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Atheism is a symptom of a world fumbling for meaning and purpose. God has always allowed man the choice of obedience or disobedience. Belief or unbelief. When disobedience is chosen a vicious downward cycle begins. God is forgotten and a culture develops that does not acknowledge truth.
People are becoming more secular and atheistic. Because religion is often seen as an oppressor, atheism is viewed by many as a liberator. However the Bible predicts a future time when a breakdown in world order will threaten civilization and, to prevent this collapse, two powerful figures—one political and one religious—will step onto the stage.
Political and economic conditions will come to a point where world order will appear to be collapsing. almost overnight. The comfortable, functioning, convenient global world man has created will seem to be over. At the last minute, an extraordinary power, described in Revelation, will take control. Order will be restored. Banks will be safe. Retirement funds will be secure. Life will return to normal, but at the cost of personal freedom and life as we know it today.
Revelation chapter 13 tells of the rise of two distinct power centres, one is political and the other is religious. Both are called “beasts” which is a biblical image for powers and empires that impact God’s plan and His people. They will derive their power from the dragon, which is a symbol for Satan—clearly identified earlier in the book of Revelation, and their power will be exerted over many nations and peoples.
A charismatic political leader will combine forces with a powerful religious leader to bring about a new world system. These powerful leaders will appear to handle the crisis and bring peace to the world, with religion playing a key role. Many atheists will become believers in a false god. It will be a time of great religious deception, prophesied to occur just before the return of Jesus Christ.
Revelation 13:11 describes what seems to be a lamb rising out of the earth, symbolising a great religious power, which appears to be harmless like a lamb, but speaks like a dragon—meaning its words are deceptive and alluring like Satan can be. This world religious leader will cause those who dwell on the earth to worship the secular beastly power. He will perform miracles in large public displays before many thousands with multiple millions watching on television around the world, convincing even the unbelieving sceptic. We are told: “He performs great signs, so that he even makes the fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast…” (Revelation 13:13-14).
Many atheists, agnostics and non-believers will become religious, and will be deceived into thinking God is working through these individuals. Their influence will continue for three and one half years, with policies and laws being made contrary to God’s teaching and biblical instruction. The name of God will be abused, and any church or body seeking to promote and guard God’s true teaching will be endangered. They will be singled out for persecution because they will recognize the diabolical unearthly power behind this behemoth and will not be taken in by its deceptive and alluring influence.
Satan, who possesses the Beast and the False Prophet, will even lure the world’s great armies to fight against the returning Jesus Christ (Revelation 13:4;16:13-14), but Christ will be victorious and atheism and religious deception will cease to exist forever. Satan has always corrupted the true teachings of God, and even today there are many false religions, opposing biblical truth and the true God. Now is the time for us to really get to know our Creator and to carefully study God’s word so that we will not be deceived.
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