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Book Review

"The coming prince"

 

 

Sir Robert Anderson's THE COMING PRINCE stands as a classic among writers of Bible Prophecy. Anderson wrote over 100 years ago but his insight into prophecy is highly relevant today. Anderson saw correctly that for end time prophecy to have fulfillment, ushering in the reign of Christ on earth, that Israel must achieve nationhood. He searched his world in his day for signs that seemed at that time to be a political possibilities for events to be right to usher in the Millennial Kingdom. He found that in his day it would be impossible but what would he find were he to live in our day, with signs clearly pointing to the end of times? Anderson explains for us, the seventy-weeks prophecy of Daniel in detail and how it is the key to understanding Biblical prophecy, the coming Anti-Christ, and the coming King of Heaven and His kingdom.

     In THE COMING PRINCE Anderson looks at the end, when the evil Prince that comes, is born Anti-Christ. Anderson looks at the signs we must see before the Tribulation, and the evil Prince arrive. Here is a review of Anderson's book, THE COMING PRINCE. (Anderson, Sir Robert. The Coming Prince. Kregal Classics, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 10th Edition, 1957.)

     How did Anderson know that the Tribulation period had a specific seven year time period, was Jewish in origin but would also be a worldwide event? Anderson's analysis has stood the test of time in this detailed account of end time prophesy. Anderson's book is detailed and is not an easy read, but let's look at his analysis, and seek to make it understandable. 

     In Daniel chapter 9, Daniel begins to pray in earnest for the restoration of Israel, and confess his sins and the sins of his nation. In verse 20 we find that the angel Gabriel came to Daniel to deliver a message that encompassed the life, events of Israel's destruction as a nation, and finally to make an end of sins and bring in everlasting righteousness. In the end "the Most Holy" one would be anointed. We find as we look at the book of Daniel, and as Anderson states, seventy weeks are allowed for Israel yet, to fill up, it's life as a people before Christ's second coming to reign on Earth. Each of these "weeks" are periods of 7 years. Of these 70 weeks, the last week, is actually a period of seven years and is the time of Tribulation. After this final week, Messiah comes. It is important to note Anderson's proof, that when we speak of years in prophecy, the year was composed of 360 days.

     Are we approaching that 70th week? Anderson would give a thunderous YES to the question. 

     Anderson's first task is to establish periods of time for the weeks, which angel Gabriel reports to Daniel. Anderson, from ancient writers, understood that the common understanding of the ancients, weeks were meant to be considered to be years in prophecy. Daniel's exile was one week of 70 years span from Jeremiah 25. The angel Gabriel stated that 70 weeks [with each week being equal to 7 years] were determined for Israel from the issue of the decree to rebuild the CITY of Jerusalem. In other words, when Israel entered once again into nationhood from it's exile during Daniel's life, it would have 70 weeks of future existence nationally. Now, these weeks were not to be consecutive. Sixty-nine weeks were decreed from the issue of the decree to rebuild the city, until Messiah [Jesus] would be cut off [when Jesus would die on the cross]. After that period, a gap of undetermined length would occur between the 69th and 70th week and the final week would begin once Israel again found nationhood, and the week occur within a single Bible generation. 

     So to simplify - Daniel's 70 weeks would occur when nationhood, after exile occurred, the end of the 69th week would occur when Messiah was 'cut off', and the final week would occur, a period of Tribulation of one week [or seven years], would start sometime after nationhood occurred again for Israel. 

     The proof of Anderson's scheme of weeks to be years, is proven as specific dates are established for the "decree" until the time of Messiah being "cut off". If those intervening years, prove to correspond to the "weeks" theory, then the rest is true as well. And Anderson proves his point.

     Disregarding the three 'decrees' in Ezra as not part of this prophecy, Anderson finds that the decree in Nehemiah precisely fits the angels message. In Ezra, decrees were issued by pagan kings to rebuild the sanctuary and clear ruble, but in each of those, the people lack energy and divine earnestness and the job is not completed, even twenty-five years later. But the decree in Nehemiah produces results. Orders were issued to rebuild and within four months, the city was enclosed with ramparts and gates before the feast of Tabernacles.  "This was a revival of the national existence of Judah, and therefore it is fitly chosen as the epoch of the prophetic period of seventy weeks." (Anderson, pg. 63). 

     Anderson carefully recounts the date of reckoning for the issuing of the proclamation of Artaxerxes, in his 20th year as king. King Artaxerxes ascends the throne on July BC 465. The command to rebuild was given in the month of Nissan BC 446. This is strong proof from Scripture for a week, being 7 years of length. But when was Jesus 'cut off'? Christ's birth occurred not earlier than autumn of BC 4. Jesus began to minister on August 19th, AD 28 Anderson determines. His first Passover was in the month of Nissan, AD 29. Jesus entered Jerusalem on 10th Nissan, AD 32 or April 6th AD 32. The command to go forth occurred on 445 BC, March 14th. That is equal to 69 weeks, with a week equal to 7 years, and each year of 360 days, or 173,880 days, precisely from the decree until Jesus entered Jerusalem in AD 32.

     In the book of Revelation the number of days for the Tribulation is given as two periods of 1260 days (Revelation 11:3) or 7 years.  During that period of time the Prince, the evil one, comes. He will reign on earth, and subject the whole earth to the rule of Satan. This will occur during the Tribulation period, which is the final, and 70th week of Daniel. This week, like all the previous 69 weeks, has as it's focus, the nation of Israel. 

     The final week, the 70th week, is composed of two periods of 3 1/2 years each from Revelation 12: 6 & 14 with each half composed of 1260 days, or 42 months, or 3 1/2 years. Anderson believes that Revelation teaches that when the Anti Christ betrays Israel, when the Prince puts an abomination in their new temple, that this occurs half way through the last week, and from that point on, persecution of the Jews is intense. 

     Anderson deals with the seeming confusion in Scripture that asserts that God's people are "caught up" , removed from the earth, and at the same time in Matthew 13:40-43 it appears the wicked are removed from the earth and the righteous are left "to shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father".... Anderson concludes that their is only one solution to this apparent dilemma. He states that what we term "the advent" of Christ is not a single event, but includes several distinct manifestations. 

     One event will be to take up from the earth the righteous dead and the living saints - and once this occurs the days of Israel begin again. The Church will remove with Him and God will once again include Israel in His prophetic plan. Anderson concludes that the initial stage of His advent to it's last stage has an interval. 

     The Jews as a nation, Anderson concludes, are without excuse as to being cast off for a time. In Mathew 10, the disciples were finally commissioned, before Israel was to know it's Messiah, to preach the gospel, to heal the sick, to cast out demons, cleanse lepers and raise the dead. In this tiny land, these disciples spread a powerful testimony that was undeniable. Yet despite this, Israel's leaders met to plot Jesus death. At this point, Anderson shows, Jesus ministry continued, but the gospel of the Kingdom ceased. He told everyone he healed to not make Him known, and He taught in parables. His ministry had entered a new phase, with His people excluded, and the gospel coming to the Gentiles as they would become the Bride, while Israel was cast off for awhile until the 70th week of Daniel should begin. In Mathew 13 no longer is Jesus sharing the Kingdom but the 'mysteries' of the Kingdom. Jesus became a sower of seeds rather than a King but a day would come when all should be fulfilled. After Jesus taught his disciples of this new plan in Mathew 24:3 his disciples asked "What shall be the sign of Thy coming and the end of the age?" 

     Jesus, according to Anderson, then gave them a prophetic utterance in the 15th verse, that fixes a point that connects the teaching of Jesus in the post Kingdom mystery teaching, the vision of John in Revelation, and the prophecies of Daniel. Daniel's vision of the defilement of the Holy place is the signal for the great trial, the fiercest persecution, the greatest fight against God's people, Israel, ever known - the Great Tribulation. 

     Anderson, writing in the late 19th century, determines that Israel must be restored in Palestine as a nation for Mathew 24 to have fulfillment. He could say based on that observation, that the end, was not yet, and not in his time period. We, today, are unable to say that same thing because Israel is a nation, as of 1948. If we, my friends, are to take a Bible generation to be from 70 to 80 years according to Psalm 90:3, then the generation time period, specified in Mathew 24:34, will end in 2028. 

     Anderson wrote, "...when that nation comes again upon the scene, the element of miraculous interpositions will mark once more the course of events on earth."  

     Anderson describes the present church age "the present dispensation"  - the age of the Church - the mystery hidden from all eyes - known of God - but not the "stated" goal of God. The goal of God was to Israel and to make His kingdom in their midst. God has not cast away His people, and the prophecy of Daniel's 70th week will resume shortly. 

     Anderson's writing includes more detail of the events moving through the Book of Revelation, and the Seal judgments, which I invite the reader to peruse. 

     Anderson sets a different course than many popular theorists today believing that Anti-Christ is defeated outright and quickly. He notes that his quick defeat was a popular notion in his day, but we know only that his defeat occurs during the anti-Christ's lifetime.  He believes their is an interval after the 70th week concludes and Christ's return. 

     This coming Prince, this Anti-Christ, will come when society will have reached full transgression against God, when Apostasy will be paramount. The coming prince, will be characterized as one who sets his face against all others, he will magnify himself with pride, shall do according to his will, shall magnify himself against every god, and understand dark statues, he shall not regard the God of his fathers, nor have desire for women, and he will honor the god of forces, or paganism. 

     The coming Prince's actions are also listed: his acts and his power will not come from men, he is able to destroy and astound at the same time, he shall get stronger and stronger through his actions, he shall be inventive and all new craft will come from him, he destroys peace, he will speak against the Most High, he decorates his new god with silver, gold, and jewels [reminiscent of the description of Satan in Ezekiel 28:13], he will make war and flow over his enemies and conquer many countries. 

     In the last days, wrote Anderson, serpent worship will become prevalent "...as all the world wondered after the Beast, and they worshipped the Dragon [serpent] which gave power unto the Beast, and they worshiped the Beast."  ( Revelation 13:3,4) 

     "The beast will command the homage of a world that has rejected grace." (Anderson, pg 219). 

     Anderson notes that a special blessing is reserved for those who study the prophecies (Revelation 1:3) and that they give light to "...warn, guide, and cheer His saints in evil days." May we blessed as we look to Him in these last days. 

     

     

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Anderson built a career as a prosecutor as the Assistant Commissioner of Crime at Scotland Yard. During his career crime in London declined. During his tenor two of many events occurred, One, Jack the Ripper terrorized London with help of the press, and Sherlock Holmes stories became popular. Anderson wrote an article called "Sherlock Holmes as seen from Scotland Yard". (T.P's Weekly, October 2, 1903.)  His many books on Biblical topics have enlightened and encouraged many thousands of saints through the years with his unapologetic style for Biblical accuracy.  

How do we come to believe and understand that the Tribulation period, described in various places in scripture, most notably in the book of Revelation is seven years in length? What is the significance of the mention of 70 weeks in Daniel _:_ ? Will the Church go through the Tribulation period? Who is the Prince that is to come according to Daniel _:_ and what is his nature? Is his nature good or evil? What will the world think of the Prince? Why study prophecy?   Every website has a story, and your visitors want to hear yours. This space is a great opportunity to provide any personal details you want to share with your followers. Include interesting anecdotes and facts to keep readers engaged.
 

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