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Note: This blog post is part of a series titled "The Work of the House of Joseph." To view all parts, click the link below.
On September 26, 2005 (after the conference in Denver), about 50-60 of us drove west across the mountains on Interstate 70 to Fruita, which is a town just west of Grand Junction, Colorado. To us, Grand Junction represented Mesopotamia, “the land between two rivers.” Mesopotamia was literally the junction between the Tigris and Euphrates. Grand Junction is at the confluence of the Colorado River and the Gunnison River.
Fruita is in a valley known for growing fruit. Fruita means “fruitful,” and carries the same meaning as Euphrates, Ephrata, and Ephraim. There we poured out the sixth bowl of wine and water into the Colorado River as a representation of the Euphrates, according to Revelation 16:12,
12 The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river, the Euphrates; and its water was dried up, so that the way would be prepared for the kings from the east.
I was glad that we did not have to travel to Iraq to pour out the bowls into the Euphrates River. Spiritual acts are highly representative and symbolic, so we were instructed to do this work at the Colorado River just outside of the town of Fruita. While pouring out the bowls, I was led to proclaim the word from Isaiah 44:27 KJV, “Be dry.”
Originally, this was a prophecy about Cyrus and how he dried up the Euphrates in order to capture the city of Babylon.
Gathering the Nations to Armageddon
Isaiah 44:26-28 and 45:1 says,
26 … It is I who says of Jerusalem, “She shall be inhabited!” And of the cities of Judah, “They shall be built.” And I will raise up her ruins again. 27 It is I who says to the depth of the sea [or river], “Be dried up!” And I will make your rivers dry. 28 It is I who says of Cyrus, “He is My shepherd! And he will perform all My desire.” And he declares of Jerusalem, “She will be built.” And of the temple, “Your foundation will be laid.” 1 Thus says the Lord to Cyrus, His anointed [messiah], whom I have taken by the right hand to subdue nations before him and to loose the loins of kings, to open doors before him so that gates will not be shut.
Isaiah prophesied of Cyrus a century before he conquered the city of Babylon and even prophesied the manner in which he took the city. Cyrus diverted the waters of the Euphrates so that his troops could enter the city through the dry river bed. There were gates on each side of the river, and at least one of them was open so that the troops could enter the city from the river. Hence, “gates will not be shut,” the prophet says.
While the city was being taken, Belshazzar, king (co-regent) of Babylon, was having a party. Suddenly the party was interrupted by the hand of God which wrote on the wall (Daniel 5:5). The king’s reaction is seen in Daniel 5:6 KJV,
6 Then the king’s countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another.
The king soiled his robes just as Isaiah 45:1 had prophesied.
The Kings from the East
Cyrus the Persian took the city and left Darius the Mede in charge (Daniel 5:31) for the next few years while Cyrus continued his conquests. These two were the original “kings from the east” (Revelation 16:12) that established the prophetic pattern for events in our own time when Mystery Babylon falls. So it is quite strange that most prophecy teachers today consider the coming of the kings from the east in a negative sense, as if these kings come to conquer us and enslave us. The fact is, God had raised up the kings from the east and had prepared their way by drying up the Euphrates River so that they could set the Judahites free!
Nonetheless, we often hear prophecy teachers warn the church about the rise of China or Russia or Iran, as if the “antichrist” is raising them up to bring harm to the church. No, the kings from the east are being raised up to set us free by overthrowing our slave masters—the rulers of Mystery Babylon. The West has been in captivity since the passage of the Federal Reserve Act in 1913. The Laodicean Church is the end-time church of the captivity.
God in His mercy is repeating the pattern prophesied by Isaiah and actually seen by Daniel when the kings from the east took the city of Babylon in 537 B.C. When Cyrus returned from his conquests, Darius returned to his own country, and Cyrus then issued his decree allowing the people of Judah to return to their homeland.
Prophecy teachers ought to study history before trying to teach biblical prophecy. But their Futurist view of prophecy tends to turn the kings from the east into enemies, which is contrary to the prophetic pattern established in the overthrow of ancient Babylon.
The Result of the Bowls
Revelation 16:13, 14, and 16 says,
13 And I saw coming out of the mouth of the dragon and out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet, three unclean spirits like frogs; 14 for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them together for the war for the great day of God, the Almighty… 16 And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon [Armageddon, KJV].
The immediate result of the sixth bowl is not so positive. In fact, the result appears negative. When the angel pours out the sixth bowl of wine, “three unclean spirits like frogs” come out of the mouths of the dragon, beast, and false prophet. These are “spirits of demons,” which are sent by the decrees of the dragon, beast, and false prophet to prepare for war. It is an attempt to prevent the Messiah (“Cyrus”) from coming to set up His Kingdom.
In other words, the sixth bowl of wine stirs up those who oppose Christ’s Kingdom. To those who fail to understand the plan of God, it looks like things are getting worse, not better! Some might even say that it would be better not to pour out the sixth bowl of wine.
This lack of understanding is reflected in Revelation 16:15,
15 (Behold, I am coming like a thief. Blessed is the one who stays awake and keeps his clothes, so that he will not walk about naked and men will not see his shame.)
His “coming like a thief” is not meant to convey a secret burglary, such as the rapturists often present to us. A thief in those days was a bandit who led a small army. They would swoop down just before dawn when everyone was sleeping peacefully, ransack the town, and then ride off into the hills. A good example of this is found in the old Arab story of Ali Baba the Forty Thieves. This is the type of scene Paul describes in 1 Thessalonians 5:2-6,
2 For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just as a thief in the night. 3 While they are saying, “Peace and safety!” then destruction will come upon them suddenly like birth pangs upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. 4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day should overtake you as a thief; 5 for you are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness; 6 so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober.
Paul describes people sleeping peacefully under the illusion of “peace and safety,” even as people are in their deepest sleep just before dawn. Paul says that we should not sleep, but be alert (watchful), so that these things do not overtake us by surprise. But if we misunderstand the divine plan or if we think that the kings from the east are coming to do us harm, we will find ourselves watching for the wrong things, and we will misinterpret the world events that we are seeing.
John couches the idea of being watchful in terms of the temple priests waiting for the Captain of the Temple or for the new course of priests to arrive. Alfred Edersheim’s book, The Temple, pages 148, 149 says this:
“The Temple guards were relieved by day, but not during the night, which the Romans divided into four, but the Jews, properly, into three watches, the fourth being really the morning watch. Hence, when the Lord said, ‘Blessed are those servants whom the lord when he cometh shall find watching,’ He expressly refers to the second and third watches as those of deepest sleep.
“During the night the ‘captain of the Temple’ made his rounds. On his approach the guards had to rise and salute him in a particular manner. Any guard found asleep when on duty was beaten, or his garments were set on fire—a punishment, as we know, actually awarded. Hence, the admonition to us who, as it were, are here on Temple guard, ‘Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments.’ . . .
“The priest whose duty it was to superintend the arrangements might any moment knock on the door and demand entrance. He came suddenly and unexpectedly, no one knew when. The Rabbis use almost the very words in which the Scripture describes the unexpected coming of the Master, when they say, ‘Sometimes he came at the cock-crowing, sometimes a little earlier, sometimes a little later. He came and knocked, and they opened to him. Then said he unto them, All ye who have washed, come and cast lots.”
Thus, we are called to be on Temple Watch, waiting for the Captain of the Temple to arrive. If we are caught sleeping, we are disqualified as overcomers and lose our “garments.” This speaks of losing out on the transfiguration, being clothed with the immortal body that is currently being held for us in the heavens, as Paul says in 2 Corinthians 5:1-4.
The sixth bowl was poured out in 2005, but at best this only marked the start of the call to gather at Armageddon. In other words, it did not immediately solve the problem. There are multiple layers of fulfillment that we may observe, if our eyes have been enlightened to understand God’s purpose in raising up the kings from the east.
First, Persia is now called Iran. While most think of Iran as an enemy, I believe that Iran will prove to be our friend. It may be that this will come about after a regime change, or perhaps the Spirit of God will be poured out upon the people in Iran, which will change the political atmosphere. Right now, the church in Iran is one of the fastest-growing churches in the world. It has been said that the Ayatollah Khomeini was the greatest Christian evangelist of all time, because he caused huge numbers of Iranian Muslims to become disillusioned with Islam.
We should watch Iran, because it is literally Persia from which Cyrus came to overthrow Babylon and allow the Judahites to return to Jerusalem.
On another level, we should watch China and Russia, which seem to be fulfilling the prophecy of the kings from the east as well. Most Christians think of them as the enemy, but I believe God has raised them up as well to overthrow Mystery Babylon. This view, of course, runs contrary to news reports that we see with our physical eyes and our carnal understanding. But when we know the divine plan, it is clear that God is using China and Russia in ways that even they do not understand.
We should recognize their threat, of course, but at the same time we ought to know that God is sovereign over all the nations. Although the word has gone out from the mouth of the dragon, beast, and false prophet to prepare for war (“Armageddon”), God is working all things together for His purposes.
On still another level, we see prophets such as Kim Clement prophesying as early as 2007 about the rise of an American president whom God was raising up to stir up trouble and controversy. Other prophets openly refer to Donald Trump as a type of Cyrus. The Israelis even minted a silver coin bearing the images of Cyrus and Trump.
All of these prophetic types of Cyrus and the kings from the east have stirred up controversy, even as Revelation 16 indicates. Regardless, if we have eyes to see, and if we believe that pouring out the sixth bowl of wine upon Babylon was actually a good thing in spite of the controversy, then we will not fall asleep on Temple Watch and lose our spiritual clothing.
Instead, we will stay “awake” (Revelation 16:15). It is of particular interest to us today that both sides of the present controversy claim to be “awake.” The Deep State supporters have their “Woke” movement; the Christian Patriot movement has its “Great Awakening.” Either way, both sides are proclaiming the divine plan, which will be fulfilled when the Holy Spirit is poured out.
In my view, the present-day controversy is the direct result of pouring out the sixth bowl of wine and water in the Euphrates on September 26, 2005. When we did this at Fruita, we did not cause anything to happen. We provided an earthly witness to signify our agreement with the heavenly action taken by the sixth angel. Hence, we should not complain when our prayer-decree was answered.
Note: This blog post is part of a series titled "The Work of the House of Joseph." To view all parts, click the link below.