Why I Embrace Christian Zionism


There was a time when I was a stranger to Christian Zionism. I was on the outside, I was in the darkness, and I was very much missing out on the blessings found in Christian Zionism. Then God, in His mercy, added me to the family, and to the number of those who have embraced Christian Zionism for the last 2000 years. I haven’t been the same since!

The author of Hebrews described this great transformation about 1950 years ago to his audience at the time, members of the early church:

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect, to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel” (Hebrews 12:22-24).

I am a Christian Zionist because I am a Christian who has been brought to the heavenly Mount Zion, the one that is connected to the heavenly Jerusalem, to Jesus as our Mediator, to the body of Christ, and to the new covenant. This Zionism is glorious, and it’s all about the blessings and promises found in Jesus.

At the same time, I’m not a Christian Zionist. It all depends upon the definition, and one’s covenant perspective. I’m not a Christian Zionist if one goes by the following definitions:

[1] Zionists seek to support, facilitate and advance the return of the Jewish people and sovereignty to their native homeland–the land of Israel. Christians who see the regathering of the Jewish people in their land, as well as the establishment of the sovereign nation of Israel in 1948, as the literal fulfillment of biblical prophecy are known as “Christian Zionists”. Christian Zionists see the Jewish people as the “apple of God’s eye”–His Chosen people, and hold firm that God’s promises, established in the Abrahamic Covenant, remain in effect today.

Christian Zionists are “Biblical advocates” for the Jewish people and the state of Israel. Furthermore, they stand in firm, diametrical opposition to land concessions of any sort which involve the forfeiture of the holy land of Israel as it is a sacred manifestation of the promises of God to the people He calls the “apple of His eye”. Christian Zionists also seek to stand with Israel, showing her unconditional support, solidarity and love whilst praying for her spiritual return to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who “foreknew” her.

Mikael Knighton, Christians Standing With Israel, 2007 (Source)

[2] “Zionism [is] the national movement for the return of the Jewish people to their homeland and the resumption of Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel… Jews of all persuasions, left and right, religious and secular, joined to form the Zionist movement and worked together toward these goals. Disagreements led to rifts, but ultimately, the common goal of a Jewish state in its ancient homeland was attained. The term “Zionism” was coined in 1890 by Nathan Birnbaum.” (Jewish Virtual Library).

If Zionism is the belief in the Jewish people’s right to return to their homeland, then a Christian Zionist should simply be defined as a Christian who supports the Jewish people’s right to return to their homeland… The actual theology of Christian Zionism, also known as Biblical Zionism, supports the right of the Jewish people to return to their homeland on scriptural grounds… Christian Zionism is confirmed throughout the Hebrew Scriptures… Christian Zionism differs with Replacement Theology which teaches that the special relationship that Israel had with her God in terms of her national destiny and her national homeland has been lost because of her rejection of Jesus as Messiah, and therefore the Church has become the new Israel.

Rev. Malcolm Hedding, Vice-chairman of the Board, International Christian Embassy Jerusalem, “Christian Zionism 101 – Giving Definition to the Movement.” (Source)

[3] “Christian Zionism is a belief among some Christians that the return of the Jews to the Holy Land, and the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, is in accordance with Biblical prophecy.”

Wikipedia, March 2014 (Source)

John Hagee, the founder of Christians United For Israel (CUFI), is recognized as a well-known leader in this movement known as Christian Zionism. CUFI’s theme verse is Isaiah 62:1. “For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, for Jerusalem’s sake I will not remain quiet, til her righteousness shines out like the dawn, her salvation like a blazing torch.” (Source) It doesn’t take much digging around to understand how Hagee interprets this verse and applies it to the present day. Shhh – don’t tell him that righteousness and salvation have been shining out from Jesus and His church like a blazing torch for the last 2000 years!

Earthly or Heavenly Zion?

You may have already noticed how incredibly preoccupied the Christian Zionist movement is with earthly Zion (Israel). This movement is heavily invested in political/earthly Israel, political/earthly Jerusalem, and the old covenant. This is essentially where this movement goes off track.

Did you notice the very first word in the passage from Hebrews early in this post? It’s a mere conjunction, but it’s very important. It’s the word “but.”

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem…”

Through a basic language rule, we know that the author of Hebrews is contrasting something he said earlier. Let’s take a look at the previous few verses:

For you have not come to the mountain that may be touched and that burned with fire, and to blackness and darkness and tempest, and the sound of a trumpet and the voice of words, so that those who heard it begged that the word should not be spoken to them anymore. For they could not endure what was commanded: “And if so much as a beast touches the mountain, it shall be stoned or shot with an arrow.” And so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, “I am exceedingly afraid and trembling” (Hebrews 12:18-21).

What did he describe here? He described the scene at Mount Sinai where the law code and the old covenant was given to the people of Israel through Moses. The following contrast is shown:

Mount Sinai = physical (able to be touched), earthly, old covenant… Mount Zion = spiritual (not able to be touched), heavenly, new covenant…

In light of this passage, how does the Christian Zionist movement align itself? Where does it stand in light of what Paul says in Galatians 4:21-31?

Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not hear the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons: the one by a bondwoman, the other by a freewoman. But he who was of the bondwoman was born according to the flesh, and he of the freewoman through promise, which things are symbolic. For these are the two covenants: the one from Mount Sinai which gives birth to bondage, which is Hagar— for this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia, and corresponds to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children but the Jerusalem above is free, which is the mother of us all. For it is written: “Rejoice, O barren, you who do not bear! Break forth and shout, you who are not in labor! For the desolate has many more children than she who has a husband.” Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are children of promise. But, as he who was born according to the flesh then persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, even so it is now. Nevertheless what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the bondwoman and her son, for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman.” So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman but of the free.

The Christian Zionist movement has hijacked both terms that it carries, “Christian” and “Zionism.” For decades it has tried to tell the world that Christians are obsessed with a certain land, a certain country, a certain city, a certain race of people, and a Zion that is of this world. It has suppressed new covenant truths, such as God not showing favoritism to one race over others (e.g. Romans 10:12), and has promoted and financially supported injustice and ethnic cleansing, all in the name of Christianity and before the eyes of a watching world.

Biblical Zionism, according to Galatians 4 and Hebrews 12, is aligned with heavenly Jerusalem, Jesus as our Mediator, His church, His shed blood, transformed hearts, freedom, God’s promises, and the new covenant.

This is the Christian Zionism that I embrace.

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Echoes of Mount Sinai in the Book of Revelation


Series: “Little Gems from Our Study of the Book of Revelation”

What point(s) did John, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, wish to get across to his initial readers when he distributed the book of Revelation to seven churches in first century Asia Minor? What themes are weaved through the book? In considering these questions, keep in mind that the full title of the book is “The Revelation of Jesus Christ.”

Proposal: One of the Holy Spirit’s aims in Revelation is to guide the early church in navigating the transition period from one covenant (the old) to the next (the new), especially as that period was drawing to a close. This period lasted roughly 40 years (30 AD – 70 AD), parallel to the 40 years that the Israelites wandered in the wilderness.

Basis (one of several): The same imagery that was present at the giving of the law, the old covenant, is echoed several times in the book of Revelation (4:5, 8:5, 11:19, and 16:18). This post will highlight these passages and their significance.

Parallel Scripture Passage: In that He says, ‘a new covenant,’ He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away” (Hebrews 8:13, 1st century AD).

Moses and the Israelites at Mount Sinai

Just before examining these passages in Revelation, let’s look at Exodus 19, the passage I believe they echo:

In the third month after the children of Israel had gone out of the land of Egypt, on the same day, they came to the Wilderness of Sinai. For they had departed from Rephidim, had come to the Wilderness of Sinai, and camped in the wilderness. So Israel camped there before the mountain. And Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel: ‘You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself. Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel.”

Then it came to pass on the third day, in the morning, that there were thunderings and lightnings, and a thick cloud on the mountain; and the sound of the trumpet was very loud, so that all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. Now Mount Sinai was completely in smoke, because the Lord descended upon it in fire. Its smoke ascended like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain quaked greatly  (Exodus 19:1-18).

So we see that God reminded them of how He bore the people of Israel “on eagles’ wings”* out of Egypt and to Himself. God was establishing a covenant with them at this time, and He called them to be “a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.”** This gathering was marked by thundering and lightning, the sound of a loud trumpet, thick smoke, and the whole mountain quaking greatly.

*Compare to Revelation 12:13-14, where the persecuted womanwas given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent.”

**Compare this with John’s opening greeting to the seven churches, where he says that Jesus “has made us kings and priests to His God and Father” (Revelation 1:6).

Four Passages That Echo Mount Sinai in Revelation

The same cosmic phenomena present at Mount Sinai are seen again in the book of Revelation. Observe the following passages, with some brief notes on their likely significance:

1. Revelation 4:4-5

Around the throne were 24 thrones, and on the thrones I saw 24 elders sitting, clothed in white robes; and they had crowns of gold on their heads. And from the throne proceeded lightnings, thunderings, and voices. Seven lamps of fire were burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.”

As we noted in our study of Revelation 4, the 24 elders may very well “depict the 12 patriarchs of Israel and the 12 apostles, who represent the redeemed of both covenants now united in Christ.” This seems to be substantiated by the names of the 12 tribes and the 12 apostles found written on the gates and walls of the new Jerusalem (Rev. 21:12-14). So it appears that this covenant-establishing imagery takes place in the presence of elders representing both the old and the new covenant ages.

2. Revelation 8:4-6

And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended before God from the angel’s hand. Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and threw it to the earth. And there were noises, thunderings, lightnings, and an earthquake. So the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound.”

This scene takes place at the opening of the seventh and final seal (Rev. 8:1). An angel with a golden censer offers the prayers of the saints, along with incense, upon the altar before God’s throne (verse 3). We proposed in our study of Rev. 8 that these prayers are linked to the cries of the martyrs for God to avenge their “blood on those who dwell on the earth” – Rev. 6:10 (see this post for a more complete study on this subject). It seems likely that the seal judgments are poured out in response to the prayers of God’s people. Therefore, the covenant-establishing imagery of Mount Sinai appears here because the prayers of the new covenant community were about to result in the old covenant system reaching its demise.

3. Revelation 11:19

Then the temple of God was opened in heaven, and the ark of His covenant was seen in His temple. And there were lightnings, noises, thunderings, an earthquake, and great hail.

Just as the scene we examined in Rev. 8 takes place at the opening of the seventh seal, this scene takes place at the sounding of the seventh trumpet. Loud voices declare, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” The 24 elders are present at this scene (Rev. 11:15-16).

In verse 19 we see probably the most explicit reference connecting the old covenant to the prophecies in the book of Revelation. John sees a vision of God’s temple housing “the ark of His covenant.” In ancient Israel, the ark of the covenant was a centerpiece of the temple and the old covenant. Located in the Most Holy Place, it represented God’s presence: “You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the Testimony that I will give you. And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are on the ark of the Testimony, about everything which I will give you in commandment to the children of Israel” (Exodus 25:21-22). For further significance, see Numbers 7:89, 10:33-35; Joshua 3:13, 7:6-11; Judges 20:27; II Samuel 6:2; II Kings 19:15; Psalm 28:2, 80:1.

When the dust settles from the barrage of judgments in Revelation, what does heaven shout? “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God” (Rev. 21:3). This did not suddenly become true because some buildings fell in 70 AD. Remember that Paul told the Corinthian church this was already their reality and that they were “the temple of the living God (II Cor. 6:16). The downfall of Israel, Jerusalem, and the temple in 70 AD, however, did remove the far less glorious old covenant system which competed against, and greatly opposed, this reality. It was a stunning and vivid demonstration that God had chosen the glorious new covenant over the inferior old covenant (see Hebrews 8). This was the time for rewarding God’s “servants the prophets and the saints, and those who fear [His] name, small and great” (Rev. 11:18).

Several verses earlier, John witnesses an actual earthquake that kills 7000 people in“the city” (Rev. 11:13), already identified in verse 8 as Jerusalem (“the great city…where also our Lord was crucified“). As we noted in our study of Revelation 11, Josephus records one awful night in early 68 AD when “a prodigious storm” took place in Jerusalem, marked by “the largest showers of rain, with continued lightnings, terrible thunderings, and amazing concussions and bellowings of the earth, that was in an earthquake.” Josephus adds that the Jewish zealots allowed the Idumaeans to come in and help them slaughter some of their fellow Jews who opposed their rebellion against the Romans. Between this slaughter and the earthquake, 8500 people died that night (Josephus, Wars 4:4:5, 4:4:7-4:5:1).

4. Revelation 16:17-21

Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, ‘It is done!’ And there were noises and thunderings and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such a mighty and great earthquake as had not occurred since men were on the earth. Now the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. And great Babylon was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath. Then every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. And great hail from heaven fell upon men, each hailstone about the weight of a talent. Men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, since that plague was exceedingly great. 

Just as the scene we examined in Rev. 8 takes place at the opening of the seventh seal, and the scene in Rev. 11 takes place at the sounding of the seventh trumpet, this scene takes place at the pouring out of the seventh bowl.

John sees the great city, Jerusalem, divided into three parts. As we noted in our study of Revelation 16, this is a flashback to Ezekiel 5:1-12, when the prophet was required to shave his head and divide it into three parts, and was told by God: “This is Jerusalem” (Ezek 5:5).  One third of his hair was burned, one third was chopped up by the sword, and the last third was scattered into the wind. This was fulfilled when Jerusalem was destroyed in 586 B.C. at the hands of Babylon, and Josephus records the same tragedies in 70 AD at the hands of Rome (1.1 million Jews killed by the sword or by fire, and all the survivors exiled or sold into slavery). Jerusalem was also divided between 67-70 AD into three warring factions: [1] the Zealots, led by Eleazar [2] the Galileans, led by John of Gischala, and [3] the Idumeans, led by Simon.

Just as an actual deadly earthquake took place as foretold in Rev. 11, actual hail – “about the weight of a talent” (i.e. 75 – 100 pounds) – also fell as foretold in Rev. 16. Josephus wrote of large stones shot from catapults by the Roman armies into the temple complex in Jerusalem, which the watchmen in the city reported as appearing white in the sky:

“Now the stones that were cast were of the weight of a talent, and were carried two furlongs and further. The blow they gave was no way to be sustained, not only by those that stood first in the way, but by those that were beyond them for a great space. As for the Jews, they at first watched the coming of the stone, for it was of a white color, and could therefore not only be perceived by the great noise it made, but could be seen also before it came by its brightness” (Josephus, Wars 5:6:3).

Josephus also records that the watchmen on the wall, when they saw the stones coming, would shout, “The Son cometh!” After a while the Romans learned to blacken the stones so that they couldn’t as easily be detected, and many more were crushed by these stones. J. Stuart Russell, in his 1878 book titled The Parousia, offers this explanation for the words of the watchmen (p. 482):

“It could not but be well known to the Jews that the great hope and faith of the Christians was the speedy coming of the Son. It was about this very time, according to Hegesippus [110-180 AD], that St. James, the brother of our Lord, publicly testified in the temple that ‘the Son of man was about to come in the clouds of heaven,’ and then sealed his testimony with his blood [in 62 AD]. It seems highly probable that the Jews, in their defiant and desperate blasphemy, when they saw the white mass hurtling though the air, raised the ribald cry, ‘The Son is coming,’ in mockery of the Christian hope of the Parousia.”

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In his book,Revelation: Four Views (A Parallel Commentary),” Steve Gregg also sees the connection between Mount Sinai and Revelation, as he shares concerning Rev. 4 (p. 88):

“The lightnings, thundering and voices (v. 5) recall Mount Sinai, where God first established His covenant with Israel [Exodus 19:16; cf. Rev. 8:5, 11:19]. Similar phenomena are mentioned here to suggest the end of that covenant and its replacement with another. The writer of Hebrews (citing Hag. 2) likened the overthrow of the first covenant (publicly demonstrated by the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in A.D. 70) to the time of its establishment at Sinai, but the latter would be accompanied by even more fearful phenomena (Heb. 12:18-29).”

Steve Gregg also shares David Chilton’s comparison of Revelation 19:1-6 with Revelation 11:15-19 (which we have already examined). Chilton indicates that very similar subject matter is established “in the two passages which represent the closing visions of the two major sections of the book” (p. 440):

1. loud voices…in heaven (11:15; 19:1);
2. the declaration of the commencement of the reign of God (11:15, 17; 19:1, 6);
3. the twenty-four elders fall on their faces and worship (11:16; 19:4);
4. the avenging of the blood of His servants is announced (11:18; 18:24; 19:2);
5. reference to God’s servants…who fear Him, small and great (11:18; 19:5);
6. loud noises, including thunderings (11:19; 19:6).

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Check out the first two posts in this mini-series:

1. Revelation 6 and Luke 23: Hide Us From the Wrath of the Lamb
2. The Avenging of Righteous Blood (Deuteronomy, Matthew, and Revelation)

New WordPress Theme, Facebook Page, and Personal Site


In this post, I’d like to briefly share some information about this site’s new theme, a new Facebook page for this site, and a personal website.

New WordPress Theme (Motif)

A few days ago I switched to a different WordPress theme for this site. Previously I was using the “Under the Influence” theme. I didn’t know until I was browsing alternate themes that “Under the Influence” was retired in 2012 and was no longer being updated. I’m now using the “Motif” theme, which is fully responsive (for optimized viewing on computers, tablets, and smartphones).

I welcome any feedback you have on the new theme, including the site’s appearance, how the pages load, and anything else you might observe (or find to be a challenge). The background picture, by the way, is the same one found at the top of a post I wrote last September featuring St. Paul, Minnesota’s downtown skyway.

Downtown St. Paul 02 - Copy

You’ll probably notice several additions to the sidebar, and a couple of changes as well, including the search widget at the top. The previous header image is no longer in the header position, but it can be seen at the top of our About page. My wife created it about a year ago, and I think she did a great job:

cropped-adamfufilledpic1.jpg

New Facebook Page for Pursuing Truth

One of the additions in the sidebar is a new Facebook page for this site. It was also created just the other day and I haven’t yet announced it on my personal Facebook page or anywhere else. If “liking” Facebook posts, comments, and pages is one of your hobbies or addictions (just kidding), do feel free to “like” the new page:

https://www.facebook.com/KloposmasmPursuingTruth

Personal Website

(2016 Update: The site I described below was discontinued, and http://www.adammaarschalk.com is now the URL for this site instead of http://www.kloposmasm.com.)

My wife’s skills are also on display at a personal website I created last fall. The home page was “under construction” for several months, mainly because I didn’t know what I was doing. This site, Pursuing Truth, is hosted on WordPress.com, but my personal site, www.adammaarschalk.com, is hosted on WordPress.org. WordPress.org has a much different setup, with certain options (e.g. plugins) not available on WordPress.com.

Most of the design work was done by my wife, and she also created the neat photo slideshow on the home page. I know I’m biased, but I do think she could have a good future ahead of her in web design.

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Thank you, as always, for visiting and participating here, and I hope you find the content to be a blessing, educational, and of value.

Revelation: The Land (“Ge”) Is Referenced 22 Times More Often Than the World (“Kosmos”)


It’s well-known that the book of Revelation foretells, among other things, a series of frightening judgments falling upon an entity known as Babylon the Great and “the harlot.” Just as importantly, Revelation also portrays beautiful worship scenes and glorious destinies and realities for God’s people. Regarding the judgments, Does John picture them being poured out upon the entire planet, or upon a particular location?

Jonathan Welton, author of the book “Raptureless,” has created another helpful graphic illustrating the fulfillment of Bible prophecy (See his previous graphic on Daniel 2 illustrating that God’s kingdom has come). Titled “John’s Olivet Discourse: A Look at the Writings of John,” Welton’s graphic [1] makes a case that the book of Revelation contains John’s version of the Olivet Discourse [2] shows some of John’s time tables [3] notes an important principle of Bible interpretation, and [4] shows that John speaks far more about local events in Revelation than he speaks about global events.

We can also add Revelation 1:1 and 1:3 to Welton’s list of time statements made by the apostle John:

The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants—things which must shortly take place.
Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.

The last part of Welton’s graphic is very informative. The following chart takes the numbers he provides (plus a couple more that I looked up) and allows us to see how focused John was on local events in the book of Revelation compared to his gospel account:

John’s books Number of chapters in each book Number of times John uses the word “kosmos,” meaning the entire planet Number of times John uses the word “ge,” meaning the land (a region)
The Gospel According to John 21 57 3
I John 5 17 1
II John 1 1 0
III John 1 0 0
Revelation 22 3 67

In other New Testament passages where the word “ge” is translated as “earth,” many assume that those passages are speaking about the entire planet. We need to be more careful with this assumption. One instance where it appears is in Luke’s version of the Olivet Discourse (Luke 21:23). There, Luke is clearly speaking about Israel. Some Bible versions translate this word as “earth,” while others translate it as “land.” Here is how Luke 21:23 reads, in context:

But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation is near. Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those who are in the midst of her depart, and let not those who are in the country enter her. For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. But woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing babies in those days! For there will be great distress in the land and wrath upon this people” (Luke 21:20-23).

The same word that Luke used in reference to Judea is the one that John used 67 times in the book of Revelation.

18 Case Studies on How John Used “Ge” to Speak of 1st Century Israel in Revelation

In 2010 I wrote a 3-part series tracking this phenomenon throughout the book of Revelation. The phrase “those who dwell on the earth” appears 10 times in Revelation, and at least a couple dozen more times in various forms. This series presents 18 case studies showing when and how this expression is used, examining the context in each case, and seeing how it’s used elsewhere in Scripture. A strong case is made that this expression in Revelation indicates 1st century apostate Israel. This series can be seen here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3. If you have the time to read it, I believe you’ll find it informative.

A Final Note on How John Used the Word “Kosmos” Three Times in Revelation

Although it’s fun and enlightening to see how John used the word “ge” so many times in reference to the land of Israel, it’s also enlightening to see how he used the word “kosmos” to speak of the planet on which we live. Two of these instances concern those whose names are, or are not, written in the Book of Life. This is a global reference, as it ought to be, for the body of Christ is global and the message of the gospel is for every nation, tribe, language, and tongue. The third reference is to the kingdom of God, its triumph and greatness over all the kingdoms of this world (planet), and the eternal and universal reign of Jesus Christ:

1. “Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, ‘The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!'” (Rev. 11:15)
2. “All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Rev. 13:8).
3. “The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition. And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is” (Rev. 17:8).