The Bible and 1917: The Beginning of the Last Days

Reading from the Old Testament, Holy Gospels, Acts, Epistles and Revelation, our priests' and bishops' sermons, and commentary by the Church Fathers. All Forum Rules apply.

Moderators: Maria, phpBB2 - Administrators

Post Reply
User avatar
Maria
Archon
Posts: 8428
Joined: Sat 12 June 2004 12:39 am
Faith: True Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: GOC
Location: USA

The Bible and 1917: The Beginning of the Last Days

Post by Maria »

1917: The Beginning of the Last Days

Gregor Isiopili

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

II Thessalonians 2:6-9:
"And now ye know that which restraineth, to the end that he may be revealed in his own season. For the mystery of lawlessness doth already work: only there is one that restraineth now, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall be revealed the lawless one, whom the Lord Jesus shall slay with the breath of His mouth, and bring to nought by the manifestation of His coming: even he whose coming is according to the working of Satan."

And who is the "one who now restraineth"?

The Roman Empire restraineth according to St John Chrysostom:
"So indeed he also says here: 'Only there is one that restraineth now, until he be taken out of the way,' that is, when the Roman empire is taken out of the way, then he shall come. And naturally. For as long as the fear of this empire lasts, no one will willingly exalt himself, but when that is dissolved, he will attack the anarchy, and endeavor to seize upon the government both of man and of God."

After the fall of Constantinople (New Rome and the capital of the Byzantine/Roman Empire) in 1453; Moscow became the 3rd and final Rome and the Russian Empire the heir of the Byzantine Empire.

Elder Philoteus in 1510 informed the Muscovite Tsar Basil III (1505-1533) of his vision based on the Book of Daniel that the Russian tsardom was to be the final earthly reign of God’s People: "Two Romes have fallen. The third stands. And there will not be a fourth. No one will replace your Christian Tsardom!"

St. John of Kronsdat prophesied in 1905:
"Russia, if you fall away from your faith, as many of the intellectual class have already fallen away, you will no longer be Russia, or Holy Russia. And if there will be no repentance in the Russian people - then the end of the world is near. God will take your pious Tsar and will send a whip in the person of impious, cruel, self-appointed rulers, who will inundate the whole earth with blood and tears."

Father Nektarios Serfes writes on the source of the authority of an Orthodox Tsar:
"An Orthodox monarch receives his authority from God, but by what means and in what manner does it come to him? Authority to govern in the Name of God and perform the highest earthly ministry descends upon a Tsar in the Sacrament of Anointing, at the time of his coronation. After the crowning he is told that "this visible and material adornment of thy head is to thee a manifest sign that the King of Glory, Christ, invisibly crowneth thee". The Anointing takes place after the reading of the Gospel in the Divine Liturgy. The chief hierarch anoints the Tsar with Holy Chrism on the brow, the eyes, nostrils, lips, ears, breast, and hands, saying each time: "The Seal of the Gift of the Holy Spirit." Therefore, Nicholas II received his authority through a Sacrament. The Holy Spirit was upon him. "By rejecting the Tsar, the people blasphemed the Sacrament and trampled upon the grace of God"

In 1917 the Russian revolution erupted in St. Petersburg. By 1918 the God-Annointed Tsar Nicholas II and his family were dead-martyred by the Bolsheviks. Thus the 3rd and final Rome fell, marking the end of the Roman Empire and ushering in the begining of the final period in history. He "who restraineth" was now "taken out of the way".

Fr. Seraphim Rose writes:
"That which restraineth the appearance in the world of the Antichrist, the man of lawlessness and anarchy, the last and most powerful enemy of Christ and His Church, is-in the teaching of St. John Chrysostom and others Fathers of the Church -lawful authority, as represented and symbolized by the Roman Empire. This idea was incarnated supremely in the Christian Empire: first in Byzantium, when Constantinople was the Second Rome, and then in the Orthodox Russian Empire, when Moscow was the Third Rome. In 1917 the “Constantinian Age” came to an end, the Orthodox Empire was overthrown – and the world, beginning with Moscow, has been thrown into an age of lawlessness and atheism (and in Christian life, of apostasy) such as has not yet been seen.Tsar Nicholas II was the last representative of this ideal of lawful Christian authority, and the age of lawlessness began appropriately with his murder. For Orthodox Christians, however, the new age begins with a martyr: a witness to the Orthodox Church, faithful to the end to his Church and his sacred calling."

St. John Maximovitch writes:
"Before the advent of Antichrist, there is already being prepared in the world the possibility of his appearance: The mystery of iniquity doth already work (II Thes. 2:7). The forces preparing for his appearance fight above all against the lawful Imperial authority…. St. John Chrysostom explains that the 'withholding one' is the lawful pious authority: such an authority fights with evil. For this reason the 'mystery,' already at work in the world, fights with this authority; it desires a lawless authority. When the 'mystery' decisively achieves that authority, nothing will any longer hinder the appearance of Antichrist."

And St. Theophan the Recluse further relates:
"he (the Anti-Christ) will not appear as long as royal authority remains in force. It will not allow him to develop, it will hinder his acting in his own spirit. This, then, is the "one who holds back" (II Thess. 2:7). But when royal authority falls, and the people everywhere institute self-government (republics, democracies), then there will be room for the Antichrist to act. It will not be hard for Satan to prepare voices in favor of renouncing Christ, as experience showed during the French revolution. There will be no one to pronounce an authoritative veto. And so when such regimes, suitable for disclosing the Antichrist's aspirations are instituted everywhere, then the Antichrist will appear."

Archimandrite Constantine of Jordanville offers this opinion:
"The fall of Russia signalled a beginning to the pre-Antichrist epoch through which we are currently living. This cataclysm did away with the 'restraining power' in the world, setting Satan free from his temporary ('thousand-year', as the Scriptures allegorically call it) bondage."

With the restraining power of the Roman Empire removed a terrible pre-Antichrist period of persecution began against the Holy Orthodox Church. An unknown number of millions upon millions of Martyrs gave their lives for Christ following the downfall of the Russian Empire primarily under communism. This was the bloodiest period in all of Church history.

How are we to understand this 'authority' of the Antichrist and his forerunner of Communism?

St. Paul in Romans states:
"Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God's wrath on the wrongdoer."
But does this apply to the 'authority' of the Antichrist and his forerunners of various Communist governments?

St. Isidore of Pelusium (5th century) wrote:
“If some evildoer unlawfully seizes power, we do not say that he is established by God, but we say that he is permitted, either in order to spit out all his craftiness, or in order to chasten those for whom cruelty is necessary, as the king of Babylon chastened the Jews."

In the book of Revelations we read that:
"The dragon gave the beast his power and his throne and great authority."

The Holy Patriarch St. Tikhon anathamatized the Soviet government as related by the Russian Church Council of 1917-18:
"“The Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia in his epistle to the beloved in the Lord archpastors, pastors and all faithful children of the Orthodox Church of Christ has drawn the spiritual sword against the outcasts of the human race – the Bolsheviks, and anathematised them. The head of the Russian Orthodox Church adjures all her faithful children not to enter into any communion with these outcasts. For their satanic deeds they are cursed in this life and in the life to come. Orthodox! His Holiness the Patriarch has been given the right to bind and to loose according to the word of the Saviour…Do not destroy your souls, cease communion with the servants of Satan – the Bolsheviks. Parents, if your children are Bolsheviks, demand authoritatively that they renounce their errors, that they bring forth repentance for their eternal sin, and if they do not obey you, renounce them. Wives, if your husbands are Bolsheviks and stubbornly continue to serve Satan, leave your husbands, save yourselves and your children from the soul-destroying infection. An Orthodox Christian cannot have communion with the servants of the devil…Repent, and with burning prayer call for help from the Lord of Hosts and thrust away from yourselves ‘the hand of strangers’ – the age-old enemies of the Christian faith, who have declared themselves in self-appointed fashion ‘the people’s power’…If you do not obey the Church, you will not be her sons, but participants in the cruel and satanic deeds wrought by the open and secret enemies of Christian truth…Dare! Do not delay! Do not destroy your soul and hand it over to the devil and his stooges.”

And finally from a 1960's document of the Russian Orthodox Catacomb Church:
“How should one look on the Soviet authority, following the Apostolic teaching on authorities [Rom. 13]? In accordance with the Apostolic teaching which we have set forth, one must acknowledge that the Soviet authority is not an authority. It is an anti-authority. It is not an authority because it is not established by God, but insolently created by an aggregation of the evil actions of men, and it is consolidated and supported by these actions. If the evil actions weaken, the Soviet authority, representing a condensation of evil, likewise weakens...This authority consolidates itself in order to destroy all religions, simply to eradicate faith in God. Its essence is warfare with God, because its root is from satan. The Soviet authority is not authority, because by its nature it cannot fulfill the law, for the essence of its life is evil.

“It may be said that the Soviet authority, in condemning various crimes of men, can still be considered an authority. We do not say that a ruling authority is totally lacking. We only affirm that it is an anti-authority. One must know that the affirmation of real power is bound up with certain actions of men, to whom the instinct of preservation is natural. And they must take into consideration the laws of morality which have been inherent in mankind from ages past. But in essence this authority systematically commits murder physically and spiritually. In reality a hostile power acts, which is called Soviet authority. The enemy strives by cunning to compel humanity to acknowledge this power as an authority. But the Apostolic teaching on authority is inapplicable to it, just as evil is inapplicable to God and the good, because evil is outside God; but the enemies with hypocrisy can take refuge in the well-known saying that everything is from God.

“This Soviet anti-authority is precisely the collective Antichrist, warfare against God...”

It is important to note that the Authority of the Tsar was established by God. The authority of the Antichrist and his forerunners are allowed by God.

What has occurred since 1917 both in the 'free' west and in communist lands may be best be summed up in the words of Archbishop Averky of Jordanville who passed away in 1976:

"But the "ministers of Satan," or, which is the same thing, the servants of the coming Antichrist, make use of this spiritual blindness of the majority of modern people and stubbornly and insistently do their work with genuinely satanic energy. With special efforts and with all available means, with the aid of all the resources under their control, they bind forcibly to themselves adepts who are wittingly or unwittingly, willingly, or unwillingly, cooperating with them in creating in the world circumstances and conditions appropriate for the very near appearance of the Antichrist as the ruler of the whole world and the master of all mankind.

How is this being done?

Here is how! Through schools, the press, and spoken propaganda they are spreading skepticism and atheism among people, in every way drawing them away from faith in Christ and from the true Church, even replacing, where this is necessary and useful for them, the true Church with just the appearance of it, i.e. a "pseudo-church." They are undermining all the supports of moral living, ridiculing and denying the concepts of conscience, of good and evil. They are systematically instilling and encouraging dissipation, especially among the younger generation; they are destroying the family by permitting easy divorces and legalizing abortions; they are declaring unnatural sexual tendencies, including even homosexuality, legal and permissible; they are spreading sorts of pornography. Under the pretext of "freedom" and "democracy" they are weakening firm governments everywhere where they are founded on the strong and healthy bases of faith and morality, undermining their authority by spreading all sorts of slander and insinuations. They are organizing direct or at least covert persecution of the faith and the Church, harassing and oppressing believers, who at times are subjected to very cruel persecution. They are encouraging the growth of crime by neither condemning nor punishing criminals. Finally, they are trying to undermine the foundations even of people's material welfare and prosperity by creating disruptions in the national economies, inflation and depression, in order to bring people to total despair and a condition of general anarchy, etc., etc.

But for what reason are they doing all this?

So that the people brought to hopeless despair will seize on the Antichrist when he appears as their saviour from all these ills and troubles, will worship him and entrust him with the fullness of power over all mankind as a dictator, an unchecked commander and master, with power to direct their life and death and their very souls.
In what way are the servants of Antichrist attaining their goals?

By taking into their own hands, into their complete and exclusive possession the chief shapers of modern human life and of that which is spreading its influence everywhere and is capable of holding people firmly — by seizing governmental power, capital, and the press in all countries.

How are we to relate to this apostasy of the modern world?

St Ignatius Brianchaninov exclaims:
"Apostasy is permitted by God-do not attempt to stop it with your powerless hand. Flee from it yourself, protect yourself from it; that is enough for you to do. Learn to know the spirit of the age, study it, so whenever possible you will be able to avoid its influence...Only God's special mercy is able to stop this all-destroying moral epidemic, to stop it for a while, because it is necessary that everything foretold by the Scriptures happen. Judging by the spirit of the times and the intellectual ferment one must suppose that the structure of the Church, which has been shaking for some time, will fall quickly and horribly. There is no one to stop and oppose it. The measures undertaken to support it are borrowed and hasten its fall, rather than stopping it. There is no one who can be expected to restore Christianity! The vessels of the Holy Spirit have finally dried up everywhere, even in the monasteries, those treasures of piety and grace...The salt has lost its savor. In the chief pastors of the Church there remains only a weak, dim, inconsistent and incorrect understanding according to the "letter" which kills the spiritual life in Christian society and destroys Christianity, which is an action, not a letter. It is distressing to see to whom the sheep of Christ have been entrusted, to whom their direction and salvation have been committed. But this has been permitted by God...God's merciful patience delays and postpones the decisive disintegration for the small remnant of those being saved, while those who are decaying or have decayed attain the fullness of their corruption. Those who are being saved must understand this and make use of the time given them for salvation. May the merciful Lord shield the remnant of those who believe in Him! But, this remnant is meager and is becoming more and more so...Let him who is being saved save his soul"

And finally a word from St. Ignatius Brianchaninov on the person of the Antichrist:

"Antichrist will call himself a preacher and restorer of true knowledge of God: those who do not understand Christianity will see in him a representative and champion of true religion and will join themselves to him. Antichrist will appear to be gentle, merciful, full of love and of all virtues: he will be recognized as such and obeyed on account of his most exalted virtues by those who recognize fallen human nature as the truth... Antichrist will offer to mankind the organization of the highest earthly well-being and prosperity, he will offer honors, wealth, majesty, and bodily comforts and pleasures: those who seek earthly things will accept the Antichrist and call him their master. Antichrist will reveal before mankind a shameful display of striking miracles similar to the cunning presentation of the theater...he will instill fear by the terrors and wonders of his miracles, and by them satisfy vanity and human pride, he will satisfy carnal sophistry and superstition, and will confuse human learning: all men who are guided by the light of their fallen nature and who are foreign to guidance by the Light of God will be attracted to obey the deceiver." The Antichrist will be accepted with excitement by apostates from Christianity, but is deserving of deep attention and mourning, as the Holy Fathers note, that the chosen themselves will be uncertain about the person of the Antichrist, so skillfully will he be able to conceal from external observation the Satanic evil roots in him. "The Antichrist's opponents will be considered trouble-makers and enemies of the general welfare and good order, they will be subjected to both concealed and open persecution, torture, and execution." All who refuse to worship the Antichrist will fall into the most painful and difficult position: "their small number will seem insignificant before all mankind, and their opinion will be thought especially feeble, subject to general contempt, hatred slander, and oppression; violent death will be their lot."

St Lavrenty of Chernigov (1950) states concerning the Jesus Prayer:
"But for the sake of His chosen, the Lord will shorten those days. In those days there will still be strong warriors, Orthodox pillars, who will be under the powerful influence of the Jesus Prayer. The Lord will cover them with His almighty grace, and they will not see those false signs which will be prepared for all people [by the Antichrist].

Revelations 20: 9-10:
"And fire came down out of the Heaven from God and devoured them. And the devil, the one leading them astray, was cast into the lake of the fire and the brimstone, where are also the beast and the false prophet; and they shall be tortured day and night to the ages of the ages.

Revelations 22: 14, 17, 20:
"Happy are the ones doing His Commandments, in order that their authority shall be over the tree of life...And the one thirsting, let him come; and the one wishing, let him take the water of life freely..."
"Amen; yes, come Lord Jesus"

Since writings, images, and photos from facebook have a tendency to disappear, I have copied the above from:
https://www.facebook.com/notes/gregor-i ... 9578269859
Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner.
Matthew
Protoposter
Posts: 1812
Joined: Sat 21 January 2012 5:04 am

Re: The Bible and 1917: The Beginning of the Last Days

Post by Matthew »

Yes, I agree that Christian emperors as successors of "Christian Roman Emperors" [Old Rome, Constantinople, and finally the Third Rome--Moscow] kept the fall of mankind at bay. Now that is gone.
User avatar
Barbara
Protoposter
Posts: 3808
Joined: Sat 29 September 2012 10:03 pm

Re: The Bible and 1917: The Beginning of the Last Days

Post by Barbara »

Good rundown on what most of us know to a large degree, but always benefit from a refresher !
Very inspiring.

Who is Gregor Isiopili ? A Greek ?

And why do things disappear on facebook ?
User avatar
Maria
Archon
Posts: 8428
Joined: Sat 12 June 2004 12:39 am
Faith: True Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: GOC
Location: USA

Re: The Bible and 1917: The Beginning of the Last Days

Post by Maria »

Barbara wrote:Good rundown on what most of us know to a large degree, but always benefit from a refresher !
Very inspiring.

Who is Gregor Isiopili ? A Greek ?

And why do things disappear on facebook ?
Facebook can delete any content not deemed appropriate,
and facebook users can always delete or edit content.

If a facebook user copies a picture and were to repost it, the original person who posted that image can delete it or facebook can remove it.
Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner.
User avatar
Barbara
Protoposter
Posts: 3808
Joined: Sat 29 September 2012 10:03 pm

Re: The Bible and 1917: The Beginning of the Last Days

Post by Barbara »

Thanks for the explanation.

But only if the person copied it onto THEIR facebook page, right, could it be deleted by either the original poster or by facebook customer service ?

It is not possible to delete it from, let's say, here, should someone post a facebook picture here. Right ?
Or is it possible to reach in from beyond our border, so to speak, and erase it ?
Post Reply