A little over a week ago, CNN.com posted an article, titled, “4 Big Myths of Book of Revelation.” The article takes information from a book with a similar title, Revelations: Visions, Prophecy & Politics in the Book of Revelation. The author, a woman named Elaine Pagels, is described by CNN as “one of the world’s leading biblical scholars.”
However, as the article progresses, it becomes quite apparent that if Ms. Pagels is a biblical scholar, she is not filled with the Holy Spirit, because she does not know truth. And she certainly does not seem to realize that each book in the Bible is supported by scripture in other books; that none stand alone. You cannot take a book like Revelation by itself, and claim to know what it purports.
While I won’t go into all of the incorrect information that the article offers, here is a snippet:
She says the writer of Revelation may have been called John – the book is sometimes called “Book of the Revelation of Saint John the Divine” but he was not the disciple who accompanied Jesus. He was a devout Jew and mystic exiled on the island of Patmos, off the coast of present-day Turkey.
The author was most certainly John, and you have only to read the first verse of Revelation to realize this:
The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show to His bond-servants, the things which must shortly take place; and He sent and communicated it by His angel to His bond-servant John…” (Revelation 1:1)
John’s name is stated elsewhere in Revelation, including Revelation 1:9 and Revelation 22:8.
Here is another portion of the article, just to give you a flavor of the unfortunate misinformation in this woman’s book, and the article itself:
Revelation was an anti-Roman tract and a piece of war propaganda wrapped in one. The message: God would return and destroy the Romans who had destroyed Jerusalem.
“His primary target is Rome,” Pagels says of the book’s author. “He really is deeply angry and grieved at the Jewish war and what happened to his people.”
While I don’t have Ms. Pagels’ book in front of me to be able to read, I don’t get the impression that she has studied the book of Daniel, to see the supporting evidence for Revelation, and the amazing similarities, or the apocalyptic passages in Matthew 24-25, Mark 13 and Luke 21.
In these times, we must know the word of God, to be able to stand against or turn away from the propaganda being distributed by the enemy. What I’m seeing increasingly is that Satan wants people to believe that there is no hell, there will be no apocalypse, and that Jesus is not coming back soon, so they can relax, take a deep breath, and stop worrying about life after death–or a sudden appearance of Jesus Christ in the heavens. Satan is like the Pied Piper, playing beautiful, lilting music, and casting a spell over everyone who would listen, who would turn their faces in his direction, and once they are under his spell, he will lead them over the cliff to their destruction.
I wrote a blog several months ago about a man who had come to me to edit his book. The man was very well-meaning, a self-described Christian, and thought that he had been given inside information about scripture, and the ability to interpret it in such a way as to prove that there really is no hell. If you didn’t read my blog, I didn’t edit his book, but rather gave him Biblical evidence that yes, there really is a hell, and Jesus stated it many, many times. The man never responded to me again.
People are being deceived in increasing numbers, and we who have the Holy Spirit, are able to look upon their deception with clarity and truth, but they have a veil over their eyes because they have not sought out the truth. And unfortunately, the media, even media outlets that are highly respected like CNN, will tend to publish information from people like Ms. Pagels because it draws in readers; it tickles their ears:
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths. (2 Timothy 4:3-4)
Cling to God like a waistband. (Jeremiah 13) Search out His truth. He has given us truth, but He expects us to read it ourselves, and not take someone else’s word for it. With His Holy Spirit within us, He will guide us and reveal the truth to us. And with the Holy Spirit’s help, we will be able to discern the lies of the enemy, and the subtleties with which he is trying to mislead the world.
‘For as the waistband clings to the waist of a man, so I made the whole household of Israel and the whole household of Judah cling to Me,’ declares the Lord, ‘that they might be for Me a people, for renown, for praise, and for glory; but they did not listen.‘ (Jeremiah 13:11)
God asks us to listen, but so does the enemy. God knows we need to do more, and that’s why He tells us to cling to Him, with everything we’ve got. And when we cling to God, we turn our back to the enemy–and that is the only side of us he should ever see.