WND Pushes Islamic Anti-Christ Theory Again

WorldNetDaily returns to the theme of a Muslim anti-Christ:

Meet “The Islamic Antichrist,” a book almost certain to be greeted in the Muslim world with the same enthusiasm as Salman Rushdie’s “The Satanic Verses.” The author, Joel Richardson, is prepared. He has written the book under a pseudonym to protect himself and his family.

In fact, the book is a follow-up to Richardson’s Antichrist: Islam’s Awaited Messiah, which was published last year, and which – as I noted at the time – is just the latest in a long line of fundamentalist tomes in which the Bible supposedly reveals an underlying spiritual dimension to conflicts that involve the USA. Both books carry endorsements from Robert Spencer, who is not known to be particularly religious but who doubtless sees such works as having populist uses [UPDATE: Actually, it turns out that Spencer is a Catholic deacon in a Greek Melkite diocese].

In fact “the Muslim world” has ignored Richardson’s “Islamic Antichrist” views; just recently Richardson was in Turkey to have a chat with none other than Harun Yahya, and he returned home in one piece. WND editor Joseph Farah previously promised riots following the publication of Richardson’s Why We Left Islam – again, there was no reaction from “the Muslim world”, although Ibrahim Hooper made a snarky comment which Farah tried to spin into some kind of incitement to violence.

WND continues:

Richardson believes the key error of many previous prophecy scholars involves the misinterpretation of a prediction by Daniel to Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel describes the rise and fall of empires of the future, leading to the endtimes. Western Christians have viewed one of those empires as Rome, when, claims Richardson, Rome never actually conquered Babylon and was thus disqualified as a possibility.

It had to be another empire that rose and fell and rose again that would lead to rule of this “man of sin,” described in the Bible. That empire, he says, is the Islamic Empire, which did conquer Babylon and, in fact, rules over it even today.

As ever, this is voodoo scholarship. The Book of Daniel belongs to an “Apocalpytic” genre of the second century BCE, and, like the other books of the Bible, it was written with a contemporary audience in mind; it does not contain secrets that make sense only thousands of years later. The various empires that concern the author end with that of his own time and location: the Hellenistic kingdoms of the post-Alexander period. The author is not interested in Rome, and shows no knowledge of any kind of “Islamic Empire” hundreds of years in the future.  Babylon as a city had already lost much of its historical significance by the time the book was composed, and by the Islamic period the town itself was largely a ruin. Babylon was never destroyed in any sort of disaster, despite the promise in Isaiah 13; instead, the site eventually became uninhabited after a millennium of natural decline.

However, Christian fundamentalists have another perspective: for them, the book of Daniel was written hundreds of years earlier, during the Exile, and it contains supernatural divination of the future course of history. Babylon may be a ruin today, but the physical location remains central to the events of the “Last Days”. Thus there was excitement in the 1980s when Saddam Hussein tried to “restore” the archaeological site in his own image, and the apocalpytic Left Behind novels feature the United Nations relocating to the site. Recently, the announcement of US funding to protect the site (a mere $700,000 was quoted) created a hysteria.

Joel Richardson’s blog can be seen here.

 

Richardson Islamic Antichrist

UPDATE: In a follow-up article (also reposted on Richardson’s blog), WND finds a way to bring Obama into the picture:

Obama Antichrist WND Yet Again

Richardson explains:

Under the guise of “fairness” and “equity,” Americans are getting their share of government-coerced wealth redistribution under the leadership of Barack Obama and the Democratic Congress, but it’s only a foreshadowing of what the whole world will witness under the rule of a coming world leader known as “the Beast,” says the author of a controversial new book, “The Islamic Antichrist.”

Author Joel Richardson is quick to point out he does not believe Obama is that future global leader – one many evangelical Christians hold will be satanically inspired. But his messianic appeal and some of his policies do foreshadow the dreaded “man of sin,” says Richardson.

“Obama’s populist message, his appeal to class envy and his overt move toward wealth redistribution find some very clear and dark echoes in the pages of the Bible,” he explains.

Richardson says the Book of Daniel reveals the Antichrist will invade the wealthy nation of Israel specifically to plunder and gain control of its commodities and wealth.

“But what is so interesting is the Bible tells us his reason for seizing this wealth is to give it away to his followers,” says the author. “While slightly more violent than Obama’s tax plan, it is no less populist in its methodology of radical wealth redistribution.”

Once again, Richardson reads into the Bible want he wants to see there. He’s refering to Daniel Chapter 11:

He will be succeeded by a contemptible person who has not been given the honour of royalty. He will invade the kingdom when its people feel secure, and he will seize it through intrigue…When the richest provinces feel secure, he will invade them and will achieve what neither his fathers nor his forefathers did. He will distribute plunder, loot and wealth among his followers. He will plot the overthrow of fortresses— but only for a time…His armed forces will rise up to desecrate the temple fortress and will abolish the daily sacrifice. Then they will set up the abomination that causes desolation.

The person described here is Antiochus IV Epiphanes, a Seleucid king hated in the Jewish tradition for his enforcement of Hellenistic culture and religious forms on Judea. Christian fundamentalists accept this historical context, but see it as some kind of “foreshadowing” of events still to come – which the text itself does not warrant. Of course, one of the main attractions of war historically has been the plunder victors can enjoy; the above cannot seriously be compared to “Obama’s tax plan” unless one is suffering from a paranoid monomania.

And besides, the Bible does not disapprove of plunder being doled out among supporters; here’s Numbers 31:

So Moses said to the people, Arm some of your men to go to war against the Midianites and to carry out the LORD’s vengeance on them…They fought against Midian, as the LORD commanded Moses, and killed every man…The LORD said to Moses, You and Eleazar the priest and the family heads of the community are to count all the people and animals that were captured…Divide the spoils between the soldiers who took part in the battle and the rest of the community…

Back in August 2008, Richardson claimed that a podium used as staging for Obama’s nomination acceptance speech was designed as a copy of the Pergamon Altar, a significant piece of Classical architecture described as the “throne of Satan” in the Book of Revelation. When I pointed out why this was nonsense, he responded congenially but with the complaint that “either you have no sense of humor or you just like to act as though you don’t”.

WND recently ran an article exploring a claim that Jesus stated that Barack Obama is Satan.

31 Responses

  1. But I thought Barack Obama was supposed to be the Anti-Christ! I’m so confused …

  2. Now it all makes sense!

  3. Thanks Richard. More fundamentalist vodoo fodder for ya. The Original Commentary / Article:

    http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=105885

    Blessings, Joel

  4. Note: One of my favorite christophobic secular fundamentalist commentators, Richard Bartholomew has commented on my use of Daniel 11:24 as a reference to the Antichrist. Batholomew comments:

    The person described here is Antiochus IV Epiphanes, a Seleucid king hated in the Jewish tradition for his enforcement of Hellenistic culture and religious forms on Judea. Christian fundamentalists accept this historical context, but see it as some kind of “foreshadowing” of events still to come – which the text itself does not warrant.

    I wanted to simply reply by showing that my opinion is also shared by Jerome (347-420) who in his commentary on Daniel mentions that this position was affirmed by the majority of the early Christians. (except Porphyry of course, Jerome’s theological nemesis in this case.) Commenting on Daniel 11: verse 24, Jerome states:

    Up to this point the historical order has been followed, and there has been no point of controversy between Porphyry and those of our side. But the rest of the text from here on to the end of the book he interprets as applying to the person of the Antiochus who was surnamed Epiphanes, the brother of Seleucus and the son of Antiochus the Great. He reigned in Syria for eleven years after Seleucus, and he seized Judaea, and it is under his reign that the persecution of God’s Law is related, and also the wars of the Maccabees. But those of our persuasion believe all these things are spoken prophetically of the Antichrist who is to arise in the end time. But this factor appears to them as a difficulty for our view, namely the question as to why the prophetic discourse should abruptly cease mention of these great kings and shift from Seleucus to the end of the world. The answer is that in the earlier historical account where mention was made of the Persian kings, only four kings of Persia were presented, following after Cyrus, and (712) many who came in between were simply skipped over, so as to come quickly to Alexander, king of the Macedonians. We hold that it is the practice of Scripture not to relate all details completely, but only to set forth what seems of major importance. Those of our school insist also that since many of the details which we are subsequently to read and explain are appropriate to the person of Antiochus, he is to be regarded as a type of the Antichrist, and those things which happened to him in a preliminary way are to be completely fulfilled in the case of the Antichrist. We hold that it is the habit of Holy |130 Scripture to set forth by means of types the reality of things to come, in conformity with what is said of our Lord and Savior in the Seventy-first [i.e Seventy-second] Psalm, a psalm which is noted at the beginning as being Solomon’s, and yet not all the statements which are made concerning can be applied to Solomon. For certainly he neither endured “together with the sun and before the moon from generation to generation,” nor did he hold sway from sea (p. 566) to sea, or from the River unto the ends of the earth; neither did all the nations serve him, nor did his name endure before the sun; neither were all the tribes of earth blessed in him, nor did all races magnify him. But in a partial way these things were set forth in advance, by shadows as it were, and by a mere symbol of the reality, in the person of Solomon, in order that they might be more perfectly fulfilled in our Lord and Savior. And so, just as the Savior had Solomon and the other saints as types of His advent, so also we should believe that the Antichrist very properly had as a type of himself the utterly wicked king, Antiochus, who persecuted the saints and defiled the Temple. Let us therefore follow along with the explanation point by point, and let us briefly observe in the case of each item what it signifies to those of the other school of thought and what it signifies to those of our school, in accordance with each of the two explanations. Our opponents say that the one who was to “stand up in the place of” Seleucus was his brother, Antiochus Epiphanes. The party in Syria who favored Ptolemy would not at first grant him the kingly honor, but he later secured the rule of Syria by a pretense of clemency. And as Ptolemy fought and laid everything waste, his arms were overcome and broken before the face of Antiochus. Now the word arms implies the idea of strength, and therefore also the host of any army is known as a hand [i.e. manus, "hand," may also signify a "band of armed men"]. And not only does the text say that he conquered Ptolemy by fraud, but also the prince of the covenant he overcame by treachery, that is, Judas Maccabaeus. Or else this is what is referred to, that after he had secured peace with Ptolemy and he had become the prince of the covenant, he afterwards devised a plot against him. Now the Ptolemy meant here was not Epiphanes, who was the fifth Ptolemy to reign in Egypt, but Ptolemy (713) Philometor, the son of Antiochus’ sister, Cleopatra; and so Antiochus was his |131 maternal uncle. And when after Cleopatra’s death Egypt was ruled by Eulaius, the eunuch who was Philometor’s tutor, and by Leneus, and they were attempting to regain Syria, which Antiochus had fraudulently seized, warfare broke out between the boy Ptolemy and his uncle. And when they joined battle between Pelusium and Mt. Casius, Ptolemy’s generals were defeated. But then Antiochus showed leniency towards the boy, and making a pretense of friendship, he went up to Memphis and there received the crown after the Egyptian manner. Declaring that he was looking out for the lad’s interests, he subjected all Egypt to himself with only a small force of men, and he entered into rich and prosperous cities. And so he did things which his father had never done, nor his fathers’ fathers. For none of the kings of Syria had ever laid Egypt waste after this fashion and scattered all their wealth. Moreover he was so shrewd that he even overcame by his deceit the well-laid plans of those who were the boy-king’s generals. This is the line of interpretation which Porphyry followed, pursuing the lead of (A) Sutorius with much redundancy, discoursing of matters which we have summarized within a brief compass. But the scholars of our viewpoint have made a better and correcter interpretation, stating that the deeds are to be performed by the Antichrist at the end of the world. It is he who is destined to arise from a small nation, that is from the Jewish people, and shall be so lowly and despised that kingly honor will not be granted him. But by means of intrigue and deception he shall secure the government and by him shall the arms of the fighting nation of Rome be overcome and broken. He is to effect this result by pretending to (p. 567) be the prince of the covenant, that is, of the Law and Testament of God. And he shall enter into the richest of cities and shall do what his fathers never did, nor his fathers’ fathers. For none of the Jews except the Antichrist has ever ruled over the whole world. And he shall form a design against the firmest resolves of the saints and shall do everything [he wishes] for a time, for as long as God’s will shall have permitted him to do these things.

    • These “foreshadowings” are a nice way of having a cake and eating it.

      Not sure why “christophobic” is warranted – I look at the Bible using historical-critical methods, but I don’t engage in anti-religious polemics or mockery.

  5. All in good fun Richard. Perhaps I should have said “christofundamentalophobic secular fundamentalist.” But because for every insult, including those made in jest, we are to give several compliments, I will say that my emphasis of course was on “favorite”.

    Blessings.

  6. FYI – The Mahdi is not mentioned in the Quran.

    Israel is not wealthy, it realies on money docated by the USA to survive.

  7. Joel, note that Jerome wrote:

    “It is he who is destined to arise from a small nation, that is from the Jewish people, and shall be so lowly and despised that kingly honor will not be granted him. But by means of intrigue and deception he shall secure the government and by him shall the arms of the fighting nation of Rome be overcome and broken. He is to effect this result by pretending to (p. 567) be the prince of the covenant, that is, of the Law and Testament of God. And he shall enter into the richest of cities and shall do what his fathers never did, nor his fathers’ fathers. For none of the Jews except the Antichrist has ever ruled over the whole world.”

    So if the Antichrist comes from the Jewish people as Jerome believed, how can he be Islamic?

  8. [...] meanwhile, has promoted the idea that Obama is either the Anti-Christ or his forerunner; that he recently sent a secret message to Muslims in a speech, promising to extermine the Jews; [...]

  9. So this new and improved ‘Antichrist’ is supposed to be a Muslim and will redistribute our wealth?

    Damn, looks like he’s already here!!! The tax rate on the richest has been going steadily down since the 1950’s, putting around 90% of America’s wealth in the hands of around 3% of the population.

    And just look at the number of Islamofascists on the Federal Reserve, in the US Treasury Dept and on Wall Street.

    OMG!!!!

  10. [...] be revised to fit this religio-nationalistic agenda: WorldNetDaily promotes Joel Richardson’s fantasy of a “Muslim Anti-Christ” emerging (a theory that builds on the rubble of the failed [...]

  11. [...] Of course, this is totally unlike the common Christian fundamentalist assertion that Muslims “really” worship the moon – and the idea of a Christian “Dajjal” can in no way be compared with Richardson’s ramblings about a Muslim anti-Christ. [...]

  12. …just to stir the pot… Read the Old Testament book of Job Chapter 1 verse 5b

    (annoted with Strong’s concordance numbered references)

    “It may be that my sons have sinned (8804), and cursed (8765) God in their hearts . Thus did (8799) Job continually .

    The word “cursed” (strong’s #01288) just coincedentally translates from the Hebrew word – “BARAK”

    There is another interesting word in Hebrew “Oholibama”… but I’ll let you look that one up!

    OK – ‘voodoo’ scholarship! Yes, when you don’t agree, criticize and condemn. Now, that’s scholarly!

    Elitist is the word I would use to describe the article and assumptions in the above post.

    And, anytime a “smart religious guy” uses BCE, don’t trust him. He’s way toooo cool. It’s BC for us Truth seeking traditionalists who exercise our brain and our faith.

    Anyway, it started with Abraham screwing up and setting up the “greatest fight of all times”: Ishmael versus Issac. Now is the climax!

    Respectfully.

    • Yes, when you don’t agree, criticize and condemn. Now, that’s scholarly!

      Always amuses me how fundamentalists appeal to non-judgmental relativism when it suits them.

      • Geeee. Nice ‘comeback’, Richard. From what I have read of you in your blog, you can do better than “tilt at windmills”. By the way, Tilting at windmills is an English idiom which means attacking imaginary enemies, or fighting unwinnable or futile battles. The word “tilt”, in this context, comes from jousting.

        The phrase originated in the novel Don Quixote, by Miguel de Cervantes. The phrase is sometimes used to describe confrontations where adversaries are incorrectly perceived. The phrase is sometimes used to describe courses of action that are based on misinterpreted or misapplied heroic, romantic, or idealistic justifications.

        In the novel, Don Quixote fights windmills that he imagines to be giants. Quixote sees the windmill blades as the giant’s arms.

        Actually, not only is your reply to me Quixote-est, but so is your article.

        You can do better …. (or can you?)

        Also, as inaccurate as your definition of me, and as JUDGEMENTAL and assumptive as you seem to be, I enjoyed reading your blog.

        The new word of the day is ENIGMA.

        Now, back on target: “Engage Brain and emply Faith”. It’s how America was built and became GREAT, and it is the lack of that exercise that is the undoing of America the once-Great.

        Respectfully, your newest “FUNDAMENTALIST, non-judmental relativist” friend.

        M Young

        PS – to quote a popular group “We’re back in the USSR”

  13. The Book of Daniel belongs to an ”Apocalpytic” genre of the second century BCE, and, like the other books of the Bible, it was written with a contemporary audience in mind; it does not contain secrets that make sense only thousands of years later.

    However, Christian fundamentalists have another perspective: for them, the book of Daniel was written hundreds of years earlier, during the Exile, and it contains supernatural divination of the future course of history.

    There is also a line of thinking where more than one meaning/interpretation/application can be placed for a certain passage. For example, the messages to the seven churches can be viewed as contemporary history (a record of the troubles facing the churches at the time of writing), spiritual lesson (how Christians should behave when confronted with similar circumstances) or prophecy (a foreshadowing of what will happen in the end times).

    Foreshadowing does play a major role in the Bible – e.g. Abraham told to sacrifice his son Isaac VS God sacrificng His Son Jesus. As they say, history repeats itself…

    Babylon may be a ruin today, but the physical location remains central to the events of the “Last Days”.

    Hey, now that Saddam and Al Qaeda have been (mostly) booted from Iraq, it has the chance to become that world financial centre with its underutilized oil and all!

    Babylon was never destroyed in any sort of disaster, despite the promise in Isaiah 13; instead, the site eventually became uninhabited after a millennium of natural decline.

    You can take the view of Babylon as referring to the general area, or / as well as an allegory of something with similar traits.

    Isaiah 13:20 goes She will never be inhabited or lived in through all generations. But people have been living on the site of historical Babylon through the ages, most recently Saddam and US troops. You can view thr passage as wrong, not meant to be a prophecy at all, or not applying to the

    Isaiah 13:7 goes See, I will stir up against them the Medes who go on to cause the utter desolation mentioned. Iranian nuke radioactive fallout, anyone? ;P (Verses 21-22’s desert creatures taking over the area; Chernobyl’s breached reactor’s immediate area became a ghost town, but wildlife thrives there.)

  14. [...] Islam’s Awaited Messiah. The book is being heavily promoted by WorldNetDaily; I blogged it here and Richardson (who is personable) has left some comments here and there. The book’s thesis, [...]

  15. [...] have been his most successful. Last year WND Books published a book by Joel Richardson (of “Muslim Antichrist” fame) called Why We Left Islam, which Farah predicted would lead to riots across the Muslim [...]

  16. [...] seeing the Arabic words “In the name of Allah” encoded in the Book of Revelation or Joel Richardson seeing the rise of Islam predicted in the Book of [...]

  17. [...] More on the “Islamic Anti-Christ” here. [...]

  18. [...] it appears that he also wants to assimilate Joel Richardson’s theory (heavily promoted by WND’s Joseph Farah) that the Bible predicts a Muslim Anti-Christ; another part of his [...]

  19. This former Muslim appears to be more knowledgeable than arrogant, bible-illiterate, bible prophecy skeptics; who appear to have more in common with an anti-christ mindset, because they typically deny the deity of Christ and the authority of God’s word (the bible).

    Watch This!
    http://www.cross.tv/25008

  20. [...] world as the locus of Satan’s ultimate designs, and the headline is just the latest in a long line of puffs for Joel Richardson, author of  The Islamic Antichrist: The Shocking Truth about the [...]

  21. maybe some Christians dont want to accept they are wrong.

  22. [...] I discussed Richardson’s ludicrous theory – which comes with an endorsement from Robert Spencer – here. [...]

  23. [...] I discussed Richardson’s ludicrous theory – which comes with an endorsement from Robert Spencer – here. [...]

  24. [...] is a long-time associate of Shoebat (they both promote the idea of a coming “Islamic Anti-Christ”, and Shoebat contributed to Richardson’s Why We Left Islam book), and he gives some more [...]

  25. [...] – whose book on how the Bible predicts an imminent Muslim anti-Christ comes with an endorsement from Spencer –  later complained [...]

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