By Elizabeth Prata
I saw an article with an interesting topic on Facebook and I looked it up to see if it was real. It is real. Here is the interesting news. This article is from The Vatican, and since it involves the papacy, I take it to be credible, since they are reporting on themselves. The religion site is being built in United Arab Emirates, known as UAE.
"The Abrahamic Family House, which encloses a synagogue, a church and a mosque in a single complex, and which is scheduled to be inaugurated in 2022, is 20 percent complete, the Higher Committee of Human Fraternity (HCHF) said in a statement on Tuesday. ... Besides the 3 places of worship, the site includes a cultural center that aims to encourage people to exemplify human fraternity and solidarity within a community that cherishes the values of mutual respect and peaceful coexistence, while the unique character of each faith is preserved."
Each faith, meaning Judaism, Christianity (The Roman Catholic version of false Christianity) and Islam. Note that it is illegal for any building in the UAE to display a cross, therefore the church on this site will be devoid of one. It is illegal in UAE to convert from Islam to any other religion, so it remains to be seen how much ‘tolerance’ will be involved.
If you go to the website for this project, which The Vatican reports is 20% finished and will open within a year, you see a photo of how it will look and the architecture is quite beautiful.
The website for the project is called For Human Fraternity.
Other websites are calling it the center for One World Faith. The Times of Israel gives their take on the project, with a photo of the progress in construction. It’s from this past June 2021. This Chinese missionary site has another take on the project.
Interesting. I had not know about these ‘Abraham Accords’ which was the covenant that forms the basis for the building project, with other projects to come. The accords marked the first public normalization of relations between an Arab country and Israel since that of Egypt in 1979 and Jordan in 1994, says Wikipedia. The progress of this building site is pretty amazing, because the Accords were only signed in September 2020, one year ago.
Let’s turn to past history and future prophecy for a moment
There is a difficult prophetic passage in Revelation, some say the most difficult. Revelation 17:9-11 says-
“Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits. There are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, and the other has not yet come. And when he comes, he must continue a short time. The beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition.” (Revelation 17:9-11)
Oh, boy, where do you start? OK, in the first phrase, it says ‘here is wisdom.’ To me, that means that the interpretation won’t be easy or obvious. It will take deeper study, but that it will be revealed to the one who seeks wisdom. James 1:5 makes that promise.
Next, “Mountains”. In biblical symbolism, mountains usually represent kingdoms or strong, powerful governments. When it says THE mountain, like in Isaiah 2:2-4, it means Jesus’ government. “It shall come to pass in the last days that the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains.”
“The seven” past kingdoms (empires) are generally accepted to be Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Greece, Media-Persia and Rome past and/or Rome to come, or perhaps someone else. “The eighth” seems to be the antichrist which is part of the seventh.
Remember that in Daniel’s interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s statue of the kingdoms (Daniel 2:31-35), it was gold at the head, silver at the chest and arms, bronze torso and thighs, legs of iron and feet of a mixture of clay and iron. A side note, you notice two things of the statue’s metals: as they progress from head to toe, the metals become less expensive. Gold mentioned at the head is the most precious metal, iron the least. Clay is worth nothing at all. But they also become stronger. Gold is the softest metal but iron is strongest.
The legs of iron are generally thought to be the split Roman empire. The Romans split their empire in 330AD when they allowed Constantinople (now Istanbul- it’s in Turkey) to become a sister capital, and the kingdom was split east and west. (The feet of iron and clay are thought to the coming Tribulation kingdom.) So let’s look at Constantinople.
Now known as Istanbul, it is located in Turkey and is its largest city. Wikipedia says Istanbul has served as the capital of the Roman Empire (330–395), the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire (395–1204 and 1261–1453), the Latin Empire (1204–1261), and the Ottoman Empire (1453–1922). That’s a lot of empires! It was also chosen as a joint European Capital of Culture for 2010-2011, and as such organized cultural events with a strong European dimension. Yet…Istanbul is not European, and despite its long desire to align with the west, that desire has been thwarted. Turkey is considered a “candidate country” but is not absorbed into the European Union.
Though Turkey was one of the first countries to become a member of the Council of Europe in 1949, a predecessor to the EU, and is now an associate member of the EU, it has been denied full membership ever since its application in 1987. It seems that the two legs of the Roman empire are still split, though it is part of the body of historically precedent empires and loosely connected to the west, is not the west.
The Turks figure into end time prophecy as the nation who aligns finally with the east. Turkey comes together with Armenia, Russia, Iran, and northern Africa and others to attack Israel. Their final status as an Israel-hater is certain. The journey has been a tumultuous one ever since Paul’s missionary days into Asia Minor, which Turkey is still known as (also Anatolia). The question is, how does Turkey get from seeking to align with the west, to warring against them?
Ezekiel 38:6 says that Gomer and the house of beth-Togarmah join the Gog-Magog attack. I interpret Gomer to be Turkey and beth-Togarmah as Armenia. No one is quite positive though. We do know the region these days is Muslim. You can research the historical/biblical names here, and directly from the Bible here and here.
Now to the original verse in Revelation. The verse says that there were/are 7 kingdoms. Some say the 7th both are Rome, and some say that the 7th could be the Ottoman Empire. Or a mixture of the two, Roman Empire and Muslim empire, combined or mixed. Note the last part of the Revelation verse, ‘the beast is the eighth AND is of the seven’ could be satisfied by a ruler from the eastern leg of the statue that was part of Roman empire but not Rome.
The Ottomans existed as an empire for 500 years, disappearing in 1922 with the cessation of the office of Caliph (Ruler of all Muslims).
John MacArthur said in his sermon "The Grim Reality of the Last Days", "Now somebody might say, “Well, when you think about the future and what’s going to happen in the world, don’t we have a revived Roman Empire? Doesn’t that mean the west? You remember that the image in Daniel 2 of the final world empire had two legs and the Roman Empire had the west and the east? You know, of course, if you know history that the western part of the Roman Empire basically dissolved and the east survived for a thousand years or more so that at the time of the New Testament, sixty percent of the Roman Empire was land that is now under Muslim control...at least 60 percent. The vast majority of the Roman Empire in New Testament times is today under Muslim control and Islam is moving across the west rapidly in Europe, isn’t it? When you have a picture in Ezekiel 38, you have a picture of the Antichrist, Gog and you have the listing of eight nations, that will be a coalition for the Antichrist. All eight of those are Muslim nations, all eight of them. And they ring the Mediterranean to Libya. In Revelation 17:9 to 11 it says there were six kingdoms and then a seventh and finally an eighth. What is the seventh? Well there’s been a discussion about that, it well could be the Ottoman Turk Empire which lasted five hundred years and didn’t really fall until the modern era. The Turkish Empire was the last Caliphate which ended in 1923 and they’re waiting for the restoration when the Mahdi comes."
What I’m saying is, the Bible shows us that the Ottoman Empire, wherever its central hub of activity or capital may be located in future, will likely be a last days player. This one World religion Abrahamic site in Abu Dhabi is interesting for that reason.
That the Ottomans could be the 7th kingdom mentioned in the Revelation verse is worth pondering, as we watch activity in the Middle East with biblical interest, and keep praying for its peoples, any of them or all of them, to come to Christ.