The Jewish holiday of Purim celebrates the bravery of Esther as she helped thwart a plan by a Persian king to wipe out the Jewish people 2,500 years ago.
The colorful festival of Purim, observed this year on March 20-21, remembers how Esther, who was chosen to be the wife of King Ahasuerus, used her influence to stop of the plan of the king's adviser, Haman, who had persuaded the king to wipe out the Jews.
Author and pastor Mark Biltz states in his newest book, Decoding the Antichrist and the End Times: What the Bible Says and What the Future Holds, that there are connections between Purim, the biblical calendar and the end times, as those historical events will repeat.
"In the story of Purim," Biltz says, "we read about a man named Haman, who, with the spirit of the Antichrist, wants to annihilate the Jewish people. While Purim implies there was law and order within the society, it was also a time of complete lawlessness. We see this is true from Scripture itself. In the first chapter of Esther, starting in verse 8, everything was done according to the law—even drinking. By verse 13, they decide to enact a law that allows ethnic cleansing, making it permissible to kill all Jews and take their possessions. Of course, making it a law justifies it!"
This same "legalization of lawlessness" is happening today, Biltz adds, especially in terms of morality.
"Many think that all we have to do is make laws and legalize abortion, legalize drugs, legalize prostitution and legalize whatever is immoral, and then our conscience will be cleared," he said. "The whole concept of illegality is being turned on its head! We must follow the pattern of the Bible. That which has happened before will happen again. History repeats itself, and those who don't learn from it are doomed to repeat it."
The Antichrist's main goal, Biltz writes in Decoding the Antichrist, will not be annihilation but assimilation.
"We see this with the current teaching of 'Chrislam,' which is a concerted effort to join Islam with Christianity, as if this will bring world peace," he said. "To many Christians, their Messiah, Jesus, has done away with the law, and we are now all under grace. Many believe that Jesus changed, modified or canceled God's law, which would be a strange action for a biblical Messiah who claims to be the same yesterday, today and forever."
Decoding the Antichrist and the End Times takes an in-depth look at some of the deepest questions surrounding the Antichrist, such as the following:
- What does the Bible say about the Antichrist's tactics and his motivation?
- Will he be a Muslim, a Jew or a professed Christian—or something else?
- Will the Antichrist work through modern technology to seize control?
Mark Biltz is founder of El Shaddai Ministries and a well-known and popular commentator on the feasts of the Lord. In fact, he has produced a series of DVDs on the feasts that have gone around the world. Biltz is also the author of Blood Moons and God's Day Timer. His research and theories have led to guest appearances on both radio and television as well as being featured on the covers of magazines.
Decoding the Antichrist and the End Times is published by Charisma House, which has published books that challenge, encourage, teach and equip Christians, including 14 New York Times' best-sellers.
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