened up (the valley) and parenthesized, which we call the Church Age. But here’s what I like to point out. This shocks a lot of people until they see it: that even in the four Gospels there’s never a single hint God is going to turn to the Gentiles and call out a people for His Name. Jesus was so meticulously careful not to betray that. He knew. Don’t think He didn’t know the end from the beginning. But see, he never revealed anything that was kept hidden in the mind of God.
We will be coming to that sometime down the road. And I’ll show it so explicitly again, as we have in the past that God reveals things according to His time frame and not until. It’s interesting that there would be the armies of heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean at His Second Coming. Here in Matthew 25, Jesus is speaking from the pre-Church situation, and He is not going to betray the secret in the mind of God. Watch His language in verse 31. I want you to see this carefully. I’m not saying this lightly:
“When the Son of man shall come in his glory (what did Revelation say? He’s coming on that white horse, in righteousness; His name will be Faithful and True. King of kings and Lord of lords. Now when that happens), and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:”
Now I want you to be a Bible student. What am I always telling you to do? Constantly ask yourself a question. According to Matthew, who will be coming with Him? Angels. Does it mention anything about saints wearing linen white and clean? Do you see what I’m driving at? He doesn’t betray that here. It’s not time. And so He doesn’t include the Church here. Only the angels. Now, had He said,“and all the holy angels and the saints clothed in fine white linen,” then He would have betrayed the secret that was to have been kept in the mind of God until revealed to the Apostle Paul some time later. But He doesn’t. He’s the perfect sinless, errorless Son of God. And He said that which was appropriate to say.
Let’s come back to Revelation again. In Chapter 6, we don’t have any of the descriptions that are equal to Revelation 19, so this has to be the counterfeit. The counterfeit christ is the Anti-christ. As we come into this seven-year period of Tribulation, 3 1/2 years and 3 1/2 years, we are going to find ourselves confronted with an unholy trinity all through the Book of Revelation. Satan is the counterfeit of the Father. The counterfeit of the Son will be the Anti-christ. And the counterfeit of the Holy Spirit and His works will be what we refer to in the Book of Revelation as the false prophet. I think Revelation Chapter 19 is the only place where he is named. This is at the end of the Tribulation, and all the horrible judgments have all ready happened. And it’s time for the King and the Kingdom to come on the scene.
“And the beast (Anti-christ) was taken, and with him the false prophet (here he is named. The rest of the time he’s referred to as a personality. Revelation 13 refers to him as the lamb with two horns)that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.”
They go into the lake of fire without benefit of the Great White Throne Judgment. They are the very first ones to inhabit the eternal doom of the wicked, the lake of fire. All the other lost are going to stand before the Great White Throne and at least have their moment of time, and I guess they can put up an argument if they feel like it. Because Jesus said in that day, and He was referring to the Great White Throne, they will say unto Me: “But Lord, didn’t we cast out demons in your name?” And what’s His answer going to be? “Depart from me I never knew you.” So there will be a time of rebuttal or whatever you want to call it. But not for the false prophet and Anti-christ. These two humans who are part of this unholy trinity will go to their doom.
Satan is going to go there as well, but he will join them sometime later. As we come through the Book of Revelation, be aware that Satan and the Anti-christ and the false prophet are working in unison, much like the Holy Trinity. The Holy Spirit today in the Age of Grace points people to God, the Son. This is the work of the Holy Spirit, to point lost people to the Son. For we believers, it’s the Holy Spirit’s work to teach and encourage and reprove us, so that we might in turn bring honor and glory to the Son. Now the false prophet is going to do the same thing during the Tribulation. He is going to cause people to worship the Anti-christ. Consequently, he fulfills a counterfeit role of the Holy Spirit. Both of these will be under the power of Satan. Now to Revelation Chapter 6. Once again, we see in verse 2 the white horse:
“…and he that sat on him had a bow;…”
“Bow” is hard to track down since it can be pronounced and mean different things. You can’t really define this word from the Greek as to what is implied, so I’ll have to follow in the tracks of men I’ve read, that most agree it’s the bow that would shoot arrows. But, from our study of the Anti-christ out of Daniel, I trust I made it clear that Anti-christ is not coming in using power of military might or by fighting wars. How is he going to come in? Peaceably and with flattery. He is going to be a political maneuverer – a charismatic type individual. He doesn’t have to use his ammunition, but may come with the threat of power behind him which he will have. Even Western Europe still has NATO. But he doesn’t actually have the military power yet. He hasn’t come that far along.
“…and a crown was given unto him:…”
The world is going to recognize him as their leader. Remember, he will come up out of the Common Market of Europe. The European Community (EC). There will be 10 nations in all and he will come up and usurp the power. Look at Matthew 24. It’s the perfect parallel of Revelation Chapter 6. So always compare the two. Note that Matthew 24 is all prophecy about the Tribulation. There is no Church Age doctrine in here whatsoever. This is strictly Tribulation ground.
“And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple. And Jesus said unto them, `See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, `There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.’”
Jesus was looking toward the siege of the Roman armies under Titus. And that is just what the armies did. Once they got inside the city wall they devastated the city. Josephus recorded (and it’s not Scripture), that the Roman soldiers had heard it rumored that between the very building stones of Herod’s Temple, there was a lot of gold and other kinds of wealth. And soldiers being soldiers, tore it down stone by stone looking for that supposedly hidden wealth. But whatever the reason, we know that the Temple was destroyed just as Jesus said it would be. This Temple could not be destroyed by fire like King Nebuchadnezzar did to Solomon’s Temple, but remember Solomon’s Temple was built from the beautiful cedars of Lebanon. So it burned to a crisp. But Herod’s Temple was predominately of stone and of course the precious gold and silver, etc. But anyway it was all destroyed except that little segment of the wall that is now known as the Wailing Wall.
“And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately (just the Twelve), saying, `Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming(remember in I Corinthians 1:22, the Jew requires a sign. They wanted to know when His Kingdom would be set up), and of the end of the world?’”
Jesus now begins to lay out the events of the seven years. It begins from the appearance of the white horse in Revelation 6 – the Man of Sin, the counterfeit christ, the Anti-christ.
“And Jesus answered and said unto them, `Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, `I am Christ;…’”
Do you see that? That’s the white horse. He’s will come on the scene and practically convince the world that he is Christ. He’s what the world is looking for. And we are already seeing people like that. Sigma Moon from Korea, about 15 years ago, tried to tell the world that he was the Christ. And we’ve had others, and we will have still more. But it’s going to be culminated by the real counterfeiter, the real Anti-christ, and he’s going to convince the world that he is the Christ and he shall deceive many. Going back to Revelation, stop at I John, Chapter 2 for a moment. This is the same writer who wrote the Book of Revelation. Now let’s drop down to verse 18. And here again, as I have stressed before, is the one place where this Man of Sin is actually called the Anti-christ.
I John 2:18
“Little children, it is the last time (these writers of Scriptures had no idea there was going to be 1900 + years before this would happen. They thought it would be coming in a relatively short time): and as ye have heard that antichrist (here John is speaking of the real Anti-christ) shall come, even now are there many antichrists;…”
Of course there are. But they can’t hold a candle to the one that is coming. Now let’s go back to Revelation Chapter 6. So we see this Man of Sin comes on the scene and he begins to conquer and overtake nations. He is setting up his power base.
“… and he went forth conquering, and to conquer. And when he had opened the second seal,…”
Remember these seals are on that mortgage, that scroll. He signs the seven-year treaty with the Nation of Israel as we saw back in Daniel. The next event which may be within the first month or so after the seven years have begun, is another horse. This one is red.
“And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon (the red horse)to take peace from the earth (when you have the absence of peace, what do you have? War. I mean a real one. So this power entity, this rider of the red horse is going to bring war on the earth), and that they should kill one another:” I want you to underline those last three words, because I think this indicates what I’m going to show is the rider of the red horse. We won’t have time to take it all the way through during this lesson. But here we have the rider of the red horse, and his battle ground is going to be epitomized by not killing the enemy, but what are they going to do? They are going to kill each other. To whet your appetite, and as you are turning to Ezekiel, I want you to be thinking what great power on earth is associated with the color red? Russia. For over twenty years I’ve been teaching that I think the rider of the red horse will be the Russian invasion of Israel. Just as in Ezekiel 38 and 39. So in Chapter 38, and again, Ezekiel begins as he does so many times:
“And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, `Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him,”
Most Bible scholars are convinced that Gog and Magog, Meshech and Tubal are Russia and her satellite nations. I have told my classes for quite some time not to believe for a minute that the Russian bear is dead. The Russian bear is alive and well. They may be crimped a little economically, and be a little cold and hungry, but the Russian army is setting there east of the Ural Mountains just as intact as it has ever been. I read again in one of the major news magazines recently, that Russia has not cut one person from their staff of espionage. They are just as busy with their spying activity as they have always been. They have not slowed down the production of any of their war materials. They recently sent another rocket into space. How are they doing all of this if they are destitute and broke? Listen, they are just as alive as can be. And we know they have their problems, but one day soon the Communist will come back in and take over and Russia will be right back on track.