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The Apocalypse:
An Exegesis

by Robert Riggs

1998-12
                               DISCLAIMER

     The opinions and interpretations expressed in this book are
strictly those of the author, and do not represent official
opinions or interpretations of any agency of the Bahá'í
Administrative Order.


                                
                                FOREWORD

     The original exegesis of the Apocalypse, written by the
author, was reviewed by the Bahá'í Universal House of Justice and
was approved by the National Spiritual Assembly of the United
States. It was published and copyrighted by Philosophical Library
of New York in 1981 under the title THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED.
Since its publication, the publisher has gone out of business and
the work is out of print. There have been many requests for
copies of THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED that could not be satisfied.  
     This present work represents an attempt to overcome some of
the errors and valid criticisms of the original work and to
incorporate new knowledge that the author has acquired over the
past fifteen years. It includes several additions and
modifications that, in the author's opinion, do not violate the
spirit of the original work. However, the present work has not
been presented for review to the National Spiritual Assembly of
the United States. The reader is therefore advised to be critical
of the opinions and interpretations expressed herein and to
reject any that seem at variance with his own beliefs as a
Bahá'í. The author has made an attempt to point out all
significant divergences between the original work and this new
work. 
     Every reasonable attempt has been made to make the new
exegesis free of copyright entanglements by alterations in the
original wording, by the deletion of major portions of the
original work, and by the introduction of new material. As far as
the author is concerned, the reader is permitted to make
duplicate copies and to distribute them, provided (1) that he/she
makes no attempt to obtain a copyright, and (2) that he/she does
not realize a monetary profit, and (3) that the ENTIRE work,
including this FOREWORD, is reproduced and distributed, and (4)
that no alterations and/or additions to the text are to be
made without the author's approval. Sections of the text of this
work up to 1,000 words in length may be quoted and/or reprinted
for the purposes of criticism or commentary without the express
permission of the author, provided the source(s) of the quote(s)
is/are given.

     In BAHA'I NEWS, No. 77, September 1933, Shoghi Effendi tells
us that only the words of 'Abdu'l-Bahá [regarding biblical
exegesis] are truly authoritative, but that if his statements
cannot be discovered, we are free to tentatively accept the
opinions of scholars.


                              
                              INTRODUCTION
                                    
PREFACE

     'Abdu'l-Bahá has told us that there are many meanings to
every word of the Apocalypse. {1} It is, therefore, axiomatic
that this effort does not reveal all the meanings and nuances
latent in this astonishing Book. Nor do I make apologies for my
first effort, THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED, published over fifteen
years ago. At that time, it was the best that I could achieve.
Since then, hopefully, I have gained some added knowledge and 
new insights. This new effort may remedy some of the weaknesses
of my earlier work.
     It is my hope and wish, as it was fifteen years ago, that
this work will inspire other Bahá'í commentators and scholars to
continue the work of exegesis, not only of the Apocalypse, but of
other Sacred Writings. The Books are unsealed- it is simply a
matter of applying one's mind to uncovering the precious jewels
that once lay hidden beneath the dross that millennia of 'idle
fancies and vain imaginings' have placed over them.
     The discussion, for the most part, will be informal. Unless
otherwise noted, the King James Version (KJV) will be used, but
with occasional references to the REVISED ENGLISH BIBLE (REB),
the REVISED STANDARD VERSION (RSV), and the NEW INTERNATIONAL
VERSION (NIV). Actually, there are no irreconcilable
disagreements between these versions, but certain nuances may
affect the interpretation. 
     To avoid cluttering up the text, most biblical and other
references will be appended at the end of the book. Notes will be
identified by braces around the number; for example {3} means
Note number 3. Also I have made an effort, in many cases, to
distinguish my own comments with square brackets: [comment].
Hopefully, this will reduce some of the confusion between
commentary and text, but the reader is always invited to study
the biblical text for himself to see if he agrees. 
     The letters 'BH' will stand for 'Bahá'u'lláh,' the letters
'AB' will stand for ''Abdu'l-Bahá,' the letters 'SE' will stand
for 'Shoghi Effendi.' For example, the claim of Bahá'u'lláh that
He manifests the 'Beginning and the End...,' etc. will be
identified as '-BH: GWB, pp 54, 168', meaning that the words are
attributed to Bahá'u'lláh, and can be found in GLEANINGS FROM THE
WRITINGS OF BAHA'U'LLAH, pages 54 and 168. 

AN OPTION FOR THE READER

     Bahá'ís are neither numerologists nor astrologers; nor do
they indulge in any occult practices, unless prayer and
meditation be considered 'occult.' However, Bahá'ís do recognize
that the Manifestations have employed number and astrological
symbolism in the Sacred Writings, sometimes to conceal, at other
times to reveal, spiritual realities.
     Ancient esoterica is not everyone's strong suit. The
paragraphs that follow may require some careful study by the
uninitiated.  Unless one has a penchant for it, I suggest that
the reader move on to Chapter 1 and return to this Introduction
as he/she deems necessary.
 
ASTROLOGICAL SYMBOLISM

     This is probably the most difficult subject for the casual
reader to understand. The perplexed are invited to read HAMLET'S
MILL, a classic exposition of the subject co-authored by the
great de Santillana, a professor of philosophy at MIT when I took
his course in the forties. Also, if one is fortunate enough to
find a copy, I recommend ASTRONOMY by Dr. Arthur M. Harding. This
book was the first to open my eyes to the inescapable conclusion
that the Bible is adorned with astrological symbolism. But only
'Abdu'l-Bahá seems to have recognized that astrological symbolism
is absolutely essential for an understanding of the Apocalypse. 
     Because it is essential, I am forced to present a brief
introduction to the subject, knowing full well that the serious
reader will have to pursue the subject elsewhere.

     According to ancient astrological theory, the fixed stars
were located on an enormous crystalline 'celestial sphere.' A
band of stars demarcated the region on the celestial sphere
through which travelled the sun and the other six known planets
('wanderers'). This band was called the zodiac ('circle of
beasts'), and consisted of 12 constellations of fixed stars. The
names of the twelve constellations or 'signs' were and are still
called:

ZODIACAL ORDER; SIGN OR CONSTELLATION; ENGLISH NAME

1;  Aries;  Ram
2;  Taurus;  Bull
3;  Gemini;  Twins
4;  Cancer;  Crab
5;  Leo;  Lion
6;  Virgo;  Virgin
7;  Libra;  Scales
8;  Scorpio;  Scorpion
9;  Sagittarius;  Archer
10;  Capricornus;  Goat
11;  Aquarius;  Water Bearer
12;  Pisces;  Fishes
 
     The zodiac was considered to be the 'true earth.' The stars
and planets that inhabited the true earth were called the 'lords
of time,' the originators of history, with earthbound man playing
the role of mere spectators to 'earthshaking' cosmic events. 
     Since the earth is tilted on its axis, we have the four
seasons of the year, caused by the angle at which the sunlight
reaches the earth. The more nearly overhead the sun appears at
noon, the hotter the day.  During the summertime, the sunlight
reaches the earth at a steep angle; during wintertime, the
sunlight reaches the earth at a shallow angle. 
     The four seasons are related to the four 'corners' or
'pillars' of the sky. These 'pillars' are the constellations in
the zodiac where the sun is located at the equinoxes and
solstices. The equinoxes are the two events during the year when
the days and nights are of equal duration, roughly March 21, the
Spring equinox, and September 21, the Fall equinox. The two
solstices are the events when the day is longest and shortest,
roughly June 21, the Summer solstice, and December 21, the Winter
solstice.
     If one connects the 'four corners' of the zodiac with
imaginary straight lines, one obtains the 'square earth.'
     At first thought, it would seem that the four corners of the
square earth should remain fixed throughout all eternity. Alas,
this is an error. Actually, since the earth rotates on its axis,
it is subject to what is called the 'gyroscopic precession
effect.' Everyone who has spun a toy top has witnessed the
gyroscopic precession effect that causes a tilted top to
'precess' about its vertical axis at a relatively slow rate.
Since the earth is tilted on its axis, it too precesses. The rate
is very slow, one complete cycle of precession requiring roughly
25-thousand years.
     A little reflection should convince the reader that the
gyroscopic precession effect will cause the equinoxes and
solstices to precess also, with the dawning place of the sun at,
say, the Spring equinox, to move along the zodiac. This movement
is called the Precession of the Equinoxes. 
     The 12 signs of the zodiac are envisioned as 12 'doors' or
'houses.' Because of the Precession,  the sun enters a different
'house' at springtime about once per 2-thousand years and causes
us to enter a new astrological 'Age.' The phenomenon was well
known to the ancient astrologers, and it was used as a title of
the Age of human history in which one lived. If the sun rose in
Aries at the Spring equinox, it was called the Age of ARIES. If
the Spring equinox was in Pisces, it was called the Age of
PISCES, etc. Actually, every astrological Age had a double name,
e.g. ARIES-Libra, PISCES-Virgo, etc. The double name comes from
the names of the constellations or 'signs' where the sun rises at
both the SPRING and Fall seasons of the year. Modern astrologers
say that we are now entering the Age of AQUARIUS-Leo or Leo-
AQUARIUS.  
     This isn't quite the whole story, since the Precession will
cause the sun to complete the whole 'circle of beasts' and to
reappear in Aries at Springtime after a 'time circle' of about
25-thousand years. Accustomed as we are in the post-Newtonian
world to open-ended 'linear time,' the ancient concept of circles
('infinities') of time is difficult to grasp. However,
mind-boggling Bahá'í Era concepts such as the relativity of time,
black holes, and oscillating universes, are forcing us to accept
the validity of such paradoxes, at least in the physical realm.
Apparently, the ancient astrologers held analogous concepts
applicable to the realm of the spirit.
     The numerical order of the Precession is opposite to the
zodiacal order. That is, the constellation seems to gradually lag
behind the equinoxes. For example, during the Age of Pisces, the
Spring equinox was in Pisces, the twelfth sign in the zodiacal
order. Now the Spring equinox occurs in Aquarius, the eleventh
sign in the zodiacal order. This fact will become significant in
later chapters. 
     
     Next, we consider some astrological symbolism in the Book of
Genesis.  Genesis 49 is a word picture describing the signs of
the zodiac and are correlated with the names of the 12 tribes:

Reuben, 'boiling over with water,' is Aquarius (the Water Bearer)
Simeon and Levi, 'the brethren,' are Gemini (the Twins)
Judah,'the lion's whelp,' is Leo (the Lion)
Zebulon, 'who shall dwell at the beach of the sea,' is Pisces
     (the Fishes)
Issachar, 'a gelded donkey lying down in the cattle pens (REB),'
     is Taurus (the Bull)
Dan, 'a serpent in the way,' is Scorpio (the Scorpion)
Gad, 'a troop shall press upon him; but he shall press upon their
     heel,' is Aries (the Ram). [Aries, being the first sign of
     the zodiac, 'presses upon their heel' in the circular
     zodiac.]
Asher, 'the weigher of bread,' is Libra (the Scales)
Nephtali, 'a hind let loose,' is Capricorn (the Goat)
Joseph, 'whose bow abides in strength,' is Sagittarius (the
     Archer)
Benjamin, 'ravening as a wolf, devouring his prey by morning,
     dividing the spoil at night,' is Cancer (the Crab)

     The 12 sons have been named but one sign remains- Virgo (the
Virgin). This sign is 'veiled,' and is correlated with Dinah,
Jacob's daughter (Gen 30:21).
     
     In addition to the names 'Pisces,' etc., the ancient Jewish
astrologers named the signs of the zodiac after the twelve tribes
in the manner suggested in Genesis. Thus the name of the first
sign was 'Gad/Aries'; the second sign was 'Issachar/Taurus', etc.

     It is hoped that this brief discussion will permit the
reader to move on. An effort will be made to elaborate on the
subject as the Apocalypse unfolds.

LETTER-NUMBER MYSTICISM

Gematria

     Gematria is the name given to one form of letter-number
mysticism that was extensively used in ancient mystical
literature. It flows naturally from the fact that ordinary
letters were used BOTH as letters and as numbers. The result was
that some numbers would spell significant words, and some words
had significant numerical values. Gematria was used in the Greek,
Hebrew, and Arabic languages. The letters with their numerical
equivalents are given in the following Table:

Numbers 1 through 9:

1;  2;  3;  4;  5;  6;  7;  8;  9:

Greek: 
alpha;  beta;  gamma;  delta;  epsilon;  stigma*;  zeta; eta; 
     theta 

Hebrew: 
aleph;  beth;  ghimmel;  dallet;  hay;  waw;  zayn;  hayt;  tayt

Arabic: 
alif, hamza;  beh;  jim;  dal;  ha;  waw;  ze;  he;  ta 

Numbers 10 through 90:

10;  20;  30;  40;  50;  60;  70;  80;  90:

Greek: 
iota;  kappa;  lambda;  mu;  nu;  xi;  omicron;  pi;  goppa*

Hebrew:
yod;  khaf;  lammed;  mem;  noun;  sammekh;  ayn;  phay;  tsadde

Arabic:
ye;  kef;  lam;  mim;  nun;  sin;  ain;  fe;  sad

Numbers 100 through 900:

100;  200;  300;  400;  500;  600;  700;  800;  900:

Greek:
rho;  sigma;  tau;  upsilon;  phi;  chi;  psi;  omega;  sampi*

Hebrew:
qof;  raysh;  sheen;  tay;  final khaf;  final mem;  final noun; 
     final phay;  final tsadde

Arabic:
qaf;  re;  shin;  te;  se;  khe;  zai;  dad;  za


Number 1000:

Greek:
(none)

Hebrew:
large aleph

Arabic:
ghain

* The Greek letters stigma, goppa and sampi were used only in
numerical work. In literary works, the numerical values 6, 90,
and 900 were generated by a combination of other letters.  

     By 'literal value' I mean the gematrical value. It is
obtained by totaling the numerical values of the letters in the
word or phrase. For example, the Greek letter 'Alpha' has the
value 1. The Greek letter 'Omega' has the value 800. Therefore
'the Alpha and the Omega' has the literal value of 801.
     An important case is the name Bahá'. In Arabic it is spelled 
'Beh, alif, ha, hamza.' Its literal value is (2 + 1 + 5 + 1) = 9.
     The fundamental idea of gematria is explained by Plato in
his CRATYLOS: the force of a name is to found in its numerical
value, while words and phrases of the same value may be
substituted without loss of meaning.

     By 'archetypal value' I mean the value obtained by
'cabalistic contraction.' It is obtained by successively adding
the numerical components of a number until a single digit is
obtained. For example, the archetypal value of 801 is (8 + 0 + 1)
= 9. Another example: the  archetypal value of 7,637 is obtained
by first adding  (7 + 6 + 3 + 7) to obtain 23. Then add the
resulting numerical components (2 + 3) to obtain 5. Thus the
archetypal value of 7,637 is 5. 

SOME NUMEROLOGY

     The significance of the numbers Four and Seven should be
discussed very briefly to better understand why these two numbers
were used extensively in ancient sacred literature.
     Among the ancients, the Four was considered representative
of the World of Man. For example, there were 4 'elements' (fire,
air, earth, water); 4 societal levels (man, village, city,
nation); 4 seasons (spring, summer, fall, winter), 4 eras of
human growth (infancy, youth, maturity, old age); and 4 eras of
historical growth (gold, silver, bronze, iron). The list goes on. 
Today, we recognize, e.g., that 4 colors are needed to color a
political map (without colonies) {4}, and, essentially, anything
that can be 'ex-plained' (i.e. 'taught from a plane surface')
through appropriate definitions, can be reduced to 4 initial
categories. 
     Seven was a highly spiritual number, the union (sum) of
heaven (3) and earth (4). Some ancients considered 7 to be the
'number of opportunity.' {5} As a symbol of opportunity, recall
that animals entered Noah's ark by sevens. {6} Some considered 7
to be the 'number of expiation and sacrifice.' For example, Jacob
spent 7 years in servitude for Leah and 7 more years for Rachel
{7}; the Ark of the Covenant was in the land of the Philistines
for 7 months {8}; and the Israelites were in bondage for 7
decades. {9} As the number of 'trial and punishment,' recall that
7 years was the legal limit of slavery under Mosaic law. Again
the list goes on, and the influence of the Four and the Seven
appears to have been felt throughout the entire ancient world. 


TRIANGULAR VALUE

     The 'triangular value' of a number is obtained by summing
all the numbers 'contained' in a number. For example, the
triangular value of 4 is (1 + 2 + 3 + 4) = the decade 10. In the
ancient Pythagorean and Hebraic schools, the number 4 was highly
regarded because it contained all the numbers necessary to create
the decade. And since all numbers higher than 9 were considered
to be emanations of the archetypal numbers 1 through 9, then the
4 was therefore a 'primal number' from which all other numbers
could be generated. Even today we can see evidence of the ancient
canon in the 4 points of the Christian Cross, the 4 Central
Apostles, the Squared Circle {2}, etc.

KLIMA

     'Klima' was an extension of the concept of the triangular
value into the realm of letter-mysticism. In particular, certain
4-letter words were highly regarded as 'generators' from which
other entities could be derived.  An important example is the
Tetragrammaton 'YHWH' (Jehovah).
     To make use of this principle, the 4 letters contained
within the word are first arranged into a triangle:

     Y
     YH
     YHW
     YHWH

     Next, we assign the gematrical values  to the combinations
of letters. By the Hebrew gematria, the Y (Yod) has the value 10;
the H (Hay) has the value 5; the W (Waw) has the value 6.
Therefore, the Tetragrammaton has the values:

     10                  Sum = 10
     10, 5               Sum = 15
     10, 5, 6            Sum = 21
     10, 5, 6, 5         Sum = 26
                         
     Now we make use of the fundamental idea of gematria as
explained above: the force of a name is to found in its numerical
value, while words and phrases of the same value may be
substituted without loss of meaning. In this case, any word or
phrase that has the values 10, 15, 21, or 26 can be substituted
for a row of the Tetragrammaton. Other combinations are also
valid. In particular, 'Adam' has the value 45 while 'Eve' has the
value 15. Thus Adam can be derived by summing the four tens in
the first column plus the 5 in the last column; Eve can be
derived by summing the three fives in the second column. Other
important numbers are immediately evident, such as the 40 (= the
years in the wilderness, etc.) in the first column, the 12 (= the
signs of the zodiac, the sons of Jacob, etc.) in the third
column. The 'Number of Man' {3} is Five and can be seen in the
fourth column.
     The numerologically important number 72 is the value
obtained by the total klima of YHWH, that is, by summing the
numbers (10 + 15 + 21 +26). It is related to the 'Divided Name of
YHWH' obtained from Exodus 14 verses 19, 20, 21. Each of these
verses has 72 letters in the Hebrew. Writing these three verses
one above the other, verse 19 right to left, verse 20 left to
right, and verse 21 right to left, produces 72-three letter names
of God. Also called the 'Schemhamphoras.'

PROPHETIC TIME SCALES

     The following temporal terms are found in prophetic biblical
writings:

     A 'prophetic day' is usually taken as a year. Most biblical
scholars justify this definition by quoting Numbers 14:34 and
Ezekiel 4:6, in which it is said that a day of the Lord is equal
to a year.  But in recognizing that a number-archetype may be
involved, 'one' prophetic day may equal 1 year, or 1 decade, or 1
century, or 1 millennium {10}, etc. Usually, calendar years are
intended, but in one instance (11:8-10), the 'day' is a
'prophetic year' or a 'time' (see below). 

     An 'evening and a morning' is taken as an EXACT 'prophetic
day.' The justification for this definition is that it works well
in the one place it is encountered: Daniel 8:13.

     A 'prophetic week' is usually taken as seven calendar years.
But again, if 'seven prophetic days' are intended, it might mean
7 years, or 7 decades, or 7 centuries, or 7 millennia, etc.

     A 'prophetic' month is taken as 30 calendar years. The 30
day month can be inferred by correlating Genesis 7:11, 24, and
8:4.

     A 'prophetic year' is taken as 360 calendar years. It is
based on the 360 day calendar of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt.
The use of the 360 day calendar in biblical allegory can be
inferred by correlating the dates in Genesis 7:11, 24, and 8:4.

     A 'time' is taken as 360 years. (The word 'time' is from the
Hebrew 'mowed,' conventionally a year of calendar time, but more
generally, a 'fixed time' or season.) The length of the year can
be inferred from the context, but is usually a lunar year. The
justification for this definition of the word 'time' is (1) the
use of the lunar calendar in the ancient Near East, and (2) to
allow a calendar year for each 'day' of the 360-day 'prophetic
year.'

     The word 'times' is taken as 2 'times,' that is, 720 lunar
years.  The justification for this definition is the dual form of
the Hebrew word in Daniel 12:7 in which 'times' is clearly 2
'times.'

     A 'lunar year' is the time required for 12 lunations, equal
to 354.367 days.

     A solar year is the time between equinoxes or solstices,
equal to 365.242 days.

     There are 1.03069 lunar years in a solar year.

A NOTE CONCERNING TITLES

       The epithet 'messiah' (Hebrew 'mashiyach') means
'anointed,' a title applied to kings, priests, and other
potentates in the Hebrew world. Originally, the term 'messiah'
simply meant 'ruler.' In later Hebrew history, the term 'Messiah'
became identified with the 'Messiah' of the Age of Redemption.
The word is found in Daniel 9:25, 26 where it is widely
considered a prophecy of the Advent of Jesus among both Christian
and Bahá'í commentators.
      The word 'Messias,' found in John 1:41 and 4:25, is a Greek
spelling of 'Messiah.'
      The epithet 'Christ' (Greek 'Christos') is the Greek
equivalent of 'Messiah' and also means 'Anointed.'
      The word 'Lord,' in most of the Old Testament, means
'Jehovah.'
      In Genesis 15:2, 8 and 18:3, the word 'Lord' is the Hebrew
'Adown,' meaning 'Sovereign.'
      Daniel uses the word 'Lord' in various forms: 'Adown,'
'Adonay,' and 'Jehovah,' where 'Adonay' is an emphatic form of
'Adown.'  Daniel 2:47 uses the epithet 'Lord of kings,' where 
'Lord' is the Chaldean 'Mare,' a 'domineering Master.'
      All of the New Testament, except Revelation 6:10, uses the
word 'Lord' = Greek 'Kyrios,' meaning 'supreme in authority, ' a
'controller.'  This was the most popular epithet for Jesus in the
early Christian world and likened him to a mystery deity.      
Revelation 6:10 uses the word 'Lord' = Greek 'Despotes.' an
     'Absolute Ruler.'
      'King' in most of the Old Testament is the Hebrew 'melek' =
'king.' Daniel uses the Chaldean form of 'melek' to refer to the
king of the Chaldeans.
      'King' in the New Testament is from the Greek 'basileios' =
'king.'  The word is found in Matthew 27:11-42; Mark 15:2, 9-32; 
Luke 19:38,  23:2, 37-38;  John 1:49,  12:13-15,  18:33-39, 
19:3, 14-21. Since all 'kings,' among other epithets, bore the
title 'anointed,' the word 'basileios' implied a higher rank than
'christos.' 
     In 1 Timothy 6:15,  Paul uses the epithet 'King of kings and
Lord of lords' in connection with the Second Coming of Christ,
but apparently reserves the title for the Supreme Being.
      In Revelation 17:14, we find the epithet 'Lord of lords,
and King of kings.'  In Revelation 19:16 we find the epithet
reversed and capitalized: 'KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.' 
The reversing of the epithet suggests that the 'Lamb'  of 17:14
is not the same Figure as 'Faithful and True' of verse 19:16.  In
fact, 17:14 refers to the Bab while 19:16 refers to Bahá'u'lláh.
Collectively, they are the 'Twin Manifestation.' (In the context
of astrological symbolism, Gemini opens the door to the future
and is the 'Alpha' or 'Beginning.'  Gemini also closes the door
to the past and is the 'Omega' or 'Ending.' Thus the 'Alpha' is
the 'twin' of the 'Omega.')    
   
                                  
                      CHAPTER 1- THE GREATEST NAME


SYNOPSIS:

     The Book opens with a brief preface explaining that the
Revelation is from Jesus Christ and is delivered by his angel to
John. The events in the prophecy are to commence very soon, but
the time duration of the prophecy is not specified. [The date of
the Revelation is circa 104 CE.]
     John first relays a message of grace and peace to the 7
Divinely revealed Churches [Faiths] of the region called 'Asia,'
a region roughly equivalent to the modern Middle East. Each of
the 7 Churches is under the aegis of a Spirit, the prophetic
spirit of a Divine Revelator, who is seated before the heavenly
throne. 
     The 7 Spirits also represent the name 'Bahá'u'lláh' and are
Manifestations of the single Spirit of Bahá'u'lláh. Additionally,
the 7 Spirits relate to the 7 planets, the 'gods' that
astrologers considered to be the 'Executors of the Divine Will.'
     Jesus reveals some of his roles, while John warns that "he 
will come with clouds" [obscuring veils, trouble, divine mercy,
etc.]. When he does return, all those with [spiritual] eyes will
"see" him and realize he has been re-Manifested.
     The Lord then reveals that He is the "Alpha" and the
"Omega," which has the archetypal value of 9. He is the
"beginning"and the "ending," suggesting among other things, that
his name is hidden in the first and last words of the Revelation
("Apocalypse" and "Amen"), both of which have an archetypal value
of 9. He also reveals for the first of 9-times that He is the
"Pantocrator."
     John is then commanded by a loud trumpet-like voice to write
down in a book what he "sees" and send it to the 7 Churches of
Asia:  Sabaean [Peace], Jewish [Benevolence}, Hindu [Law],
Zoroastrian [Light], Buddhist [Truth], Christian [Brotherly
Love], and Muslim [Justice]. Turning to see the speaker of the
voice, he sees Bahá'u'lláh standing amidst 7 golden candlesticks.
He holds 7 stars in his right hand, and explains that he is the
"first and the last," etc.. He also reveals that he has the "keys
of hell and death" [the power of judgement]. 
     John is again commanded to "write down" what he sees. The 7
"stars" are revealed to be the "angels" [Revelators] of the 7
Churches. The 7 stars equate to the planetary 'gods.' The 7 stars
also represent the name 'Husayn-'Ali, the proper name of
Bahá'u'lláh. Furthermore, the 7 "candlesticks" are revealed to be
the 7 Churches. The word picture that John writes down is thereby
revealed to be a form of the Greatest Name Emblem of the Bahá'í
Faith.


PREFACE:

The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew
unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he
sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who
bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus
Christ, and of all things he saw. Blessed is he that readeth, and
they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things
which are written therein: for the time is at hand. -Rev. 1:1-3 

     Modern translations read "the time is at hand," etc. as
meaning that the events of the prophecy are to start unfolding in
the near future. The total duration of the prophecy is not
defined by these verses, and in fact will span about 19
centuries.

SALUTATION:

John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you
and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to
come; and from the seven Spirits which are before the throne; -
Rev 1:4 

     The term 'Asia' could refer to either the Roman Province of
Asia or to the larger Region of continental Asia. The Roman
province of Asia was limited to modern Asia Minor. In the early
centuries CE, the Region of Asia included India and Arabia, but
did not include modern Asiatic Russia or the Far East.
     If one interprets it as the Province, then the 7 churches
which, for some reason, Jesus addresses this mighty Book, have a
literal meaning that is obvious. If one enlarges the scope of the
term 'Asia' to include the whole Region, then the prophecy has a
broader, more profound meaning. In the broader sense, the 7
Churches of Asia then represent those religions of Asia and of
the Prophetic Cycle {1} that will have living followers at the
Advent of Bahá'u'lláh.
     The 7 Spirits before the throne also has multiple meanings.
The names 'Bahá'u'lláh' and 'Husayn-'Ali' (the proper name of
Bahá'u'lláh) both have seven letters in Arabic, and the Master,
'Abdu'l-Bahá {2} has given the name 'Bahá'u'lláh' as one meaning
of the 7 Spirits. It should be pointed out that the 7 Spirits
also have an astrological significance that will become evident
later on.
     "Him which is, which was, and which is to come" is one name
for the Lord God and derives from ancient Jewish mysticism. The
phrase implies a cyclicity of time that is related to
astrological Ages.  Another possible meaning of the phrase "Him
which is, which was, and which is to come" is God as His
recurring Manifestations.
     Bahá'u'lláh has explained to us that God educates mankind in
phases. Each phase is approximately a thousand years in duration
and is ushered in by a Revelator who holds undisputed sway during
the Age.
     Before 1844 CE there were 7 revealed monotheistic Faiths in
the Region known as Asia. They were:

FAITH;  REVELATOR
 
Sabaean;  Unknown
Jewish;  Moses
Hindu;  Krishna 
Zoroastrian;  Zoroaster (Zarathustra)
Buddhist;  Gautama Buddha
Christian;  Jesus Christ
Muslim;  Muhammad

     If we include the Babi and Bahá'í Faiths revealed after 1844 
the list has 9 members. The Apocalypse is addressed to the 7
Divinely revealed Faiths of the Region of Asia and reveals the
Advents of the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh.
     Another meaning of the Jewish Menorah may be revealed here.
The 7 candlesticks of the Menorah are named Peace, Benevolence,
Justice, Light, Truth, Brotherly Love, and Harmony [or Law?]. It
will become evident that their names are probably correlated with
the names of the 7 Churches.

And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first
begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth.
Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own
blood, And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his
Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. -
Rev 1:5-6

     The message is also from Jesus Christ, [who, incidentally,
was the "morning star" (verse 22:16) of the astrological Age of
Pisces]. Jesus Christ is a faithful witness that these things
will come to pass. Jesus was the first to be raised from the
spiritually dead during his ministry.{3} He is the spiritual
Prince of the kings and rulers of the earth. By sacrificing his
blood (spiritual life-force) Jesus raised the early Christians
from spiritual death. 
     In the symbolism of the Apocalypse, such terms as 'death'
and 'life' usually refer to 'spiritual death,' etc. ('Leave the
dead to bury their dead.'{4}) Death means to be devoid of
spiritual awareness and to be without belief in God; sleep means
the slumber of heedlessness, to be temporarily devoid of
spiritual awareness; life means to have entered the paradise of
the love of God.
     Sin can have various aspects: disobeying God's laws as
revealed by His Manifestation; enslavement to animal passions and
motivations; attachment to the contingent world of attributes and
duality.

HE WILL COME WITH CLOUDS: 

Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and
they also which pierced him; and all kindreds of the earth shall
wail because of him. Even so. Amen. -Rev 1:7

     Again, 'spiritual' should be associated with the word
'eyes.' Eventually, everyone with spiritual vision will know that
the Christ has been re-Manifested. Whether one blames the Jews,
or the Romans, or both for the Crucifixion is irrelevant, since
the spiritually astute of every nation will become aware. The
"wailing" of the nations reflects the sorrow experienced because
of their lost opportunity to recognize and obey him. 
     Clouds means troubles and a veil between man and heaven.
Because the Manifestation comes in a human body and with human
limitations, such things cast doubts in men's minds and act as
veils. Clouds can also symbolize Divine mercy, the annulment of
counter-productive laws, the abrogation of former Dispensations,
and the repeal of useless rituals and customs. "I have come in
the shadows of the clouds of glory, and am invested by God with
invincible sovereignty." -BH {5}
     Jesus sometimes referred to those who have eyes and yet do
not see.{6} Bahá'u'lláh explains that the sincere seeker will be
rewarded with a new eye, a new ear, a new heart, and a new
mind.{7}
     The fact that there will be a delay between his appearance
on earth and his eventual acceptance by the peoples of the
existing spiritual generation is made clear in Luke and Isaiah.
{8} The term 'generation' (Greek 'genea') as used in Luke and
elsewhere has among its meanings 'an historic age.' In
allegorical usage, a generation is a Day of Creation or a Lord's
Day. The word may be modeled after the Hebrew word 'olam,'
meaning an 'infinity' or 'world.'

THE ALPHA AND OMEGA INTRODUCES HIMSELF:

I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the
Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the
Almighty. -Rev 1:8

     The phrase "Alpha and Omega" has many meanings. Most
succinctly, it refers to The Word of God {9}, including the
appearance of the Lord God as His successive Manifestations. One
can also perceive another significance to the phrase, indicating
that every Manifestation is the beginning of the new Age and the
ending of the former Age. In the Apocalypse, the phrase refers
specifically to Bahá'u'lláh.{10}
     The sum of the letters "Alpha" and "Omega" has a literal
value of either 801 or twice-666, depending upon the Greek
version of the text. In either case, the archetypal value is 9,
the Number of Bahá'. Bahá'u'lláh used the number 9 as a seal,
since the name Bahá' has the literal value of 9 by the Arabic
gematria.
     The "beginning and the ending" is another clue to the
identity of the speaker. It suggests that we investigate the
beginning and ending words of the Book. These words, in the Greek
text, are "Apocalypse" and "Amen." The first word has the literal
value of 1512 and an archetypal value of 9; the last word has the
literal value of 99, which also has an archetypal value of 9.
     Furthermore, the Greek word for 'Beginning' is 'Arche' which
has a literal value of 709; the Greek word for 'Ending' is
'Telos' which has a literal value of 605. The sum of these two
values is 1314, which also has an archetypal value of 9.
     Isaiah {11} explains that both God and His Redeemer, the
Lord of Hosts, are the First and the Last. Other Old Testament
passages identify the Latter Day Redeemer or Ransomer as the Lord
of Hosts, the Holy One of Israel, and the King of Glory (=
Bahá').{12} Bahá'u'lláh explains that he is both the Beginning
and the End, and both Stillness and Motion. {13}
     His Holiness Bahá'u'lláh bears many titles, some of which
have been given him by other Manifestations and prophets and are
ascribed to Bahá'u'lláh by those Bahá'ís who have entered by
another faith. Some examples:

Jewish- Lord of Hosts, King of Glory, the Holy One of Israel
Hindu- Tenth Avatar, Immaculate Manifestation of Krishna, Kalki,
     Vishnu Yasha
Buddhist- Fifth Buddha, Buddha Maitreye
Christian- Spirit of Truth, Return of Christ
Zoroastrian- Shah Bahram
Muslim- The Great Announcement, Return of Christ, Return of Imam
     Husayn
Babi- Essence of Being, Remnant of God, Omnipotent Master,
     Crimson all-encompassing Light

     Other titles have been ascribed by Bahá'u'lláh to Himself in
order to explain his mission to mankind. Among these are: 
Ancient of Days, Voice From the Burning Bush, Well Spring of
Revelation, Day Star of Divine Revelation, Sun of Truth, Bird of
the Throne.
     For the first of 9-times in the Apocalypse, verse 8
identifies the Alpha and Omega as the Almighty, that is, 'The
Pantocrator.'

JOHN IS COMMANDED TO WRITE THE APOCALYPSE:

I John who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation,
and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle
that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony
of Jesus Christ. I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard
behind me a great voice as of a trumpet. Saying, I am Alpha and
Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest write in a
book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto
Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira,
and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea. -Rev
1:9-11

     The names of the 7 Churches of Asia represent 7 Divinely
revealed Faiths. While the prejudiced reader of imperial Rome
might have been tempted to restrict the term 'Asia' to the Roman
Province of that name, in the unprejudiced view, the entire
Region of Asia extending through Palestine, Arabia, Persia and
India must be included. 
     The root meanings of the names of the 7 Churches are
indicative of their salient characteristics:

APOCALYPSE;  ROOT MEANING;  SYMBOLISM;  FAITH 

Ephesus;  Family Hearth;  Peace;  Sabaean
Smyrna;  Myrrh;  Benevolence;  Jewish
Pergamos;  Parchment;  Law, Harmony {14};  Hindu
Thyatira;  Cyprus Tree; Light {15};  Zoroastrian
Sardis;  Stone;  Truth;  Buddhist
Philadelphia;  Brotherly Love; Brotherly Love;  Christian
Laodicea;  Just People;  Justice {14};  Muslim  
 
     We shall not digress to justify the salient characteristics
attributed to the 7 Churches. There are numerous excellent works
on the subject of comparative religion. {16}
                                   
JOHN SEES THE ALPHA AND OMEGA:

And I turned to see the voice that spake to me. And being turned.
I saw seven golden candlesticks; And in the midst of the seven
candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment
down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. 
His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow;
and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine
brass, as they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of
many waters. -Rev 1:12-15

     The Figure is that of Bahá'u'lláh. He stands among the 7
candlesticks representing the 7 Churches of Asia. His garment to
the foot signifies his heavenly attributes, and in those
attributes, he resembles the Son of Man: "The voice of the Son of
Man is calling aloud from the sacred vale: 'Here am I, here am I,
O God my God!" -BH {17}  His golden girdle symbolizes a new Faith
and his spiritual power. His white hair like purest wool
identifies him as the Head of Days, that is, the Ancient of Days.
And because of his great tribulations, the hair of Bahá'u'lláh
had literally become snow white. "The Pen of Holiness ... hath
writ upon my snow-white brow .. " -BH {18} His eyes have been
described by witnesses as 'flames of fire.'
     His feet of brass are contrasted to those of
Nebuchadnezzar's vision in Daniel {19}. Nebuchadnezzar dreamt of
an image that had feet of part iron, part clay- a weakened metal
that soon broke beneath the forces of history. In John's vision,
the feet are of fine brass and are sufficient to endure
'forever.' The sound of many waters describes Bahá'u'lláh as the
Well Spring of Revelation.
     In his TABLET OF ALL FOOD, Bahá'u'lláh reveals that the
spiritual worlds are of different degrees. In one of these
several worlds, the world of the All-Highest Dominion, the
dwellers therein, God's Chosen Ones, are closely identified with
God, manifesting His attributes, speaking His voice, and are
identified with Him. "The essence of belief in Divine unity
consisteth in regarding Him Who is the Manifestation of God and
Him Who is the invisible, the inaccessible, the unknowable
Essence as one and the same." -BH {20} In another spiritual
world, the plane of Divinity, the Heavenly Court, the
Manifestations are as utter nothingness compared to God. 
     The different spiritual worlds accounts for the seeming
paradox between the vision described in verse 13 and a similar
vision in Daniel. {21}. In Daniel's vision, the Ancient of Days
with "head like pure wool" sits on the heavenly throne in the
plane of Divinity, the Heavenly Court, while "one like the Son of
man" (KJV) is brought before Him to receive 'glory,' 'an
everlasting dominion,' etc. In the version of Rev 1:13, the 'one
like the Son of man' also has hair like wool, etc. The paradox is
resolved by the concept of different spiritual worlds: In
Daniel's vision, it is God Who sits on the throne while 'Husayn-
'Ali (later to be given the title Bahá'u'lláh) is brought before
Him. John's vision is of the All-Highest Dominion, it is in this
lower spiritual world where Bahá'u'lláh exhibits the same
attributes as the Lord God.

HIS APPEARANCE:

And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth
went a sharp two-edged sword: and his countenance was as the sun
shineth in his strength. And when I saw him, I fell at his feet
as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying to me, Fear
not; I am the first and the last; I am he that liveth, and was
dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the
keys of hell and death. -Rev 1:16-18

     The 7 stars are the 7 'Governors' or Revelators of the 7
Churches, and also represent the name, 'Husayn-'Ali (the proper
name of Bahá'u'lláh). Since the 7 stars spell a single word, they
are actually the Manifestation of a single 'star,' the star of
'Husayn-'Ali.
     The 7 stars is an allusion to the 7 planets, which,
according to the theories of the ancient astrologers, were the
true Governors of the world of man, the Executors of the Divine
Will.
     The right hand is the hand of power and might. As the Spirit
of Truth, he speaks with the Sword of Truth, double-edged because
it separates the true from the false and the good from the
wicked. "Aid ye your Lord with the sword of wisdom and
utterance." -BH {22} 
     The sun symbolizes Divinity, the Manifestations of God, and
His Faith. "From Him all the Suns [Manifestations] have been
generated, and to Him they will all return. " -BH {23} 
His sun-like countenance describes Bahá'u'lláh as the Sun of
Truth. Many witnesses have testified that it was extremely
difficult to gaze upon his dazzling countenance.
     The Holy Spirit as evidenced through Jesus Christ and
Muhammad seemed to have died before the Advents of the Bab and
Bahá'u'lláh. But God lives forever and has the power to resurrect
man from the death of unbelief and to return him from the hell of
remoteness. "Paradise is on your right hand, and hath been
brought nigh unto you, while Hell has been made to blaze."
"Followers of the Gospel, behold the gates of heaven are flung
open."  "No man can obtain everlasting life, unless he embraceth
the truth of this inestimable, this wondrous, and sublime
Revelation." -BH {24} 

A WORD PICTURE:

Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are,
and the things which shall be hereafter; The mystery of the seven
stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden
candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven
churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the
seven churches. -Rev 1:19-20

     The 7 stars are revealed to be the 'Governors' or Revelators
of the 7 Divinely revealed Faiths. Among other things, John is
commanded to "write down" the things that "are now" (REB).
Chapter 1 of the Apocalypse is a word picture. 'Writing down'
these things reveals the Greatest Name Emblem of the Bahá'í
Faith. The upper level represents the Plane of Divinity, the
Heavenly Court. The second level represents the All-Highest
Dominion, the plane of the Manifestations, the third and lowest
level represents the plane of the Churches. They are connected by
the Name of Bahá'u'lláh who stands among the 7 Churches and holds
the 7 Governors of the 7 Faiths in his right hand of might and
power. In the Greatest Name Emblem, the stars or Governors are
represented by only two, the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh, whose missions
are to unify the Seven Churches through the single Spirit of
Bahá'u'lláh.
                                                                         
                  
                  CHAPTER 2- LETTERS TO ANCIENT FAITHS


SYNOPSIS:

     In this chapter, letters are addressed to the Sabaean,
Jewish, Hindu and Zoroastrian Churches. (Letters to the Buddhist,
Christian and Muslim Churches will be presented in the next
chapter.)
     The letters are addressed to the Manifestations and the
devotees of the Churches as they will exist at the end of the
Piscean Age. Each of the Churches has strayed from its pristine
purity and vitality. The speaker in each of these first four
letters is God, speaking through Bahá'u'lláh.
     The Sabaean Church is extolled for its good works, patience,
rejection of Covenant-breakers, etc., but is chastened because it
has strayed from its original teachings. Therefore, Bahá'u'lláh
threatens to come quickly and extinguish the Sabaean Church,
unless it repents and reverses its course.
     Moses and the Jewish Church are extolled for the "true Jews"
within its fold, for those who do good works and are spiritually
rich, and who have withstood tribulation and poverty over the
centuries. But he condemns the "synagogue of Satan," and warns 
the Jews that many of them will be imprisoned and tried for 10-
lunar years by the "devil" [Hitler]. Those who persevere, remain
faithful to God, and overcome the false teachings within the
Church, will be rewarded with a "crown of life," nor will they be
hurt by the "second death" [the rejection of Bahá'u'lláh, the
Messiah of the Last Day]. 
     Krishna and the Hindu Church are extolled for their good
works, even in the place "where Satan [Shiva] dwells."
Bahá'u'lláh also extols the Hindus for holding fast to the name
of Brahma during the turbulent days of Lord Buddha; but he
chastens them for holding the doctrine of Baal [Shiva] with his
fertility rites, and to a large pantheon of gods and demons.
Bahá'u'lláh warns them to overcome these and other false
teachings, or else he will come quickly, and combat them with the
Sword of Truth. To those who do overcome, he will give them the
"hidden manna" of the Word of God, and a new name, 'Bahá'í,' a
name whose import will be known only to the devotee.
     Zoroaster and his Church are extolled for their good works
of charity, faith, etc., and are complimented for doing even
better than they did at their beginning. Nevertheless, they are
chastened for their idolatry and other decadent practices, and
for their witness to Satan [Ahriman]. Those who have not "known
the depths of Satan," who overcome false teachings, etc., will
receive no further tests, but will be  rewarded with the "morning
star," the Bab, who will appear in their midst, and who is
destined, with his devotees, to rule the nations with a "rod of
iron."


    The following letters in Chapters 2 and 3 are addressed to
the 7 Churches of Asia as they are characterized at the end of
the Age of Pisces. In contrast to their pristine purity, each of
the Churches has become corrupted. The Speaker is the Spirit of
God speaking through the Manifestation. Their style suggests an
equivalence between the Manifestation and His Church, and the
Savior seems to be identical to the saved. "Nay, all else besides
these Manifestations, live by the operation of their Will, and
move and have their being through the outpourings of their
grace."  "That some are near (to God) and others are far (from
God) is to be ascribed to the Manifestations themselves." -BH {1} 
     The first five letters are addressed to the Founders of the
Sabaean, Jewish, Hindu, Zoroastrian and Buddhist Faiths. All of
these Faiths were revealed during the Age of Aries and their
Dispensations had been ended by the beginning of the Piscean Age. 
    But there is a special role that is played by Bahá'u'lláh. In
THE YOUTH OF PARADISE, Bahá'u'lláh identifies Himself as the Word
upon which depended the souls of all the Prophets of God and His
Chosen Ones. Thus, only Bahá'u'lláh has the power to speak to and
for the Revelators of the first five Faiths. 
     There is sometimes an apparent ambiguity as to which
Manifestation is doing the speaking; the intermingling of Voices
points out their essential unity. "Inasmuch as these Birds of the
celestial Throne are sent down from the heaven of the Will of
God, and as they all arise to proclaim His irresistible Faith,
they therefore are regarded as one soul and the same person ...
They all abide in the same tabernacle, soar in the same heaven,
are seated upon the same throne, utter the same speech, and
proclaim the same Faith ..." -BH {2} 

A LETTER TO EPHESUS:

Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write;  These things
saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who
walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks:  I know
thy works and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst
not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say
they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:  And
hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name's sake hast
laboured and hast not fainted. -Rev 2:1-3

     The letter is addressed to the now forgotten Revelator of
the Church of Peace, the Sabaean Faith. Apostles are trusted
messengers. To faint means to grow weary.


Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left
thy first love.  Remember therefore from whence thou hast fallen,
and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee
quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except
thou repent.  But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of
the Nicolaitanes, which I also hate.  He that hath an ear, let
him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that
overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in
the midst of the paradise of God. -Rev 2:4-7

     God, speaking through Bahá'u'lláh, is threatening to remove
their Faith from the earth because they have strayed from their
original teachings. Indeed, the Divinely revealed Sabaean Faith,
not to be confused with the Mandaeans of southern Iraq, is now
extinct. Originally, Abraham may have been a follower of the
ancient Sabaean Faith whose Revelator has been lost to history.
The remnants of this ancient Faith are the idolaters of Africa.   
     Nicolas was probably a convert from Antioch.{3} His
followers, Nicolaitanes, were Covenant-breakers of the early
Christian Church, and here signify the Covenant-breakers of any
Divinely revealed Faith. Nicholas maintained that the acceptance
of Jesus Christ placed the believer above the laws and morality
of non-Christians, and that one's standard of behavior became
largely a matter of personal inclination.  
     God promises the sincere Sabaeans that they will receive
spiritual life, light, and sustenance through God's
Manifestation, the Tree of Life, Bahá'u'lláh.{4} 

A LETTER TO SMYRNA:

And unto the angel of the church in Smyrna write; These things
saith the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive;  I
know thy works and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich)
and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are
not, but are of the synagogue of Satan.  Fear none of these
things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some
of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have
tribulation ten days; be thou faithful unto death, and I will
give thee a crown of life.  He that hath an ear, let him hear
what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall
not be hurt by the second death. -Rev 2:8-11 

     The message is addressed to Moses, the Revelator of the
Jewish Faith. The Jewish Faith was probably the first to
recognize the benevolence of God. He distinguishes between those
Jews who are materially poor but spiritually rich, and those who
are materially rich but spiritually poor. A true Jew loves God
and obeys His laws. Those who exalt themselves before Him and
refuse to obey His laws are of the synagogue of Satan. 
     The Jews are informed that some of them will be imprisoned
by the "devil" for a period of 10 days. We recall that in
biblical prophecy, a 'prophetic day' usually represents a year of
calendar time. The prophecy warns them of their 10-year
tribulation under Hitler and the Nazi regime. The holocaust began
with the 'Nurnberg laws on citizenship and race,' 15 September
1935, and ended with the destruction of the Third Reich in May
1945, a period of 10-lunar years.  
     The Spirit of Bahá'u'lláh, promises that the 'true Jews' who
persevere through their tribulation and overcome the false
teachings within their church will be rewarded with spiritual
salvation and eternal life. They can avoid the "second death" by
their acceptance of Bahá'u'lláh. Their 'first spiritual death'
resulted from their rejection of Jesus the Messiah.  

A LETTER TO PERGAMOS:

And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write: These things
saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges;  13 I know
thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan's seat is:
and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even
in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was
slain among you, where Satan dwelleth. -Rev 2:12-13 

     These words are addressed to Krishna and the Hindu Faith.
The most conspicuous characteristic of the Hindu Faith is its
emphasis on the universal spiritual Law of Karma. In Greek,
"Antipas" means literally 'against all,' and refers to the great
reformer of the ancient Hindu world, Lord Buddha. "Where Satan
dwells" generally refers to a degraded spiritual condition, but
more specifically to the worship of Shiva. 
     The modern Hindu Faith, although theoretically monotheistic
(or more correctly, 'trinitarian'), has a de facto pantheon that
includes the deity Shiva the 'Destroyer.' The Hindu
representations of Shiva- his fierce demeanor, trident, serpents,
human skulls, fire, phallic symbol, etc.- remind us of the
Western representations of Satan 'the Enemy.' 
     Tradition says that Lord Buddha was accidentally killed by a
meal of poisoned mushrooms in the home of Cunda, a smith.
However, poison was one method that had been used by a jealous
cousin Devadatta and his henchman in previous attempts on Lord
Buddha's life. Verse 13 indicates that Lord Buddha was actually
martyred, thereby revealing the true nature of His death. 
     The sincere Hindus are cited for maintaining the name of God
(Brahma) even during their period of spiritual decay.  

14 But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there
them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a
stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things
sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.  So hast thou
also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing
I hate. -Rev 2:14-15 

     The infamous Jezebel, wife of Ahab, king of Israel,
introduced the idolatrous doctrine of "Balaam" (plural of Baal)
into Israel in the 9th century BCE. {5} While little is known for
certain about the Baal cult, it appears that he represented the
male fertility principle in nature and that his rites may have
had sexual undertones. It is probable that Shiva is Baal under a
different name. The wording of verse 14 suggests that the worship
of Shiva may not be acceptable to the Heavenly Court.
      In contrast to Shiva, the Hindu pantheon also includes the
benevolent deity Vishnu 'the Preserver.' According to Hindu
theology, Lord Krishna was the last of several Avatars
(Manifestations) of Vishnu prior to Lord Buddha.
      Verse 15 again censures those who use 'salvation' as an
excuse for unprincipled behavior.
      Besides the literal meanings, allegorical and symbolic
meanings can be attached to certain phrases and words. For
example, 'idol worship' is equivalent to the modern day doctrine
of materialism. "To eat things sacrificed to idols" means to
believe in (to 'swallow') idolatrous teachings, just as the
consuming of the bread and the wine of the Eucharist symbolizes
the acceptance of Jesus Christ's teachings and His blood
sacrifice. "To commit fornication" means to accept false doctrine
or to participate in obscene rituals.

Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight
against them with the sword of my mouth.  He that hath an ear,
let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that
overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give
him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no
man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. -Rev 2:16-17

       Hidden manna refers to Divine Revelation- spiritual
sustenance from heaven, the Word of God and Reality, hidden until
revealed by Bahá'u'lláh. " ... That which is preeminent above all
other gifts, is incorruptible in nature, and pertaineth to God
Himself, is the gift of Divine Revelation ... It is, in its
essence, and will ever so remain, the Bread which cometh down
from Heaven." -BH {6} This "Heavenly Bread" is promised to those
who overcome the false teachings within the Hindu Faith. 
      In antiquity, it was a custom to present invited guests
with 'tesserae'- small pieces of stone, bone, ivory or mosaic.
These tesserae were also used to perpetuate a friendship or to
make a union more sacred. The privilege of friendship could be
extended to others carrying the tessera by a simple process: the
tessera was broken into two parts and each party wrote his own
name or secret inscription on his own piece. Mutual pledges were
made, the pieces were exchanged, and no one knew the name
inscribed on his piece except the possessor. Such secret tesserae
were probably carried by early Christians during their travels to
introduce them to fellow Christians.
      The Bab presented His followers and Bahá'u'lláh with a
scroll often called the 'White Stone.'  The Bab had inscribed it
with a pentacle composed of 360 derivatives of the word 'Bahá'.'
The scroll revealed the name of the new Manifestation to follow
the Bab. Only those who accept the Bahá'í Revelation understand
the meaning of the "new name."
      "New name" (Greek 'kainon onoma') has a literal value by
gematria of 432 and an archetypal value of 9 ( that is, 4 + 3 + 2 
= 9). 'Bahá'' has the literal value of 9 by the Arabic gematria,
and Bahá'u'lláh used the number 9 as a seal to many of his
Tablets.

A LETTER TO THYATIRA:

And unto the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things
saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of
fire, and his feet are like fine brass;  19 I know thy works, and
charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works;
and the last to be more than the first. -Rev 2:18-19

[REB 19 "I know what you are doing, your love and faithfulness,
your service and your endurance; indeed of late you have done
even better than you did at first."]

      This letter is addressed to Zoroaster and His Church of
"Thyatira." Zoroastrianism, once with a vast number of devotees
throughout the entire Middle East, is now the smallest of the
world's living religions. Today, its most conspicuous
characteristic is its cult of the Eternal Flame: fires laced with
'thyine' fuels, and kept burning in places of worship.{7}
      The title 'Son of God' has undergone an evolution in
meaning since ancient times. In the pre-Christian Gentile world
it meant 'Redeemer.' Pharaohs and other potentates of the ancient
world bore the title, and it was even a part of the Roman
Imperial cult, beginning with Augustus (63 BCE - 14 CE), who
received the title 'Divi Filius' (Latin = 'Son of God') by decree
of the Senate. Nevertheless, devout Jews considered it an act of
blasphemy for mere humans to adopt it; moreover, conjoining the
titles Messiah and Son of God implied that the Messiah was not
inferior in dignity to Caesar. 
     To Jesus, 'Son of God' and 'god' were epithets for "one unto
whom the Word of God came." Jesus makes this clear when he
answers certain Jews who accused him of blasphemy:

Jesus answered 'Is it not written in your law, "I said: You are
gods"? It is those to whom God's word came who are called gods-
and Scripture cannot be set aside. Then why do you charge me with
blasphemy for saying, "I am God's son," I whom the Father
consecrated and sent into the world? -REB: John 10:34-35

     The "law" that Jesus quotes is  

[God says:]  'This is my sentence: Though you are gods, all sons
of the Most High, yet you shall die as mortals die, and fall as
any prince does.' -REB: Psalm 82:6-8 

     In other words, a 'Son of God' is One to whom the word of
God came and who is consecrated by the Father.{8}  This is
precisely what is meant by a 'Divine Revelator' or a
'Manifestation of God.' 
     In spite of their small numbers, the sincere Zoroastrians
are renowned for their beneficence, prosperity, education, and
charitable works designed to alleviate misery without distinction
of race or religion. In verse 19, Bahá'u'lláh extols them for
their good attributes at the end of the Piscean Age.

Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou
sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess,
to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to
eat things sacrificed to idols.  And I gave her space to repent
her fornication; and she repented not.  Behold I will cast her
into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great
tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.  And I will kill
her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I
am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto
every one of you according to your works. -Rev 2:20-23     

     Originally, the Zoroastrian Faith was free of idols. Their
Supreme Deity was Ormazd (Ahura Mazda), the God of Goodness,
Wisdom and Spiritual Light. However, under the reign of the
Persian king Artaxerxes II (405-359 BCE), the god Mithra and
idols of Anahita, a fertility goddess, were introduced.  The
historical causes of this momentous deviation away from idol-free
monotheism are unknown. However, verse 20 suggests that there may
have been a 'prophetess' involved, a woman analogous to Jezebel,
who introduced idolatry and other unwholesome elements into their
religious practices; the subject deserves further study by
historians. Today, the Zoroastrian Faith has a large pantheon of
gods and demons.
     Bahá'u'lláh threatens to cast the Zoroastrian 'Jezebel'
into the bed of misery and shame, along with the idolatrous
followers who participate in her false doctrine. Her spiritually
dead descendants will disappear from the earth.

24 But unto you I say, and unto the rest of Thyatira, as many as
have not this doctrine, and have not known the depths of Satan,
as they speak; I will put none other burden.  But that which ye
have already hold fast till I come.  And he that overcometh, and
keepeth my works unto the end, to him I will give power over the
nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the
vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I
received of my Father.  And I will give him the morning star.  He
that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the
churches. -Rev 2:24-29

[REB 24 "And now I speak to the rest of you in Thyatira, all who
do not accept this teaching and have had no experience of what
they call the deep secrets of Satan. On you I impose no further
burden.]

     Beginning in the Sassanid period of Persia (226-631 CE), an
insidious doctrine crept into the Zoroastrian Faith- 'dualism,'
by which Ahriman 'the Destroyer' (Satan) was elevated to a rank
equal in power to that of Ormazd 'the Preserver' (God). Modern
Zoroastrians tend to minimize this aspect of their religion, but
ever since the Middle Ages the co-equal power of Satan has been
used by them to rationalize the evil tendencies in Man. One
suspects that the 'depths of Satan' have been experienced by more
than a few 'devotees' of every religion.
      The Bab, the Forerunner of Bahá'u'lláh, was manifested in
that part of Persia where the Zoroastrian Faith is centered. The
'Morning Star' is the Herald of a new Day of God, and represents
the Bab. His Advent resulted in great upheavals in Persia and
neighboring countries. The verses prophesy the final dissolution
of all the nations of the world and their spiritual domination by
the faithful who accept the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh.
      The 'rod of iron' is a symbol of spiritual dominion, it is
not a sword of conquest. " ... though the revelations of My grace
and bounty have permeated every atom of the universe, yet the rod
with which I can chastise the wicked is grievous ..."  -BH {9} 
".... certain souls guided [people] with a rod of the plant, that
is, a reed wherewith he shepherded the sheep, like unto the rod
of Moses; others trained [the people] with a rod of iron and
drove them, as in the time of Muhammad ..." -AB {10} 

                   CHAPTER 3- LETTERS TO RECENT FAITHS


Synopsis:

     These three letters are addressed to the Buddhist, Christian
and Muslim Faiths.
     The first Church, being the last of the waning Age of Aries,
is delivered by God through His Manifestation, Bahá'u'lláh. The
last two Churches, being those of the waxing Age of Pisces, are 
delivered by God speaking through His Manifestations Jesus the
Messiah and Muhammad the Seal.
     Lord Buddha and his Church are admonished for being a 'dead'
religion, even though they profess to be 'alive.' Their works are
not perfect before God, and if they do not watch, the Buddha
Maitreye will enter and depart the world stage unseen, like a
thief. But there are a few Buddhists who have remained true to
their original teachings, and, if they are able to overcome the
false teachings within their Faith, they will be allowed to walk
with Bahá'u'lláh in Nirvana.
     Jesus lauds his true devotees for keeping his Word and for
not denying his Name, even though they have little strength left
at the end of the Piscean Age. Also, he will cause those
insincere Jews, the "synagogue of Satan," to worship at their
feet. Because the sincere Christians have been loyal, they will
not be tested by the ordeal of receiving the Divine Reaper,
Bahá'u'lláh, within their midst. The Return of Christ will occur
quickly after the Piscean Age, and those Christians who are able
to overcome the false teachings within the Church will be
rewarded by a new name, 'Bahá'í.'
     Muhammad severely admonishes his devotees for being
"lukewarm" in their propagation of the Muslim Faith during the
Piscean Age; but he promises those true Muslims who are able to
overcome the false teachings within the Church, that they will be
allowed to sit with him on his heavenly throne, just as he sits
with 'Allah.


A LETTER TO SARDIS:
     
And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things
saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars;
I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art
dead.  Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that
are ready to die; for I have not found thy works perfect before
God.  Remember therefore how thou has received and heard, and
hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will
come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will
come upon thee. -Rev 3:1-3  

       This letter is addressed to the Church of Stone (Sardis),
a symbol of Truth. The most conspicuous characteristics of modern
Buddhism are its astonishing megalithic statues of the Buddha,
and the worship of His effigies and sacred relics. In various
forms, the Buddhist Faith has spread throughout the entire world. 
      Lord Buddha was the Revelator of the 'Fourfold Noble
Truth,' and His mission was to reform the polytheistic and often
destructive tendencies within the Hindu Faith that had been
accreted over the centuries. His work was not completed, and
Buddhism had, itself, become assimilated into Indian Hinduism by
the 6th century CE.
      The verses reveal that the original work of the Church is
no longer vigorous, and that the Faith, though outwardly alive,
is inwardly dead. Furthermore, even though they profess to watch
for the Advent of the Great Buddha Maitreye, He may enter and
depart the world 'unseen,' like a thief, and at an Hour that they
least expect.        

Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their
garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are
worthy.  He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white
raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of
life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before
his angels.  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit
saith unto the churches. -Rev 3:4-6  

       Raiment, garment, clothing, etc. mean the character or
attributes of the soul. "Say; From My laws the sweet smelling
savor of My garment can be smelled, and by their aid the
standards of victory will be planted upon the highest peaks." 
"Clothe thyself with the essence of righteousness, and let thine
heart be afraid of none except God." -BH {1} Verse 4 alludes to
those hypocrites among the Buddhists who defile their red and
saffron robes by violating their true purposes.
       The Book of Life is the list of those deserving Nirvana
and eternal life. "O thou who art the fruit of My Tree and the
leaf thereof! ... Wert thou to scan the pages of the Book of Life
thou wouldst, most certainly, discover that which would dissipate
thy sorrows and dissolve thine anguish." -BH {2}
       The first five letters were addressed to the Revelators
and their Churches Who appeared in the past astrological Age of
Aries. A review of those letters will show that they are
all 'read' by Bahá'u'lláh, who was described by a word picture in
Chapter 1.
      The last two letters, addressed to the Churches of
Brotherly Love and Justice, are to be read by their own
Revelators of the new Age of Pisces, that is, by Jesus and
Muhammad. The Apocalypse reveals the events of the new Age during
which they will have autonomy and supreme spiritual authority.
Only the Ancient of Days, the Manifestation 'with the seven stars
in His right hand,' has power over past Revelators whose
authority had been terminated at the end of the Age of Aries, and
may read their letters.  

A LETTER TO PHILADELPHIA:

7 And to the church of Philadelphia write; These things saith he
that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he
that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man
openeth;  8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before the an
open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast little strength,
and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name. -Rev 3:7-8   

[REB: 7 'To the angel of the church at Philadelphia write: .....
8 .... I know your strength is small, yet you have observed my
command and have not disowned my name. ....]

       The letter is addressed to the Revelator of the Church of
Brotherly Love, that is, "Philadelphia." It is read by Jesus. A
new descriptor is introduced: the "Key of David." Since the
letter is being read by Jesus Christ, He extols the true
Christians for keeping "my" word and not denying "my" name.
       The Key of David is the power to close the old Age and to
open the new Age. In astrological symbolism, each Age is
indicated by a 'door' in the zodiac. When a new constellation
appears at the 'door of Spring,' a new Age commences and is
reflected in the world of man by 'corresponding' events through
the formula 'as above, so below.' Jesus explains that He has
opened a new Age of history, and no man has the power to turn
back the movement of time. More will be said about the "door" in
later verses.
       Jesus also reveals that He is aware of the weakness of the
Christian Church at the end of the Age of Pisces. In spite of the
great number who call themselves 'Christians,' the number of
devotees who actually practice the true teachings of Jesus are
relatively few. Doctrinal and theological disputes, beginning
with the rift between Peter and Paul, have weakened their
position and have produced a proliferation of sects numbering in
the thousands, each sect claiming to represent the 'true'
teachings of Christ. Brotherly love, the foundation stone of the
Christian Church, is rarely evidenced between the members of
opposing sects, and their power to influence the course of human
history is almost negligible.  

Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say
they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them
to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have
loved thee. 10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I
also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come
upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. -Rev
3:9-10   

[REB: 10 Because you have kept my command to stand firm, I will
also keep you from the ordeal that is to fall upon the whole
world to test its inhabitants.] 

      During His ministry on earth, Jesus was a radical reformer
attempting to cleanse Judaism and the Temple of 'satanic
practices.' The 'temple gang' eventually succeeded in having
their own Messiah nailed to the cross. It was only after the
total destruction of the Temple in 70 CE, that the 'true Judaism'
promoted by Jesus became the accepted norm by the Jews in exile.
Although much of the early Christian zeal has become sublimated
into less revolutionary channels, there are still some sincere
Christians, and Jews, who remain engaged in 'cleansing the
Temple.'
      The Christians are promised that they will be spared from
the ordeal that will come to test all the inhabitants of the
world. And yet all the inhabitants of the world (including
Christians) are to be 'tested' by this ordeal.
      What is to be the nature of this test? The test is to be
the same as it has always been, and the same as it was in the
early days of the Christian Church, that is, the test of
overcoming the false teachings within the Church and of 
recognizing the new Manifestation of God when He appears. But in
contrast to the early Christian Church, the new test is to be
worldwide, not limited by geographical and communicational
constraints.
      Indeed, the Christian world was spared from participating
in the ordeal that is to test all humanity. Contrary to the
expectations of most Christians, the new Manifestation did not
appear in a Christian country, but in a Muslim country!  Even the
Christian regiment that was commanded to execute the Bab was
protected from doing so through Divine intervention, a miraculous
event that was observed by thousands and has been attested to by
many reliable witnesses.

Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no
man may take thy crown. 12 Him that overcometh will I make a
pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and
I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the
city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of
heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.  He
that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the
churches. -Rev 3:11-13   

[REB: 12 Those who are victorious I shall make pillars in the
temple of my God; they will remain there for ever.]       

     A crown is a symbol of reward and authority. It will be
given to those Christians who overcome the false teachings within
the Church, and they will become 'pillars' (spiritual supports)
for the rest of those in the Church.
       "New" is repeated for emphasis. The new Jerusalem will not
be called Christianity, and the new Manifestation will not be
named Jesus Christ.
      Indeed, the new name of God will be Bahá'; the new
Jerusalem will be called the City of Bahá', and the new
Manifestation will be named Bahá'u'lláh. "O Concourse of the Son
(Christians)! Are ye hidden from myself because of my name?" 
"Once in about a thousand years shall this city be renewed and
readorned ... That City is none other than the Word of God
revealed in every age and dispensation." -BH {3}
      The word 'Jerusalem' means 'Sacred Peace.' In the Greek
gematria, 'Jerusalem' has a literal value of 864 and an
archetypal value of Nine. {4} 'New name' has a literal value of
432, which also has an archetypal value of Nine.  

A LETTER TO LAODICEA:

And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These
things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the
beginning of the creation of God;  I know thy works, that thou
art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.  So then
because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue
thee out of my mouth. -Rev 3:14-16  

      This letter is written for the Revelator and His Church of
'Just People' (Laodicea), and is read by Muhammad, the Comforter. 
"The Amen" is an appropriate title for Muhammad, since He is the
'Seal' of the Prophets. Also he affirmed and echoed the Reality
of Jesus Christ, even claiming to BE Jesus in spirit. In the
Qur'an, God addresses Muhammad, the Messenger of God, saying "We
made you a Witness, a Herald of good news [gospel], and a
Warner." As a Manifestation, He is the beginning of a new Day of
God, a Source of creation in the world of man.
      Muhammad admonishes His devotees for being "lukewarm" in
their promotion of the Cause of God. In spite of their
less-than-zealous promotion of Islam, early Muslims were
noteworthy for their positive acts of tolerance and justice.  

Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and
have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and
miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:  I counsel thee to buy
of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white
raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy
nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve,
that thou mayest see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten:
be zealous therefore, and repent. -Rev 3:17-19  

[REB: 19 All whom I love I reprove and discipline. Be
wholehearted therefore in your repentance.]

     During the years of rapid expansion of Islam under the
infamous Houses of Umayyah and 'Abbas, the primary objective of
the caliphate was the collection of taxes on non-Muslims and the
acquisition of wealth by the corrupt Caliphs and their cohorts.
As a consequence, the true purpose of Islam was 'beclouded' and
has remained obscured to this day.
    Gold is purified by fire; man is purified by spiritual
suffering and repentance.  

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice,
and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him,
and he with me.  To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with
me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my
Father in his throne.  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the
Spirit saith unto the churches. -Rev 3:20-22  

       Muhammad stands and knocks at the "door" (the new Age)
that was unlocked by Jesus with the "Key of David." He speaks in
the same spirit as Jesus, and promises to share spiritual
sustenance with anyone who recognizes that spirit. He also
alludes to His mystical flight from the Rock Moriah to the
'Seventh Heaven' where He sat with 'Allah on His throne.{5}
                     
                     CHAPTER 4- THE INVISIBLE ZODIAC


SYNOPSIS:

     John is permitted to see the far side of the celestial
sphere, the new heaven as it will appear the during the Age of
Leo-Aquarius. Bahá'u'lláh, representing God the Father, is seen
in glory upon a central throne on the crystalline surface. 
     Instead of the usual 12 thrones surrounding the central
throne, there are twice the usual number. [This is because of the
Twin Manifestation, the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh, that will appear at
the dawn of the Leo-Aquarian Age.] Also, John sees that the 7
planetary 'gods' are actually the 7 Spirits that were introduced
in Chapter 1. [The 7 stars are the Governors of the Revelators of
7 Churches, in whatever Age they are manifested, and in
particular, the 7 Churches of Chapter 1.]
     The new pillars of the Leo-Aquarian Age [corresponding to
the sun's house at the two solstices and two equinoxes] are Leo,
Taurus, Aquarius, and Flying Eagle. [The last pillar has replaced
Scorpio for reasons that will be explained later.]
     The four new pillars will exert their influences during the
Age of Leo-Aquarius in various ways, one example being the 4
Central Figures of the Bahá'í Faith.


     The letters were written for the Revelators Who appeared in
Asia during the Ages of Aries and Pisces.{1} Their Advents
probably appeared in the same temporal sequence as listed in the
Apocalypse. Now John will have a preview of the Age of Leo-
Aquarius.

JOHN SEES THE KING OF THE LEO-AQUARIAN AGE:

1 After this I looked, and behold, a door was opened in heaven:
and the first voice I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking
to me; which said, come up hither, and I will shew thee things
which must be hereafter.  And immediately I was in the spirit:
and behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the
throne.  And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a
sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in
sight like unto an emerald. -Rev 4:1-3   

[REB: 1 ... and the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a
trumpet said, ...]      

     John is invited to see the far side of the celestial sphere,
the 'Upper World' or 'Celestial Pavilion', and to have a preview
of great secrets that will be disclosed after the Age of Pisces.
In accordance with first century cosmology, the outermost
'heaven' is represented as a vast crystalline sphere. The
Celestial Pavilion appears to John to be a 'sea of glass' as he
stands on its outer surface.   
     The voice like a trumpet is that of the heralding angel,
verse 1:10. John is invited to enter the "door" into the Age
"hereafter," that is, the Age following Pisces. In astrological
terms, the name of this future Age is Leo-Aquarius.      
     In this far distant Age, John sees Bahá'u'lláh in His role
as the King of Glory. His appearance on the throne signifies His
mission as the World Redeemer, the Unifier of Mankind: the jasper
appears in many colors, but especially the color of the human
heart; the sardine appears to be red or brown, depending upon how
it is viewed, and signifies the hidden unity behind the material
and spiritual realms.      
     The emerald shimmers with a color that blends with every
other color; the rainbow bright as an emerald is God's eternal
Covenant, renewed in every Age, and it shimmers with the 'colors'
of the seven Faiths.  

THE TWENTY-FOUR ELDERS:

And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon
the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white
raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold. -Rev 4:4   
    
     The imagery of much of the Apocalypse reflects the ancient
cosmological theory that the Supreme Being exerts His influence
over the world of Man through the zodiac and astrological
influences. The theory derives from ancient Chaldaea
(neo-Babylonia) and Jewish theologians may have been influenced
by the theory during the Babylonian Captivity. Astrology was
considered 'science' until remarkably recent centuries.
'Abdu'l-Bahá' {2} warns us that the theories of the astrologers
are not to be accepted literally but do have profound symbolic
value. 
     John sees the twenty-four Elders seated around the throne of
Bahá'u'lláh in correspondence with the signs of the zodiac.
Before the Bahá'í Dispensation, there were only 12 Elders (holy
Figures) seated about the heavenly throne. For example, Jacob had
12 sons, there were 12 chiefs of tribes under Moses, Jesus had 12
Apostles, there were 12 Imams of Islam, and Buddha the Healer had
12 divine guardians {3}. But in the Dispensation to be unveiled
in the Age of Leo-Aquarius, there are to be twice-twelve of these
holy Figures!        
     Why is this? It is because the Bahá'í Dispensation is
actually 'doubled' by the Twin Manifestation: the Bab and
Bahá'u'lláh. Thus in the Bahá'í Dispensation there are to be TWO
holy Figures for every sign of the zodiac, instead of the usual
one! {4} The twice-twelve Elders are to be the 'channels' through
which the heavenly Manna is to be dispersed throughout the world
of Man.       

THE SEVEN SPIRITS OF GOD:

And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and
voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the
throne, which are the seven Spirits of God. -Rev 4:5        

     Lightning is the anger and wrath of God. Thunder is the
sound of the violation of the Covenant. Voices are the utterings
of the doubters and hypocrites who fall into trials and
temptations. {5} 
     As explained in Chapter 1, the 7 lamps of fire and the 7
Spirits have two meanings. In one sense they represent the two
7-lettered names (in Arabic) of Bahá'u'lláh, Husayn-'Ali; in a
second sense they represent the 7 Revelators of the 7 Faiths of
Asia.      
     The 7 lamps of fire before the throne, to the outward eye,
represent the 7 planets, which popular myth considered to be 7
lamps carried by angels across the dome of heaven. However, John
learns that the 7 planets are not the true Governors of the world
of man, but that the world is actually controlled by the seven
Spirits of God. The seven Spirits correspond to the Divine
Revelators Who manifest the Spirit of Bahá'.  

THE FOUR PILLARS OF THE LEO-AQUARIAN AGE:

And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto a
crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the
throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind.  And the
first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf,
and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was
like a flying eagle. -Rev 4:6-7        

     To the outward eye, the far side of the crystalline
celestial sphere appears as a sea of glass. But to the inward
eye, the sea of glass like unto a crystal is clear and pure-
symbolic of the Ocean of Truth. "O people! I swear by the one
true God! This is the Ocean out of which all seas have proceeded,
and unto which every one of them will ultimately be united." -BH
{6} Bahá'u'lláh reflects perfectly the attributes of God from the
mirror-like surface, and no one can distinguish between the Light
of God and His Manifestation reflected on the throne.
     The four beasts with "eyes" (stars) before and behind are
creatures of the zodiac. They correspond to the four corners or
pillars that will support the Age of Leo-Aquarius, the advent of
cosmic time that will announce the Dispensation of Bahá'u'lláh.
In astrological terminology, the four corners of an Age are the
signs corresponding to the equinoxes and solstices. They are
listed in their correct precession order:  


BEAST; SIGN; PRECESSION ORDER; PILLAR (DAWNING TIME)  

Lion; Leo; 9; Autumnal equinox

Ox (RSV); Taurus; 12; Summer solstice

Man; Aquarius; 3; Spring equinox

Flying Eagle; Scorpio; 6; Winter solstice       

     Leo, whose number is 9, is listed first to signify the
kingship of Bahá'u'lláh during the Age. Leo was also the point of
origin of the Great Star Fall of 11 November during the autumn of
1833 that seemed to announce the sixteenth birthday of
Bahá'u'lláh.      
     The more ancient name Flying Eagle is substituted for the
name Scorpio for reasons that may prove interesting. The subject
will be revisited later. Flying Eagle should not be confused with
Eagle, another constellation that is not a member of the zodiac.  
     Besides supporting the corners of the Age of Leo-Aquarius,
the four beasts have other meanings. In the world of Lahut (the
Plane of Divinity, the Heavenly Court){7}, it is God Who sits on
the throne and the four pillars are the Four Central Figures of
the Bahá'í Dispensation:  

     Leo = the Lion of Judah, Bahá'u'lláh 

     Ox = the Servant of Bahá', 'Abdu'l-Bahá' 

     Man = the Man Child, the Bab 

     Flying Eagle = the Guardian, Shoghi Effendi    

     In the world of Jabarut (the All Highest Dominion){7}, it is
Bahá'u'lláh who sits on the throne, and the four pillars are
earthly rulers, paragons of virtue, who will accept Bahá'u'lláh
and thereby secure the Cause.

And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and
they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night,
saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is,
and is to come. -Rev 4:8

     The six wings allude to the ancient Hebrew Messengers of God
who had thrice-two wings. Full of eyes within signify great
spiritual insight.
     The Lord God Almighty (the 'Pantocrator') is thrice-holy. He
is Manifested in every Age, past, present and future.

PRAISE TO THE KING:

And when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him
that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever,  The four
and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne,
and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their
crowns before the throne, saying,  Thou art worthy, O Lord, to
receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all
things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. -Rev
4:9-11        

     In many of His Tablets Bahá'u'lláh proclaims, "I am God."
This identity with God is in the realm of His attributes and not
of His essence. Bahá'u'lláh recites the words of God to His
Manifestation, "There is no distinction whatsoever between Thee
and Them; except that they are Thy servants and are created of
Thee."  And, "But for Thee, I would not have created the
heavens."  "... He Who is the Monarch of all names is come, He at
Whose bidding every single name hath, from the beginning that
hath no beginning, been created ..." -BH {8} 
     If one 'writes down' the word picture of this Chapter, a
beautiful mandala is created. It is a form of the 'quadratura
circuli' (squared circle) that has been used throughout the world
for many Ages to symbolize the unification of heaven and earth
and the realization of inner wholeness. Thus John sees that man's
feeble conception of the phenomenal cosmos is a mere symbol of
the 'hidden mandala,' the Divine Order that is hidden, yet
implicit, in the arrangement and laws governing the universe. 
                   
                   CHAPTER 5- THE BOOK OF SEVEN SEALS 


SYNOPSIS:

     John sees a scroll with 7 seals in the right hand of
Bahá'u'lláh, some of the words have obvious meanings while others
are hidden. The scroll is actually the Apocalypse, which contains
the future history of the Piscean Age. 
     A mighty angel calls for someone worthy of opening the
scroll. Bahá'u'lláh, the Lion of Judah, will sit on the Throne of
David during the Leo-Aquarian Age; he has prevailed and wins the
right. But he offers the book to the Bab, who will bear the title
"the Lamb who was slain" during the Leo-Aquarian Age. The Bab is
found worthy of receiving the scroll from Bahá'u'lláh and
revealing its contents.


THE BOOK OF SEVEN SEALS:

And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book
written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals.  And
I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy
to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?   And no man in
heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open
the book, neither to look thereon.  And I wept much, because no
man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to
look thereon. -Rev 5:1-4      

     The 'book' or 'scroll' is none other than the Apocalypse
itself, revealed by Jesus to John circa 104 CE, and reveals the
Age of Pisces. The future spiritual history of the Piscean Age
will be revealed in 7 unsealed phases.

THE LION OF JUDAH:

5 And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion
of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open
the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. -Rev 5:5    
  
[NIV: 5 "Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the
Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and
its seven seals."] {1}

     The title of 'Lion' represents the emblem of authority
associated with Judah/Leo. In Genesis we read

"Judah, a lions whelp. ... The sceptre will not pass from Judah,
nor the staff from between his feet, until he receives what is
his due and the obedience of the nations is his. ... he washes
his cloak in wine, his robe in the blood of grapes. Darker than
wine are his eyes, .... ." -Gen 49:9-12 (REB)

     The title 'Lion' has been attached to several potentates in
Jewish history. In Ezekiel we read:

'Raise a dirge over the rulers of Israel and say: What a lioness
was your mother among the lions! She made her lair among the
young lions and reared her cubs...' -Ezekiel 19:1-2 (REB)

     One of the 'Lions' was Joseph {2} ; later, another 'Lion'
was brought "in a cage" before the king of Babylon: 

'he was put into prison that his roar might never again be heard
on the mountains of Israel.' -Ezekiel 19:9 

     This 'Lion' was Mattaniah-Zedekiah {3} who was brought to
Babylon "bound in bronze fetters." Zedekiah's sons were "slain
before his eyes," then he was blinded.

      Indeed, after Jehoaiakim, there was no direct male
descendent of David to sit on the 'Throne of David.' 
Furthermore, the kingdom of David cannot be restored on the male
descendence of David!  God placed a proviso on His oath that He
would set up a prince among David's lineal male descendents on
the Throne of David: 

"The Lord swore this oath to David, an oath which he will not
break: 'A prince of your own line I will set up on your throne. 
If your sons keep my covenant and heed the teaching that I give
them, their sons in turn for all time will occupy your throne.' "
-Ps 132:11-12 (REB)

       Sad to say, one of David's descendents broke a Commandment
and violated the Covenant. In the 7th century BCE, the king
Manasseh imported an idol of the pagan deity Asherah into the
Holy of Holies.{5} The prophet Jeremiah was delegated the
authority of giving the descendents of David a second chance. 
That failing, the male line, at least, was cut off forever. {6}

Furthermore, in addition to the kings of Israel, the Covenant
was also broken by the people of Israel: 

"You have violated my covenant and have not fulfilled the terms
to which you yourselves had agreed before me; so I shall treat
you like the calf which was cut in two for all to pass between
the pieces, the officers of Judah and Jerusalem, the eunuchs and
priests, and all the people of the land." -Jeremiah 34:18-19
(REB)

       Many claim that Jesus sits on the Throne of David through
his descendence from David on his mother's side. Be that as it
may, the Davidic king, if one had existed with the Advent of
Jesus, would only "prepare a lamp for my anointed one." {7}
Indeed, Jesus posed the paradox of the 'Anointed One' being of
higher rank than David and that the Messiah is not a descendent
of David. 

.... 'How can the scribes maintain that the Messiah is a son of
David? It was David himself who said, when inspired by the Holy
Spirit, "The Lord said to my Lord, 'Sit at my right hand until I
put your enemies under your feet.'"  David himself calls him
"Lord"; how can he be David's son?'-Mark 12:35-37 (REB) {8} 

      There is no record of Jesus, BY HIS OWN WORDS, claiming to
sit on the WORLDLY Throne of David. In fact, Jesus disavowed this
claim:

...... [Pilate asks] 'So you are the king of the Jews?'.... Jesus
replied, 'My kingdom does not belong to this world. If it did, my
followers would be fighting to save me from the clutches of the
Jews. My kingdom belongs elsewhere.' -REB: John 18:33-36

     But if Jesus was a descendent of David, and if a descendent
of David cannot sit on the WORLDLY Throne of David, how could
Jesus be the Messiah?

     The answer is that Jesus the Messiah, like every other
Manifestation of God, sits on a SPIRITUAL throne and not on a
WORLDLY throne. Just as David claimed kingship, and Melchizedek
claimed priesthood, not through ancestral lineage, but through a
direct bestowal from God {10}, Jesus claimed his authority from
a higher source:

"I do nothing on my own authority, but in all I say, I have been
taught by my Father." -John 8:28 (REB)

     As a 'priest of the order of Melchizedek,' the authority of
Jesus did not terminate with his crucifixion nor with his genetic
line of descent.
     In contrast to Jesus, Bahá'u'lláh revealed, unequivocally
{9}, that he, Bahá'u'lláh, "ruleth upon the throne of David." 
Some may consider Bahá'u'lláh's claim to the Throne of David to
be valid on genetic grounds, since he is of the same line as
David but is not descended from David. Bahá'u'lláh is genetically
descended both from Abraham and from Jesse, the father of David,
and there are no legitimate claimants to the throne through
David's male descendents.{4} But God's (broken) contract with
David concerned only David's lineal male descendents. Nor is
there any evidence that Bahá'u'lláh claimed the Throne of David
through genetic descendance;  Bahá'u'lláh spoke of his authority
as descending from the 'Ancient Root' {20} Similarly, we find
Jesus claiming

"I am the root and the offspring of David, .." Rev 22:19 

     The Ancient Root is apparently the Root of the Tree of Life,
the 'Sacred Lote-Tree.' {21} The Family of Prophets are the
Fruits of that Tree, and they are all related to one another in
some mysterious way known only to God and to themselves. 
     Jesus, the Messiah, will sit on the Throne of Heaven during
the Piscean Age {11}, but Jesus does not triumph over the nations
as prophesied in Genesis. {12}  After the Piscean Age {13}, the
sovereignty of Jesus will be terminated, and it is Bahá'u'lláh
who sits on the Throne of Heaven as the King of Glory, and it is
he who also bears the title the Lion of Judah, the Root of David. 

     The words in Genesis: 

'he washes his cloak in wine, his robe in the blood of grapes.
Darker than wine are his eyes, .... .' -REB: Genesis 49:11-12

refer to Bahá'u'lláh's red cloak and his stunning eyes. The
"blood of grapes" also refers to his role as the Lord of the
Vineyard, the Divine Reaper:

'Who is this coming from Edom, from Bosrah with his garments
stained red, striding along with mighty power?' It is I
proclaiming victory, I, who am strong to save. 'Why are your
garments all red, like the garments of one treading grapes in the
winepress?' -REB: Isaiah 63:1-2

     When Bahá'u'lláh was exiled to Iraq, his entire property was
confiscated, including his clothing. His loved ones pieced
remnants of cloth together to make him a cloak. It was dyed
red.{14}

     In the Ages prior to Leo-Aquarius, the Lion was not one of 
the Pillars of the Age. But in the future Age that John is
permitted to glimpse, he is told that the Lion of the tribe of
Judah has 'triumphed,' and can now open the scroll. That is,
since Leo is now dominant at the Fall equinox, the previous Age
of Virgo-Pisces now lies before him like an open book.      
     The four corners of the Piscean Age are Pisces/Zebulon,
Sagittarius/Joseph, Virgo/Dinah, and Gemini/Simeon-Levi. The
influence of these signs during the Piscean Age will become
evident as the seals are broken. In the Leo-Aquarian Age, the
four corners are to be Leo/Judah, Taurus/Issachar,
Aquarius/Reuben, and Flying Eagle/Manasses. {15} The dominance of
the signs in our future history will become evident during the
next two millennia.

THE LAMB WITH SEVEN HORNS AND SEVEN EYES:

6 And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the
four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it
had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the 
seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. -Rev 5:6   

[REB: 6 Then I saw a Lamb with the marks of sacrifice on him,
standing with the four living creatures between the throne and
the elders. He had seven horns and seven eyes, the eyes which are
the seven spirits of God sent to every part of the world.]      

     Aries the Ram or 'Lamb' is the first sign of the zodiac. In
the twenty centuries immediately preceding the Age of Pisces,
Aries was the sun's dawning house at Springtime. {16} However,
the inexorable precession of the equinoxes caused the dawning
point of Spring to enter Pisces at about the time of the
Manifestation of Jesus the Messiah. Thus the 'Lamb was
sacrificed' to make way for the new AGE. But astrologers say that
Spring always occurs under the SIGN of Aries, regardless of the
CONSTELLATION where the sun resides during that season. Thus,
since the constellation at Spring is never Aries, it can be said
that the Lamb is always 'sacrificed' each time a new Age occurs.
The 'Lamb' is therefore a perfect symbol for Supreme Sacrifice,
and some astrologers even suggest that the religious ritual of
lamb-sacrifice began in the Near East at about the same time as
the Age of Aries.      
     Be that as it may, we observe that a Sacrificial Hero seems
to be necessary for the birth of any Divinely revealed Faith.
Most of these Sacrificial Heroes are known from the historical
record, and, in some Dispensations, such as those of Jesus Christ
and the Bab, the Manifestation himself may actually climb the
'lofty summit of great martyrdom.'  
     But the Lamb that John sees in his vision of the Leo-
Aquarian Age has special attributes: 7 'horns' and 7 'eyes.' A
'horn' is a 'handle,' that is, a name. The 'eyes' are stars, and
the 7-stars represent the Seven Spirits of God that are sent to
EVERY PART OF THE WORLD. Thus it is clear that the Lamb of the
Leo-Aquarian Age consummates the Sacrificial Heroes of all
7-Churches, regardless of the names by which they may be called.  
   
     There is one Figure in the Leo-Aquarian Age who meets these
requirements- the Bab. As Jesus opened the 'door' to the Age of
Pisces, the Bab (= 'Gate') opened the 'door' to the Age of
Leo-Aquarius. His Supreme Sacrifice opened the door that
permitted the Manifestation of Bahá'u'lláh, Who holds the seven
stars in His right hand of power. Bahá'u'lláh, the Lion of the
Leo-Aquarian Age, passes the scroll to the Bab, the Lamb of the
Leo-Aquarian Age. Thus we see that the power to open the scroll
actually comes from Bahá'u'lláh.     
     It was the Bab Who broke the seals of prophetic works by
being the first Manifestation to reveal the occult meanings of
certain crucial symbols used in those texts. But the Bab broke
the seals in another way, by fulfilling certain prophecies of the
texts, and in particular, parts of the Apocalypse. The unsealing
that was begun by the Bab was continued by Bahá'u'lláh, as will
become evident as the scroll is unrolled.{17}   

PRAISE TO THE LAMB:

And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that
sat upon the throne.  And when he had taken the book, the four
beasts and the four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb,
having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odors,
which are the prayers of the saints. -Rev 5:7-8

THE NEW SONG: 

9 And they sung a new song, saying. Thou art worthy to take the
book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and
hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and
tongue, and people, and nation; 10 And hast made us unto our God
kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.  And I
beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the
throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was
ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; 
Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to
receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour,
and glory, and blessing.  And every creature which is in heaven,
and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the
sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and
honour, and glory, and power, be unto the Lamb for ever and ever. 
And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders
fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever. -Rev
5:9-14     

[REB 9-10   "and they were singing a new song: 'You are worthy to
receive the scroll and break its seals, for you were slain and by
thy blood you bought for God people of every tribe and language,
nation and race. You have made them a royal house of priests for
our God, and they shall reign on earth."]       

     The new song is the message of the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh.
".... the divines and doctors  ... have ... refused to incline
their ears unto the divine Melody."  -BH {18} Unlike the messages
of previous Ages, the Leo-Aquarian message is to be directed to
the people of EVERY tribe and language, nation and race, not
primarily directed, for example, to the tribes of Israel, nor to
the speakers of Hebrew, Greek, Arabic of Sanskrit, nor to
Persians, Indians, Americans, Semites or Caucasians.
      Although the Bab has earned the right to break the seals,
the grant to do so comes from the One on the throne. "...
whatsoever My Previous Manifestation and Harbinger of My Beauty
(the Bab) hath revealed hath been My Revelation and the
proclamation of My Cause." -BH {19}
                     
                     CHAPTER 6- THE BOOK IS OPENED 


SYNOPSIS:

     The breaking of the first six seals will reveal a synopsis
of the Piscean Age. The seventh seal (not to be broken until
Chapter 8) will reveal a detailed spiritual history of the
Piscean Age in 7 further stages of revelation.       
     The breaking of the first four seals will reveal the
venomous forces that will dominate the world of man.  These
forces are (1) Corruption of the Word of God, (2) Warmongering,
(3) Economic Injustice, and (4) Ungodliness.     
     The breaking of the fifth seal will reveal the fate of the
righteous.      
     The breaking of the sixth seal will reveal the fate of the
mischief makers.  


THE FIRST SEAL IS OPENED:

1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard,
as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying,
Come and see. -Rev 6:1   

[REB: 1 "... I heard one of the four living creatures say in a
voice like thunder, ...]       

     One of the Four Pillars invites John to "come and see" what
is destined to happen in the Age of Pisces.  

And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a
bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth
conquering, and to conquer. -Rev 6:2        

     Several clues have been given in previous verses that
identify this venomous force, notably in the letters to the 7
Churches. Looking back over the Age of Pisces we observe that
there was only one villain that rode a white horse- perverted
religion. He began his career feigning virtues as white as the
driven snow. Corruption of the Word of God was the secret weapon
of this proud villain, and there was no part of the world that
was safe from his arrows of false propaganda.  
     Who gave the crown to the rider of the white horse? It was
given to him by Jesus and the other Manifestations of God, but
the rider betrayed the trust:


The Lord said to me, 'Equip yourself again as a shepherd, a
worthless one; for I am about to install a shepherd in the land
who will neither care about any that are gone missing, nor search
for those that have strayed, nor heal the injured, nor nurse the
sickly, but will eat the flesh of the fat beasts and throw away
the broken bones. -REB: Zechariah 11:15-16

THE SECOND SEAL IS OPENED:

And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast
say, Come and see.  And there went out another horse that was
red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace
from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there
was given unto him a great sword. -Rev 6:3-4        

     The zodiacal wheel rolls onward: John now sees a
blood-colored horse ridden by the Maker of War. As Pride was the
secret heart of the rider of the white horse, it is Lust for
Power that motivates this rider. He holds in his hand the Sword
of Conquest.  

THE THIRD SEAL IS OPENED:

And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast
say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he
that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand. 6 And I heard
a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat
for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see
thou hurt not the oil and the wine. -Rev 6:5-6   

[REB: 6  ... 'A day's wage for a quart of flour, a day's wage for
three quarts of barley-meal! But do not damage the olive oil and
the vine!]       

     The black horse reveals the dark attributes of this force.
Greed and Envy will motivate this horse's rider, and he holds in
his hands the unbalanced scales of Economic Injustice. The victim
of the transaction is permitted survival rations for his labors,
but is denied the commodities of luxury.    

THE FOURTH SEAL IS OPENED:

And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the
fourth beast say, Come and see. 8 And I looked, and behold a pale
horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed
with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of
the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death,
and with the beasts of the earth. -Rev 6:7-8   

[REB: 8 There as I looked was another horse, sickly pale; its
rider's name was Death, and Hades followed close behind. To them
was given power over a quarter of the earth, power to kill by
sword and famine, by pestilence and wild beasts.]       

     We are primarily interested in the 'hidden' or spiritual
meanings of the words on the INSIDE of the scroll: The pallid
horse has the color of Indifference, and its rider is the Death
of Unbelief. Death and hell have the power to kill the spirit of
man with the rapier of sin, deprivation of the Word of God, the
sickness of despair, and ungodly leadership (beasts of the
earth). 

THE FIFTH SEAL IS OPENED:

And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the
souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the
testimony which they held:  And they cried with a loud voice,
saying. How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and
avenge our blood on them that dwell on earth?  And white robes
were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them,
that they should rest for a little season, until their fellow
servants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they
were, should be fulfilled. -Rev 6:9-11        

     The martyrs of the Piscean Age are found to be hidden "under
the altar," revealing the true perpetrators as the priesthood
itself. The martyrs, including Christians, Muslims, and the
righteous of other Faiths, must wait a short time until the
martyrs of the Leo-Aquarian Age have shed their blood also.
(About twenty to thirty thousands have been martyred for the
Causes of the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh.) 

THE SIXTH SEAL IS OPENED:

And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there
was a great earthquake; and the sun became as black as sackcloth
of hair, and the moon became as blood;  And the stars of heaven
fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely
figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.  And the heaven
departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every
mountain and island were moved out of their places.  And the
kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the
chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every
free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the
mountains;  And said to the mountains and the rocks, Fall on us,
and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and
from the wrath of the Lamb:  For the great day of his wrath is
come; and who shall be able to stand? -Rev 6:12-17        

     These verses contain several symbols used by the prophets:   

     Earthquake- Shaking of the worldly order. {1}

     Sun, moon, stars- The 'heavenly hierarchy' of prophets,
church leaders, saints, priests, elders, .. {2}

     'Heavens rolled up like a scroll,' etc.-  Removal of the
heavenly order. {3}

     Mountains, valleys- Peoples, nations, religions,
institutions. {4}

     Dens, islands, rocks- Strongholds, places of safety. {5}

     If the divines of the Age of Pisces accept the new
Manifestation, they will become enlightened; otherwise, they will
become 'darkened' and their teachings will turn from water into
blood; the world hierarchy of church potentates, leaders and
clergy will lose their power; nations, religions and institutions
will disappear.         
     "In another sense, by the terms 'sun,' 'moon,' and 'stars'
are meant such laws and teachings as have been established in
every Dispensation, such as the laws of prayer and fasting ...
Hence, it is clear and manifest that by the words 'the sun shall
be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars
shall fall from heaven' is intended the waywardness of the
divines, and the annulment of laws firmly established by Divine
Revelation ..." -BH {6} "Speed out of your sepulchers. How long
will ye sleep? ... The earth has quaked with a great quaking, and
cast forth her burdens ... the mountains have become like flocks
of wool ... the people are sore vexed at the awful majesty of the
Cause of God.  Witness how their houses are empty ruins, and they
themselves a drowned host ... The All-Merciful hath come down in
the clouds of knowledge, clothed with manifest sovereignty ...
The heaven of every religion hath been rent, and the earth of
human understanding been cleft asunder, and the angels of God are
seen descending ... The mountains have passed away, and the
heavens have been folded together, and the whole earth is held
within His grasp ..."  -BH {7}
                  
                  CHAPTER 7- GOD'S SERVANTS ARE SEALED


SYNOPSIS:
     
     Before the opening of the seventh seal, the four angels who
will control the square earth during the Age of Pisces-Virgo are
ordered to avoid hurting the inhabitants of he world until the
righteous have been 'sealed.' The order is given by Muhammad, the
Seal of the Prophets, who will ascend from the east during the
Age of Pisces.
     The sealed will include twice-72 multitudes of souls from
every nation, race, Age, Faith and culture. This is twice the
usual number of former Ages, because of the Twin Manifestation
that will appear at the beginning of the future Age of Leo-
Aquarius.
     John is informed that the twice-72 multitudes are arrayed in
'white robes' because they have overcome the great trial of
overcoming the false teachings within their Faiths.


GOD'S SERVANTS ARE SEALED:

And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four
corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that
the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any
tree.  And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having
the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the
four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, 
Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till
we have sealed the servants of God in their foreheads. -Rev 7:1-3 
   
     Wind is the holy Breath of God that is wafted over the
worlds of matter and spirit. These verses portend the wrath of
God during the Age of Pisces; but the 'wind' will blow again in
the Age of Leo-Aquarius: "Out of thee (Baghdad House) hath gone
the Breath of the All-Glorious, a Breath that hath breathed over
all created things, and filled with joy the breasts of the devout
that dwell in the mansions of Paradise." -BH {1}
      Earth or soil is the world of man. " .... the clouds of
truth will continue to the end that hath no end to rain on the
soil of human capacity, reality and personality their favors and
bounties ..." -BH {2}
      The Tetrad of angels will control the corners of the square
earth during the Piscean Age. As explained previously, the
corners are called Pisces, Sagittarius, Virgo and Gemini. The
influence of these 4 signs will become evident as the scroll is
unrolled.
      The Angel of the East is Muhammad, the Seal of the
Prophets, not yet manifested in the first century CE, Who, as we
shall see in Chapter 9, will command His followers not to hurt
the righteous.
      The sea is the spiritual existence of man and the sources
of inspiration. "The seas of Divine wisdom and divine utterance
have risen under the breath of the breeze of the All-Merciful." 
A tree is a source of spiritual guidance. A tree can also
represent a nation. "Advance, O people, with snow-white faces and
radiant hearts, unto the blest and crimson Spot, wherein the 
[Tree of Guidance] is calling: 'Verily there is none other God
beside Me, the Omnipotent Protector, the Self-Subsisting."  ...
"Ye are the fruits of one tree, and the leaves of one branch." -
BH {3}

THE 144-THOUSAND: 

And I heard the number of them which were sealed, and there  were
sealed a hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of
the children of Israel. -Rev 7:4

     'Israel' means literally 'he who strives with God.' Ancient
Hebrew mystics considered Israel to be a microcosm of humanity,
and Israel's history of spiritual struggle as representative of
all mankind.
     In astrological works, the 12 'parts' of the human organism
were correlated with the 12 signs of the zodiac. In a similar
way, the 12 tribes of Israel were considered to be mystically
correlated with the zodiac and stellar influences over the world
of man. For example, the 12 loaves of the shewbread and the 12
precious stones of the breastplate of the High Priest represented
both the 12 signs of the zodiac and the 12 Tribes.
     As explained in the Introduction, the correlation of the 12
Tribes with the zodiac are given in Genesis {4} where the
blessings of Jacob on his sons are word pictures describing the
astrological signs.
        What is the meaning of 'sealed.' It means that it shall
be made manifest at some later time. The sealed souls of verse 4
are to be manifested in the Age of Leo-Aquarius, and after the
events of the Piscean Age that are to commence with the breaking
of the 7th seal.
      In allusive language, the Greek word for 'thousands'
('chiliades') can mean 'multitudes,' in the same way that we
sometimes use the word today. (E.g., "There were 'thousands' of
people at the gathering.") Thus one reading of the number in
verse four is '144 multitudes.' The correctness of this reading
is supported by verse 9, since in that verse, John sees "a great
multitude which no man could number .... before the throne."     
The number '144' will come up again in verse 21:17 and has
profound significance. Cabalistically, it has an archetypal value
of Nine {5}, the seal of Bahá'u'lláh. Less obviously, 144, and
its half-value 72, have astrological, mystical and mathematical
significance.
       Let's consider the astrological significance first.
According to astrologers, each sign of the zodiac emits six types
of influence that determine the course of history and personality
types. For example, in addition to the overriding sign under
which a person is born, a personality can be influenced by a
combination of:  

(1) masculine or feminine 
(2) diurnal or nocturnal 
(3) commanding, melancholy, phlegmatic or sanguine 
(4) earthy, airy, fiery or watery 
(5) hot or cold 
(6) dry or wet

       Thus in pre-Leo-Aquarian Ages, there were seventy-two
(6-times-12) of these types of influence radiating from the total
zodiac. But in the Age of Leo-Aquarius, there are twice the usual
number of 'Elders seated abound the throne' {6}. Consequently,
the number of influence types is doubled to produce 144.
        The mystical significance of 72 will be considered very
briefly. It is a number that appears in marvelous ways throughout
the spiritual history of Man. For example:

       There were 72 Elders under Moses endowed with prophetic
ecstasy.{7}
      Some traditions say that Noah had 72 followers.
      Some versions of Luke 10:1 give 72 as the number of
disciples of Jesus.
      By the Pledge of 'Aqabah, 72 heroes of Medina fought for
Muhammad.
      Jewish legend says that 72 angels from heaven chopped off
the Serpent's hands and feet.
      According to the Hadith of Muhammad, there would be 72
sects of Islam.
      72 is the traditional number of Jewish scholars who
translated the Septuagint.
      The followers of Zoroaster were commanded to wear girdles
made of 72 threads.
      There are 72 stupas, each containing a sculptured Buddha,
atop the great temple at Borobudar, Java.
      72 of the disciples of Confucius had mastered the six arts. 
      72 Muslim companions fell with Imam Husayn on the Plain of
Karbila.
      In fulfillment of a prophecy, 72 Babi companions fell with
Mullah Husayn at Fort Shaykh Tabarsi. {22}
      72 was the number of Bahá'ís exiled to 'Akka. {23}
      
     According to ancient Hebrew mysticism, there are 72 hidden
names of 'YHWH' (the Hebrew 'Tetragrammaton,' or 'Yahweh.'){8} 72
is also associated with YHWH by 'klima,' an esoteric form of
number symbolism.{9}
       Lastly, we consider very briefly the mathematical
significance of 72. This number may be related to the 'M-pire map
problem' studied by modern mathematicians: {10} Consider a map of
only one country. It can be distinguished by a single color. Now
suppose that there are many adjacent autonomous countries. It now
requires just 4 colors to distinguish the countries from each
other. Next suppose that each country has one colony that should
be colored the same as the mother country. It now requires 12
colors. If each country has twelve colonies, it now requires 72
colors.
      The sequence is suggestive of astrological theology: That
is, the Figure on the Throne is single. He engenders 4 Central
Figures; who, in turn, engender 12 Elders; who in turn, engender
72 disciples; and so on. Thus the sequence may represent the
growth pattern of a perfectly bonded movement, each neophyte
being distinguished by the sequence of 'gates' through which
he/she enters the movement. In the case of Rev 7, the movement is
Divine, the only kind in which the members can be said to be
truly bonded.
       Thus we see another meaning of the word 'sealed.' The term
implies that the members of a Divinely revealed Faith are all
perfectly 'bonded' to the Manifestation, and hence to God.  

TWELVE-THOUSAND FROM EACH TRIBE:

Of the tribe of Juda were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of
Reuben were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Gad were
sealed twelve thousand.  Of the tribe of Asher were sealed twelve
thousand. Of the tribe of Nepthalim were sealed twelve thousand.
Of the tribe of Manasses were sealed twelve thousand.  Of the
tribe of Simeon were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Levi
were sealed twelve thousand. Of the tribe of Issachar were sealed
twelve thousand.  Of the tribe of Zabulon were sealed twelve
thousand. Of the tribe of Joseph were sealed twelve thousand. Of
the tribe of Benjamin were sealed twelve thousand. -Rev 7:5-8    

     For reasons already stated, the number of the sealed of each
tribe is 12 multitudes, twice the number of past Ages. Also, the
ordering of the list of tribes differs from that in Genesis.{11}
Furthermore, Manasses has been substituted for Dan in the Genesis
listing. 
       Why is Manasses substituted for Dan? We recall that the
more ancient name Flying Eagle was also substituted for the name
Scorpio in Rev 4:7. Thus the substitution is actually Manasses
(Flying Eagle) for Dan (Scorpio).
      Modern astrologers still assign both 'scorpion' and 'eagle'
attributes to the sign, and the application to personality type
depends upon the person's physiognomy. Apparently, in the New
Age, eagle attributes are to triumph over scorpion attributes.
      Let us revisit the descriptor of Dan in Genesis:

".. a viper on the road, a horned snake on the path ..." -REB:
Gen 49:17

     Not a pleasant picture, and astrologers often equate Scorpio
with the Serpent in Eden. The case is augmented by the prayer
following Dan's descriptor:

 "I wait in hope of salvation from you, Lord." - REB: Gen 49:18 

      Salvation from what? It can only be salvation from the
influence of Scorpio. Remember that astrological theology
postulates that God works through the zodiac and astrological
influences. In order to solve the 'problem of evil' (i.e., How
can a totally benevolent Creator allow evil to exist?), there
must be at least one zodiacal sign with malevolent attributes.
That sign must be Scorpio, since none of the remaining signs seem
to have had the power to harm man in such a baleful manner. The
'Serpent,' or his equivalent, has slithered his way into many
verses of the Bible and other sacred texts and religious art.     
     The substitution of Flying Eagle for Scorpio becomes even
more interesting when we analyze the descriptors of the Twelve
Apostles of Jesus. It was the expressed intention of Jesus that
the 12 Apostles would replace the 12 Tribes as the arbiters of
history {13}, and in a later chapter {14} we will find the names
of the Apostles inscribed on the foundations of the New
Jerusalem. Let us consider whether Jesus chose the Apostles in
accordance with the zodiacal signs:
      Admittedly, the record is scanty, but the existing evidence
suggests that He did so. Using Luke's list,{15} Peter the
Fisherman is the Fishes;  Mary (veiled) is the Virgin;  Levi the
Tax Collector is the Scales; Simon the Zealot is the Ram; Thomas
the Doubter is the Bull;  James and John are the Twins; Judas
Iscariot the Betrayer is the Scorpion.
     James and John are especially convincing, since Jesus called
them "sons of thunder" {16}, apparently alluding to the belief
among sailors of the time that Gemini watched over them during
storms and reassured them with the "voice" of thunder. Less
apparent is Andrew, also a fisherman, who might be the Water
Bearer. Judas, son of James, might be the Crab. We know virtually
nothing about the remaining three Apostles of Luke's list who
would have to be correlated with the Lion, the Archer and the
Goat.
     Assuming that our hypothesis is correct, what does this tell
us about Judas the Betrayer? It implies that Judas Iscariot WAS
CHOSEN TO BE THE BETRAYER in the great drama of the Crucifixion.
This would add meaning to the statement of Jesus:

... "Have I not I chosen the twelve of you? Yet one of you is a
devil."  -REB: John 6:70

It would also explain the puzzling episode recounted in John:
{17}

.... "Do quickly what you have to do." -REB: John 13:27

     Apparently, Judas was COMMANDED to do what he had to do as
his part in the Divine drama. 

     The rationale for the order of the Tribes in verses 7:5-8
becomes clear when we recognize that the list is astrological.
The list refers to Spiritual Generations, which is, which was,
and which is to come (Rev 1:4).
     To prove this {24}, we first recall that Rev 4:7 informs us
that the new Age is to have Leo as its leading sign, with its
fall-SPRING equinoctial axis at Leo-AQUARIUS. An inspection of
the list of Tribes in verses 7:5-8 reveals that, indeed,
Leo-AQUARIUS corresponds to the first two Tribes, that is: 

(1) Judah- (2) REUBEN = Leo-AQUARIUS

The next two names in the list correspond to the Age of ARIES-
Libra:

(3) GAD- (4) Asher = ARIES-Libra  

     The first four names inform us that the equinoctial axes are
to be specified in the list, and apparently without prejudice
as to the order of the equinoxes. Thus, we are invited to
coalesce all the names in the list of Tribes to correspond to the
equinoctial axes:


ORDER IN REV 7:5-8; TRIBAL NAMES = EQUINOCTIAL AXIS


1, 2; JUDAH, REUBEN = LEO-AQUARIUS OR AQUARIUS-LEO

3, 4; GAD, ASHER = ARIES-LIBRA OR LIBRA-ARIES

5, (12); NEPHTALI, (BENJAMIN) = CAPRICORN-CANCER or
CANCER-CAPRICORN

6, (9); MANASSEH, (ISSACHAR) = FLYING EAGLE-TAURUS or
TAURUS-FLYING-EAGLE

7 & 8, (11); SIMEON & LEVI*, (JOSEPH) = GEMINI-SAGITTARIUS or
SAGITTARIUS-GEMINI

10; ZEBULON, [DINAH]* = PISCES-[VIRGO]*

* Note: SIMEON & LEVI correspond to the single sign GEMINI, while
[DINAH] is 'veiled' and corresponds to the veiled sign [VIRGO].
See INTRODUCTION.


     Why are the equinoctial axes arranged in this particular
order? The answer can be found by referring to a circular
astrological diagram of the new heaven: 


      Future Ages:        New Age:        Past Ages: 


                            LEO
                             |
                  CANCER     |      [VIRGO]
                             |
                             |
              GEMINI         |           LIBRA
                             |
                             |
           TAURUS------------|------------FLYING EAGLE 
                             |
                             |
             ARIES           |          SAGITTARIUS
                             | 
                             | 
                 PISCES      |       CAPRICORN
                             |
                          AQUARIUS


                       THE NEW HEAVEN


     Starting at LEO, and ignoring [VIRGO] for the moment, it
will be seen that the list of Ages circulates between Present,
Past and Future:


ASTRO-AGE; Precession Order


LEO-AQUARIUS; New Age (Present)

LIBRA-ARIES; First Past Age

CANCER-CAPRICORN; First Future Age

FLYING EAGLE-TAURUS; Second Past Age

GEMINI-SAGITTARIUS; Second Future Age

PISCES; Last Future Age


     Let us take a closer look at [VIRGO]. It is skipped in the
counting because [DINAH] is 'veiled' and is never explicitly
listed among the Tribes. 

     Why are only six equinoctial axes defined in the list? The
answer to this question can be found in Genesis:

He called the light day, and the darkness night...; and God saw
all that he had made, and it was very good. Evening came, and
morning came; it was the sixth day. - REB: Genesis 1:5, 31
     
     God created the world in six 'days.' A 'day' is a 'morning
and an evening.'  In astrological terms, a 'Day' is an Age, and
an Age is identified by a Spring equinox (a 'morning') and a Fall
equinox (an 'evening'). Thus there are only six 'Days of
Creation' in the zodiacal calendar, while God rests on the
Seventh Day:

...; on the seventh day, having finished all his work, God
blessed the day and made it holy, ... REB: Gen 2:2-3 

     This brings to mind a very interesting prophecy of Jesus in
Mark: 

"... who will not receive in this age a hundred times as much --
houses, brothers and sisters, mothers and children, and land --
and persecutions besides; and in the age to come eternal life.
But many of the first will be last, and the last first." - REB:
Mark 10:30-31 

     Jesus' words may imply, among other things, that many of
those who are the first to accept his own Manifestation may be
the last to accept the Manifestation of the Age to come. But his
parable in Matthew ends with the same enigmatic prophecy:  

"So the last will be first, and the first last." -REB: Matt 20:16 

     Jesus' prophecy concerns the age to come, that is, the
advent of the Future Age. While many interpretations may
be given to his parable in Matthew, it also gives us a clue that
the Past will become Future and the Future will become Past. This
'Copernican inversion' of the zodiac will convert the Age of
PISCES from First Past into Last Future. 
     But there are even more interesting implications of Jesus'
prophecy. If we list the next 'Seven Days' in their future
sequence beginning at the Age of PISCES, they were:

First Day:   PISCES-[VIRGO]

Second Day:  AQUARIUS-LEO

Third Day:   CAPRICORN-CANCER

Fourth Day:  SAGITTARIUS-GEMINI

Fifth Day:   SCORPIO-TAURUS

Sixth Day:   LIBRA-ARIES 

Seventh Day: LEO-AQUARIUS*


*Note: Again skipping veiled [VIRGO]. 

     
     But in the New Age, the sequence of the next 'Seven Days'
becomes:


First Day:   LEO-AQUARIUS

Second  Day: CANCER-CAPRICORN

Third Day:   GEMINI-SAGITTARIUS

Fourth Day:  TAURUS-FLYING EAGLE

Fifth Day:   ARIES-LIBRA

Sixth Day:   PISCES-[VIRGO]

Seventh Day: AQUARIUS-LEO

     Indeed, we now see the fulfillment of Jesus' prophecy: "So
the last will be first, and the first last."  LEO-AQUARIUS, the
last 'Day' of the old zodiac, has become the first Day of the new
zodiac. Furthermore, PISCES-[VIRGO], the first Day of Creation in
the old zodiac, has become the last Day of Creation in the new
zodiac.  Finally, we see that LEO has now become both the first
and the last sign.  

     The prophecy of Jesus: "... and in the age to come eternal
life. ...," informs us that 'eternal life' is to occur in the Age
of LEO-AQUARIUS, not during his own Age of PISCES-[VIRGO]. Why is
this?
     We recall that the Day of Bahá'u'lláh is the 'Day not
followed by Night.' In all previous Ages, the Sun of the
Manifestation was beclouded by ensuing 'darkness.' But in this
New Age, the Divine Light will prevail and the Sun of Truth will
never set.  
     There is yet an another implication of the 'Day not followed
by Night.' There are now two 'Suns' in the spiritual heaven, not
one Sun. In the old zodiac, AQUARIUS would have been the 'Sun'
and LEO would have been the 'Moon'. But the Twin Manifestation
produces Two Suns at the Spring equinox, not to be followed by a
Moon at the Fall equinox. 


PRAISE TO GOD AND THE LAMB:

After this I beheld, and lo, a great multitude, which no man
could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people and
tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed
with white robes, and palms in their hands; 10 And cried with a
loud voice, saying. Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the
throne, and unto the Lamb.  And all the angels stood round about
the throne, and about the elders, and the four beasts, and fell
before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God,  Saying,
Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and
honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever.
Amen. -Rev 7:9-12     

[REB: 10  "and they shouted aloud: 'Victory to our God who sits
on the throne, and unto the Lamb!" 

     The righteous of all Ages, nations, races, and cultures will
be saved. The palm fronds signal glad tidings and victory.       
     As the Manifestation of God the Father, Bahá'u'lláh sits
upon the throne while the Manifestation of the Lamb Consummate,
the Bab, stands at the center of the throne.   

13 And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are they
which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? 14 And I
said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are
they which came out of the great tribulation, and have washed
their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 
Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day
and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall
dwell among them. -Rev 7:13-14 

[REB:  13 "One of the elders turned to me and asked, ...";  14
".... 'They are those who have passed through the great ordeal;
...]

       The great ordeal is the same in every Age and
Dispensation, and is summarized in Chapter 6. The ordeal is to
overcome the false teachings within the Church; to avoid
hypocrisy, false pride, the thirst for power, greed, envy, and
the temptations of the flesh. Above all, one must recognize the
sovereignty of the Manifestation, to accept the Sacrifice of the
Lamb by submitting one's own ego to the Will of God.  

They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall
the sun light on them, nor any heat.  For the Lamb which is in
the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto
living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears
from their eyes. -Rev 7:16-17  

        The scorching heat of the sun is the ubiquitous
tribulation of the righteous. Water is spiritual grace and
knowledge. "O My servants! Whoso hath tasted of this Fountain
hath attained unto everlasting Life, and whoso hath refused to
drink therefrom is even as the dead."  "Say, O ye who are as
dead! The Hand of Divine bounty proffereth unto you the Water of
Life. Hasten and drink your fill. Whoso hath been reborn in this
Day, shall never die; whoso remaineth dead, shall never live."  -
BH {18}
      As for hunger, "Glorified be He, Who is the Creator of all
names and attributes! Cast into the fire the tree that hath rot
and dried up, and abide under the shadow of the green and goodly
Tree, and partake of the fruit thereof."  -BH {19}
     God will dwell with man through the Bahá'í Universal House
of Justice. "These are they who are blessed by the Concourse on
high, who are glorified by the denizens of the everlasting
Cities, and beyond them by those on whose foreheads Thy most
exalted pen hath written, 'These! The people of Bahá'. Through
them [the Universal House of Justice] have been shed the
splendors of the light of guidance." -BH {20}

            CHAPTER 8- THE FATE OF THE EARLY CHRISTIAN CHURCH


SYNOPSIS:

     The future history of Christendom during the Piscean Age
will be revealed in 7 phases, each announced by a heralding
angel. 
     Chapter 8 reveals the fate of the early Christian Church and
will be announced by the first 4 heralds.
     An altar angel precedes the opening of the first seal. His
censer prepares the earth with a downpour of violence that will
accompany the Piscean Age.
     The first herald announces the first great persecution of
Christians, 110-238 CE.
     The second herald announces the second great persecution of
Christians, 249-311.
     The third herald announces the embitterment of Christianity
by Constantine the Great, beginning circa 325 CE.
     The fourth herald announces the Dark Age of Christendom,
circa 408-1054.
     John then hears the voice of the Flying Eagle. The Piscean
Age is more than half finished at the end of the Dark Age and the
Flying Eagle is "mid-heaven" on its way to its pillar at the
Leo-Aquarian Winter solstice. It warns of three "Woes" [Days of
the Lord] that will be announced by the last three heralds. The
three Woes are to be the Advents of Muhammad, the Bab and
Bahá'u'lláh.


A PAUSE BEFORE THE PROPHECIES:


And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in
heaven about the space of half an hour.  And I saw the seven
angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven
trumpets. -Rev 8:1-2

     The silence of half an hour separates the preamble of the
first 7 chapters from the prophecies of future historical events
that are to "shortly come to pass."

THE ALTAR ANGEL IS INTRODUCED:

And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden
censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should
offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar
which was before the throne.  And the smoke of the incense, which
came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out
of the angel's hand. -Rev 8:3-4

    A new actor, the 'altar angel,' is introduced. The altar
angel will reappear in Chapter 14, and his significance will
become more apparent at that time. Meanwhile, recall that at the
great Temple in Jerusalem, the altar of burnt-offerings was
located in the court of the children of Israel. However, only the
Sadducee priests were allowed to enter the court and perform the
oblations and sacrifices. The Gospels tell us that the priesthood
was not especially friendly toward Jesus, and with the
destruction of the Temple in 70 CE, the sacrifice came to an end.
Now, in the heavenly realm, John sees that the sacrifice has been
re-instituted, but now on Jesus' terms. The Apocalypse was
revealed to john circa 7-decades after the Crucifixion and
one-half-of-7 decades after the Fall of Jerusalem. 
     The golden censer indicates great piety; incense or perfume
is the fragrance of communion with God. "Thus counselleth you the
All-Knowing, the Faithful. We shall always be with you; if we
inhale the perfume of your fellowship, Our heart will assuredly
rejoice, for naught else can satisfy us." -BH {1}

FIRE IS CAST ONTO THE EARTH:

And the angel took the censer, and filled it with fire of the
altar, and cast it into the earth: and there were voices, and
thunderings, and lightnings, and an earthquake.  And the seven
angels which had the seven trumpets prepared themselves to sound.
-Rev 8:5-6

     Fire is variously a symbol of sacrifice, of purification, of
the rebuke of God, of destruction or torment. The voices are of
those who fall into trials and temptations. Thunder accompanies
the violation of the Covenant, and the lightning flashes are the
wrath and anger of God. These are accompanied by the earthquake
of doubts. -AB {2} 
     The Covenant is to be violated during the Age of Pisces.
Indeed, there have always been violators of the Covenant. Among
Christian theologians there are still burning questions
concerning the Successorship to Jesus, and the roles of Peter and
Paul. Equally hot questions surround the Successorship to
Muhammad.

THE FIRST TRUMPET BLAST:

The first angel sounded, and there followed hail and fire mingled
with blood, and they were cast upon the earth: and the third part
of the trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up. -Rev
8:7

     Verses 7 through 9 concern the impending series of
persecutions of the Christians by Rome from 110 until 311 CE. It
was during an earlier persecution that John was banished to
Patmos where he wrote the Apocalypse. 
     The persecutions of the early Christians can be divided into
3 series. A minor persecution began under the Emperor Nero in 64
CE as a result of his blaming the Christians for the Great Fire
of Rome. The first great persecution began in 110 CE, about 6
years after the writing of the Apocalypse, as a result of the
Roman State stigmatizing Christianity as a crime. This
persecution lasted sporadically until 238 CE. In the last phase
of this persecution, attempts were made to destroy the clergy as
propagators of the Faith.
    Hail and fire  mingled with blood represent great tests from
heaven and wrath accompanied by death. "Green grass" are the
righteous Christians; "trees" are their spiritual leaders. Verse
7 says that all the righteous Christians and one-third of the
spiritual leaders will be destroyed during the first great
persecution, 110-238 CE. {3}

THE SECOND TRUMPET BLAST:

And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain
burning with fire was cast into the sea: and the third part of
the sea became blood;  And the third part of the creatures which
were in the sea, and had life, died; and the third part of the
ships were destroyed. -Rev 8:8-9

     These verses warn of the second great persecution of 249-311
CE. Initiated by the emperor Decius, it was continued with
increased vigor under the emperor Diocletian. The cause of this
persecution was primarily an attempt to reverse the course of
social decay and decline in Roman morality through a revival of
the ancient pagan cult. This last and most severe of the
anti-Christian campaigns resulted in executions, torture, book
and church burnings on a large scale.
     As previously noted, a mountain is a religion. The ship was
an early symbol of a church, a 'refuge of safety and peace in a
sea of chaos.' The influence of Pisces is apparent here- "the
creatures which are in the sea" are floundering souls. Just as
some grass is 'green,' some fishes are 'alive' and will have
become followers of Jesus. 

... "Come with me, and I will make you fishers of men." -REB:
Matt 4:19
 
     When the second herald sounds, the great mountain of
Christianity will seem to have been sent flaming into the sea of
destruction and chaos. The sea will become as death-blood, and
one-third of those Christians who are in the sea of tribulation
will lose their spiritual life. One third of the churches will be
destroyed. 

THE THIRD TRUMPET BLAST:

And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from
heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third
part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters;  And the
name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the
waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because
they were made bitter. -Rev 8:10-11

     Constantine the Great, ended the persecutions and made
Christianity the official Faith of Rome. Wishing to consolidate
his empire with the aid of Christianity, he was determined to
bring an end to the theological and doctrinal disputes, often
querulous, that had plagued the Christian Church since the rift
between Peter and Paul. He called the Council of Nicea in 325 CE
to resolve these disputes. Although the Nicene Creed that
'defined' a Christian came out of this council, the quarrels
between the several factions became embittered beyond resolution.
Numerous heresies and schisms resulted from Constantine's
totalitarian policy. His policy was continued by most of his
successors, and eventually resulted in the Theodosian Code of 438
that inflicted the death penalty on those who denied the doctrine
of the Trinity! In various forms, many of the bitter arguments
between the early Christian factions persist to this day.      
     Christianity was divided into three major streams- the
Eastern stream flowing from Constantinople, the Western stream
flowing from Rome, and the third stream flowing from the
schismatic Asian and African churches. Constantine 'the Great 
Star,' had his greatest influence over the "third of the waters"
flowing from Constantinople. Eventually, the policy initiated by
Constantine resulted in the bitter Schism of 1054 that decisively
split the Eastern and Western streams of the Church. Constantine
became a "fallen star" and "Wormwood." 
     Rivers and fountains are the mainstreams of spiritual
guidance. "From time immemorial even unto this day, all the
kindreds and peoples of the earth have clung to ... fanciful and
unseemly thoughts, and thus have deprived themselves of the clear
waters streaming from the springs of purity and holiness. .."
"They drink of the tainted water, and know it not." -BH {5}

THE FOURTH TRUMPET BLAST:

And the fourth angel sounded, and the third part of the sun was
smitten, and the third part of the moon, and the third part of
the stars; so as the third part of them was darkened, and the day
shone not for a third part of it, and the night likewise. -Rev
8:12

     The prophecy concerns the period of history known as the
Dark Age of Europe that began with the invasion of the West by
the Visigoths under Alaric the Bold in 408. The smiting  of the
West resulted in a third part of the "sun, moon and stars" (the
'heavenly hierarchy') being cut off from the mainstream of
Christianity. The result was a malevolent darkening of the Church
that lasted about 6 centuries. 
     Two baleful episodes during the Dark Age will be mentioned
very briefly. One was the Photian Schism of 869. The schism
resulted from a clash between pope Nicholas I of Rome, and
Photius, the patriarch of Constantinople. It concerned a number
of theological issues, but, in particular, the 'trichotomy
dispute.' According to trichotomism, man is composed of body,
soul and spirit. As a result of the schism, Western man,
dogmatically, has only a body and a soul (dichotomism ). The mind
of Western man became more firmly controlled by the papacy, with
profound effects felt to this day. Some effects have been the
'mindless soldier' and the ascendence of materialism in the West.
     The nadir of the Church was probably reached in the middle
of the tenth century when the papacy fell under the de facto
control of two women of ill repute, Theodora and Morozia. This
period of papal history is called the 'Pornocracy.'
     Verse 12 says that the Church will become darkened for a
third part of the Lord's Day and the third part of the ensuing
night. The Lord's Day commenced with the Advent of Jesus Christ
(circa 5 BCE) and ended with the Advent of Muhammad (circa 613
CE), a period of about 617 years. Thus the day will be darkened
for one-third of the Lord's Day (about 206 years), or the period
from 408 to 613 CE.
     A "Night" is the period between two Divine Revelations when
the Sun of Truth is not manifest among men. {6} The Sun of
Muhammad was eclipsed by the usurpation of the caliphate by the
House of Umayyah in 661, and did not shine again until the
Declaration of the Bab in 1844, a period of about 1183 years.
Thus the prophecy says that the Dark Age will end after another
394 years, the period from 661 until 1055. This last date is very
close to the Great Schism of 1054.  

THE THREE WOES TO COME:

13 And I beheld, and heard an angel flying through the midst of
heaven, saying with a loud voice, Woe, woe, woe, to the
inhabiters of the  earth by reason of the other voices of the
trumpet of the three angels, which are about to sound!. -Rev 8:13 

[REB: 13 "As I looked, I heard an eagle calling with a loud cry
as it flew in mid-heaven: ...] 

     In 1054 CE, the constellation Flying Eagle (aka Scorpion)
was about midway between its original position that it had at the
beginning of the Piscean Age and its future position that it
would take as a Pillar (corner) of the Leo-Aquarian Age. John
"hears" the eagle warning of three more "Woes" to come.
     Ezekiel tells us what a Woe is:  

"Son of man, prophesy and say, Thus saith the Lord God; Howl ye,
Woe worth the day! For the day is near, even the day of the Lord
is near, a cloudy day; it shall be the time of the heathen." -Ez
30:2-3

     A Woe is a Lord's Day, that is, the Advent of a
Manifestation of God. 'Abdu'l-Bahá tells us, "Therefore it is
certain that the day of woe is the Day of the Lord; for in that 
day woe is for the neglectful, woe  is for the sinners, woe is
for the ignorant." -AB {4}
     The Advent of Jesus the Messiah was one such Woe. But now
John is told that three more Woes will be announced in the
Apocalypse. The three Woes to come will be the Advents of
Muhammad, the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh.
     In astrological symbolism, the three Woes correspond to the
'fiery triplicity,' that is, Sagittarius, Aries and Leo. The
wrath of God that will attend Sagittarius the Archer will be
announced in Chapter 9. The wrath of Aries the Lamb has been
previewed in 6:16. The wrath of Leo the Lion will be the subject
of the last 9 Chapters.
     In each Dispensation, 'wrath' attends the judgement of the
mischief makers of the dying civilization. Following His role as
a 'bringer of the wrath of God,' the Manifestation assumes His
role as a Pillar of the Age. That is why the signs of Jesus are
both a Lamb and a Fish, and the signs of the Bab are both a Lamb
and a Man.
                   
                   CHAPTER 9- THE FALL OF CHRISTENDOM


SYNOPSIS:


     Chapter 9 describes the impact of Islamdom on Christendom.  
     The 5th herald announces the catastrophe experienced by
Christendom following the Ascension of Muhammad, the first Woe.
The forces of the illegitimate caliphate overpower the schismatic
Asian and African churches. The duration of the "plague" is given
as 150 years, beginning with the Fall of Jerusalem in 637 and
ending with the peak of the Muslim empire under Caliph Harun ar-
Rashid in 786. The secret king of the illegitimate caliphate is
Abu-Sufyan, the arch-enemy of Muhammad and patriarch of the
infamous House of Umayyah.
     The 6th herald announces and describes the Fall of
Constantinople and Eastern Christendom to the Ottoman Turks in
1453. The duration of the power of the Ottomans is given as 391
years, to be terminated by the Advent of the Bab, the second Woe,
in 1844.
     The rest of Christendom, infected by idolatry and other
perversions, does not repent. The result is the Protestant
Reformation and the decay of Christendom into thousands of sects. 
     


THE FIFTH TRUMPET BLAST:

And the fifth angel sounded, and I saw a star fall from heaven
unto the earth: and to him was given the key of the bottomless
pit.  And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke
out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and
the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.  And
there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth; and to them
was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power.  And
it was commanded of them that they should not hurt the grass of
the earth, neither any green thing, neither any tree; but only
those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads. -Rev
9:1-4

     The Muslim invasions of Asian and African Christendom began
circa 633 CE. While ferocious fighters of idol worshippers and
other enemies of monotheism, the early Muslim warriors were noted
for their justice and tolerance of other monotheistic Faiths,
notably Sabaeanism, Christianity and Judaism. It is important to
understand that the aggressive invasions by Islamdom were not
instigated by Muhammad but by the Caliphs (Successors) following
the Ascension of Muhammad.
     The question of the Successorship was the historical origin
of the Shi'ah and Sunni divisions of Islamdom. The first 4
Caliphs, often called the Rightly-Guided, generally followed the
policy enjoined by Muhammad. However, according to Shi'ah belief,
Muhammad had actually chosen His son-in-law 'Ali as His Caliph.
Although 'Ali later arose to His appointed station, He was
assassinated under mysterious circumstances before He could
consolidate His power. The caliphate fell to the Umayyad
pretender, Mu'awiyah, the son of Abu-Sufyan who was the
arch-enemy of Muhammad. The course of political intrigue set in
motion by Abu-Sufyan eventually achieved success, and, by
beclouding the principles of Islam, Abu-Sufyan became a "fallen
star." 
     While the Shi'ah have tenaciously promoted a caliphate based
on the legitimate descendants of 'Ali, the Sunni have argued that
the caliphate should go to the one most qualified for the
position.{1}
     The bottomless pit is the 'pit of error.' -AB {2} The smoke
arising from the pit symbolizes obscurement. The Sun of Truth was
obscured, and the atmosphere of nearness to God was stifled by
the smoke.  "As for them who have disbelieved in Him, they shall
be in the shadow of a black smoke." -BH {3}
      The plague of mounted Arabian warriors are described as
"locusts." The scorpion was a quickfirer that permitted rapid
discharge of arrows. (Apparently, in the 7th century zodiac,
'scorpion tendencies' still dominated over 'eagle tendencies.')
     Grass, green things and trees are the commoners, the
righteous people and their spiritual leaders. The command not to
hurt the righteous was given by Muhammad. {4} We recall that in
Chapter 7, verse 3, Muhammad 'sealed' the righteous. 

FIVE MONTHS OF TORMENT:

And to them it was given that they should not kill them, but that
they should be tormented five months: and their torment was as
the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man.  And in those
days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall
desire to die, and death shall flee from them. -Rev 9:5-6

     A 'prophetic day' is a year of calendar time, and a
'prophetic month' is 30 calendar years. Therefore five "months"
are 150 calendar years. The Muslim Empire was carved out in a
space of about 150 years from the Fall of Jerusalem in 637 until
the peak of the empire under Caliph Harun ar-Rashid in 786.

THE HORSEMEN DESCRIBED:

And the shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto
battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and
their faces were as the faces of men.  And they had hair as the
hair of women, and their teeth were as the teeth of lions.  And
they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the
sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses
running to battle. And they had tails like unto scorpions, and
there were stings in their tails; and their power was to hurt men
five months. -Rev 9:7-10

     John describes the appearance of the mounted Arabian
warriors as locusts, their quickfirers as scorpions, their arrows
as stings, and their chariots as wings. 
     The influence of Sagittarius the Archer is seen here. The
constellation Sagittarius has Scorpio following 'in its tail' and
is adjacent to the Southern Crown in the night sky. The word
picture of Sagittarius corresponds faithfully to modern
astrological descriptors. We recall that Sagittarius is one of
the four corners of the Piscean Age, and also belongs to the
fiery triplicity.

THE DESTROYER:

11 And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the
bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but
in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon. -Rev 9:11 

[REB: 11 ".... whose name in Hebrew is Abaddon, and in the Greek
Apollyon, the Destroyer.]

     The "Destroyer" was Abu-Sufyan, the arch-enemy of Muhammad
and His Revelation, the patriarch of the detestable House of
Umayyah, and the progenitor of the illegitimate caliphate. It was
during the Umayyad dynasty that the insidious practice was
introduced of fabricating traditions ascribed to Muhammad,
maligning and denigrating 'Ali. Several minions were bribed into
corrupting and distorting Muslim doctrine, text, belief and
practice. 

THE FIRST WOE IS PAST:

One woe is past; and behold there come two woes more hereafter. -
Rev 9:12

     The Woe that is past is the Advent of Muhammad. The two
remaining Woes are to be the Advents of the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh. 

THE SIXTH TRUMPET BLAST:

And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four
horns of the golden altar which is before God.  Saying to the
sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which
are bound in the great river Euphrates. 15 And the four angels
were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a
month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men. -Rev
9:13-15

[REB: 15 "... they had been held in readiness for this very year,
month, day, and hour."]

     (The Jewish altar of burnt offerings had a horn extending
from each of its four corners.  An oath was contracted by seizing
a horn of the altar with the right hand. The symbolism of the
Four can be found in the Introduction.) 
     We recall that the 4 angels have been introduced in Rev 7:1.
They correspond to the 4 'corners of the square earth' and
therefore control the events that are to transpire during the Age
of Pisces. They were 'held back' by Muhammad from 'hurting the
earth' until the servants of God were sealed. Now they are to be
loosed to do their damage to the world of man. 
     The prophecy concerns the Fall of Constantinople and Eastern
Christendom in 1453. For about three hundred years prior to their
arrival in Eastern Europe, Islamdom seemed to have been 'bound'
to the Euphrates river system with Eastern Christendom safely
protected from further incursions behind the formidable Taurus
mountain range. The Ottoman Turks, probably the most warlike of
the Muslim dynasties, ended this false sense of security when
they skirted the Taurus and crossed the Hellespont in 1357.
     By the year 1453, Christendom was again divided into three
streams represented by the Eastern Orthodox, the Roman Catholic,
and the anti-papist Christians who would soon become known as the
Protestant branch. The Fall of Constantinople was said to have
'cut off one-third of Christendom.'
     How long will the 4 angels have the power to do their
damage? The answer is given in verse 15: for a "year, month, day,
and hour." In calendar time, the computation is as follows:  

'PROPHETIC TIME' = CALENDAR TIME

1 'prophetic year' = 360 calendar years
1 'prophetic month' = 30 calendar years
1 'prophetic day' = 1 calendar year
1 'prophetic hour' = (to be determined)
...........................................................
Total time = 391 calendar years + an 'hour'

     We separate the term 'hour' to be discussed in more detail.  
 
    The duration of the wrath of the 4 angels is to be
approximately 391 calendar years. Adding 391 to 1453, the date of
the Fall of Constantinople, produces 1844, the date of the
Declaration of the Bab and the Second Woe. The Second Woe ended
the Dispensation of Muhammad and the power of the 4 angels who
controlled the world of man during the Age of Pisces.
     We now investigate the meaning of the "Hour."
     The "Hour' has already been encountered {5} and will be seen
again in later chapters. {6}  The term refers to the 'Hour of
Judgement,' that is, the moment when the Manifestation declares
His mission. Thus at verse 15, the meaning of the "Hour" is the
moment of the second Woe. Eastern Christendom fell to Islamdom on
May 30, 1453. The Declaration of the Bab was on May 23, 1844,
almost exactly 391 years later.

A TEST OF CREDULITY:

16 And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred
thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them.  And thus I
saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having
breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone; and the
heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their
mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone. -Rev 9:16-17

[REB: 16 "And their squadrons of cavalry numbered twice ten
thousand times ten thousand; this was the number I heard." 

      Two-hundred-million cavalry troops is enough to stretch the
credulity of even the most committed literalist. By comparison,
the Allies were able to muster only about one-percent of this
number of fighting men for the D-Day invasion during World War
II.
     Very little of the Apocalypse should or can be taken
literally. The rare places that literal interpretations apply
serve as guideposts to assure the seeker that he is on the right
path. As in Chapter 7, we are again forced to recognize that the
number is occult, not literal. John simply 'hears' the number, he
does not actually 'see' an endless array of 200,000,000 men on
horseback. 
     The significant number is the archetypal value of 'two'. The
verse should be read as 'two large armies.' Constantinople was
taken by two separate armies under the command of the Ottoman
Sultan Mehmet II: his own army of Muslim regulars and an
independent army of Christian Janissaries. In his vision John
describes their colorful breastplates as "fiery red, turquoise,
and sulphur-yellow ... " (REB)  In the imagery of the
first-century, he sees fifteenth-century flared cannons as
"horses" with mouths that roar like lions. The description of the
sulphurous (brimstone) smoke that issues from their mouths is
chemically accurate.

By these three was a third part of men killed, by the fire, and
by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their
mouths.  For their power is in their mouth, and in their tails:
for their tails were like unto serpents, and had heads, and with
them they do hurt. -Rev 9:18-19

     Mehmet employed Urban, an Hungarian engineer, to construct
the cannons for the assault. The largest of these was 26 feet
long and fired a ball weighing over half-a-ton! John explains,
quite accurately, that the breeches (tails) of the cannons
(horses) contain projectiles (serpent's heads) that strike the
enemy with great force.  

THE STATE OF THE SURVIVORS:

20 And the rest of the men which were not killed by these plagues
yet repented not of the works of their hands, that they should
not worship devils, and idols of gold, and silver, and brass, and
stone, and of wood: which neither can see, nor hear, nor walk: 
Neither repented they of their murders, nor of their sorceries,
nor of their fornication, nor of their thefts. -Rev 9:20-21

[REB: 20 "The rest of mankind who survived these plagues still
did not renounce the gods they had made, ...]

     John describes the state of affairs in Christendom and the
Church following the Fall of Eastern Christendom. Idolatry, in
the form of worship of icons and reliquaries, had existed in the
Church since the Dark Age. By 1453, the practice had further
degenerated into the worship of idols of the saints. Another
defilement was the selling of indulgences, the payment of money
as a substitute for penitence.
     The result of these and other abuses was the depressing
history of the Reformation. The period is notable for the
disastrous Thirty Years War (1618-1648) between Protestants and
Catholics, and the Black Mass. Witches seemed to abound
everywhere, with tens-of-thousands, real or imagined, being
tortured and burnt at the stake. Ultimately, the Christian Church
disintegrated into the thousands of sects that we see today. 
                          
                          CHAPTER 10- INTERLUDE


SYNOPSIS:

     Chapter 10 is an interlude, a resting space between the
prophecies concerning Christendom and Islamdom.
     The mighty angel of Bahá'u'lláh, the Lion of Judah, 
descends from the heavens with clouds, the rainbow of the
Covenant, and his face shining in midday splendor. His legs "like
pillars of fire" allude to the two "blazing" bronze pillars that
stood before Solomon's Temple, with occult names that prophesied
the Advent of Bahá'u'lláh.
     One of Bahá'u'lláh's works, THE HIDDEN WORDS, is shown to
John. The "little book" actually reveals the hidden words of the
7 Manifestations of the 7 Churches, who speak in 7 'thunderous
voices.' John proceeds to write down these words but is told to
'seal them up' because the time for their revelation has not yet
arrived. Bahá'u'lláh tells John that he must wait, but that the
hidden purpose of God will be revealed in the future at the
trumpet blast of the seventh herald.
     The "voice from heaven" then commands John to "swallow"
[believe in] the Hidden Words. When he does so, he discovers that
the words are easy to say but difficult to live by.
     Finally, John is told that he must start over, to prophesy a
second time concerning the spiritual history of the Piscean Age,
but this time to the peoples of Islam.


THE MIGHTY ANGEL OF THE COVENANT:

And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed
with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was
as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire. -Rev 10:1

[REB: 1 ".... and his legs were like pillars of fire."]

     The mighty angel is Bahá'u'lláh. As explained previously,
every Manifestation comes with the 'clouds' of glory that signal
both the bounty of heaven and the dread of judgement. The rainbow
about His head is the eternal Covenant that is renewed with each
Day of God. His countenance shines as the Sun at median splendor.
{1}
     His legs that shine like fire remind us of the two
magnificent bronze pillars that stood before Solomon's Temple
that Solomon named 'Boaz' and 'Jachin' {2}.  Possibly symbolic of
the pillars of cloud and fire that guided the Hebrews through the
wilderness {3}, they also have occult significance. For one, the
words literally mean 'Boaz will establish.' Boaz was the
grandfather of Jesse, and the great-grandfather of David. {4}
Bahá'u'lláh is a descendant of Boaz and Jesse; as such, He is the
'Branch out of the Stem of Jesse,' and the 'Scion from the Root
of Jesse.' {5} Among many marvelous things, Isaiah prophesied
that all the nations of the world will 'seek Him out' and that
"His abode will be glorious," probably a reference to
Bahá'u'lláh's sacred Shrine on the plain of Sharon.
     If one pronounces the initial letters of 'Boaz' (Beth) and
'Jachin' (Ayn) in Hebrew, the sound is 'Bahá'.' And, further, the
gematrical values of these two letters are 2 and 70, with the
mystic sum of 72. The archetypal value of 72 is Nine {6}, the
seal of Bahá'u'lláh. 

THE LITTLE BOOK:

And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right
foot upon the sea and his left foot on the earth. -Rev 10:2

      The little book is the Word of God as revealed by the
Manifestations. Although the words in the little book are
remarkably few, their implications cannot be written into any
number of tomes. Bahá'u'lláh wrote just such a little book, THE
HIDDEN WORDS, which He "clothed in the garment of brevity, as a
token of grace unto the righteous ..."
     Bahá'u'lláh rests his feet upon both the sea and the earth.
Obvious astrological idiom is seen here: the zodiac is divided
into two halves, 'dry land' and the 'waters below.' Bahá'u'lláh
straddles the Ages, looking down from the heavens with his right
foot on the 'waters below' and His left foot on the 'dry land' of
the zodiac.
     The symbols have other meanings: the sea is chaotic, filled
with uncertainty and danger; dry land is relatively stable, more
certain and secure. More will be said about these symbols in
later chapters. 

THE LION OF JUDAH ROARS:

3 And cried with a loud voice, as a lion roareth: and when he had
cried, seven thunders uttered their voices, And when the seven
thunders had uttered their voices, I was about to write: and I
heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things
which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not. -Rev 10:3-4

[REB: 3 "... when he shouted, the seven thunders spoke." 

      Bahá'u'lláh, as the Pillar of Lion/Judah during the Age of
Leo-Aquarius, roars with the thunderous voices of the
Manifestations of the Seven Churches of Asia. Again, the words
are remarkably few in number, and John proceeds to write them
down. However, he is warned not to do so, since the Words must
remain Hidden until the Piscean Age is completed. 

A SWORN OATH:

And the angel which I saw upon the sea and upon the earth lifted
up his hand to heaven, 6 And sware by him that liveth for ever
and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are,
and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and
the things which are therein, that there should be time no
longer: 7 But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when
he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God shall be finished, as
he hath declared to his servants and prophets. -Rev 10:5-7

[REB: 6-7 .... "There shall be no more delay; when the time comes
for the seventh angel to sound his trumpet, the hidden purpose of
God will have been fulfilled, as he promised to his servants the
prophets."]

      There was a delay of more than 18 centuries following
Jesus' prophecy of the Kingdom, and more than 12 centuries
following the prophecy by Muhammad. Now, with the blast of the
7th trumpet, the delays will have been finished, the purpose of
Creation will be revealed, and the promised Kingdom will become a
reality.

JOHN 'SWALLOWS' THE LITTLE BOOK:

And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and
said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of
the angel which standeth upon the sea and the earth.  And I went
unto the angel, and he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up, and
it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth
sweet as honey.  And I took the little book out of the angel's
hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and
as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter. -Rev 10:8-10

     John is commanded to 'swallow,' that is, to accept the
commands and precepts of the Prophets. He discovers that their
beautiful words are easy to say, but difficult to actually live
by.

JOHN IS COMMANDED TO PROPHESY A SECOND TIME:

And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many
peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings. -Rev 10:11

     John has just prophesied to Christendom, now he must
prophesy once again, this time to Islamdom.    
                   
                   CHAPTER 11- THE COURSE OF ISLAMDOM


SYNOPSIS:

     This and the following two chapters describe events
meaningful to Islamdom. 
     The chapter opens with a warning to John that Jerusalem will
be under the dominion of Gentiles until the year 1260 of the
Muslim lunar calendar. But during that time, the spiritual Holy
of Holies will be left intact, and that the perfections of the
souls within that spiritual temple should be measured with a
spiritual measure.
     God, through Bahá'u'lláh, tells John that He will confer the
power of prophecy to His two Witnesses, Muhammad and 'Ali, for
all those 1260 lunar years. They will have the same Prophethood
as Moses and Aaron.
     After they have completed their work, the loathsome House of
Umayyah will ascend from the pit of theological error and destroy
all the good works that Muhammad and 'Ali will have accomplished.
Nevertheless, the outward body of observances of Islam will be
kept alive, even though the living spirit will have left the
Faith.
     But in the year 1260 of the Muslim calendar, the Religion of
God will be 'resurrected,' and Muhammad and 'Ali will be re-
Manifested in the Persons of the Bab and his leading disciple,
Quddus. Great fear and frenzied excitement will seize the Muslim
world. Both the Bab and Quddus will be martyred and ascend to
heaven in 'clouds of glory' in the presence of their enemies.
     After their Ascension, and during the Dispensation of the
Bab, a great earthquake will shake Shiraz, the Bab's birthplace.
7-thousand people will be killed. 
     The Bab's Advent marks the second Woe. The third Woe, the
Advent of Bahá'u'lláh, will follow very shortly after the second. 
     True to the promise of the angel of Bahá'u'lláh in Chapter
10, the blast of the seventh heralding angel announces the
Kingdom of God on  earth. The heavenly Temple is opened, and John
sees that the Ark of the Covenant still exists in the spiritual
realm. 
     The Covenant will be broken once again.


MEASURING THE TEMPLE OF GOD:
     
And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel
stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the
altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is
without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given
unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot
forty and two months. -Rev 11:1-2

      The mighty angel of Chapter 10 is still speaking to
John.{1} As explained previously, the Arabic name of the mighty
angel is 'Bahá'u'lláh,' which translates into English as 'The
Glory of God.' On earth He is also called the 'King of Glory,'
and in the angelic realm of Daniel and the Apocalypse, He is
sometimes called 'Michael.'{11}
      The "reed" ("cane" in REB) is the rod of the Divine
Shepherd, used to guide the weak. John is instructed to use it as
a cubit to discover the conditions, perfections, behavior and
attributes of those who are to dwell inside the Holy of Holies.
But he is told that the court of the temple, that is, the
physical temple, is to be overrun by the Gentiles for 42
"months."
     We recall that a 'prophetic month' equals 30 calendar years.
Thus 42 'months' are 1260 calendar years. Since the prophecy
concerns Islamdom, and since the lunar calendar is to be used in
that realm, the period of time is to be 1260 lunar years as
measured in the Muslim calendar. 1260 AH {2} is identical to 1844
CE, the date of the Declaration of the Bab and the second Woe.
The Bab declared the end of the Dispensation of Muhammad.
      John is being told that the holy city Jerusalem and the
material Holy of Holies is to be given to the Gentiles for the
duration of the Dispensation of Muhammad, but that the spiritual
Holy of Holies is to be left inviolate.
      When Jerusalem was taken by the great Caliph Umar in 637
CE, the Christian Bishop Sophronius placed a condition upon the
bloodless surrender of Jerusalem- that the Jews must be strictly
excluded from the Holy Land. In principle, Umar agreed to this
condition, but permitted about 70 Jewish families to remain as
residents. In the year 1260 AH, the Edict of Toleration was
promulgated by the Ottoman Turks, allowing the Jews to legally
reenter the Holy Land, thereby ending the 'time of the Gentiles.'
Throughout this period the spiritual Holy of Holies, that is, the
Law of God, was respected and left inviolate.
     On a more mundane level, Umar erected a shrine (the Dome of
the Rock) over the Rock Moriah, the physical location of the
Holy of Holies, for the exclusive use of Muslim worshippers.
Also, he left the inside of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre to
Christian worship, while the outer court of the church was given
to Muslim worship.

THE TWO WITNESSES: 

And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall
prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in
sackcloth. 4 These are the two olive trees, and the two
candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.  And if any
man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and
devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must
in this manner be killed. -Rev 11:3-5

[REB: 4 "They are the two olive trees and the two lamps that
stand in the presence of the Lord of the earth.] 

     God will confer the power of prophecy to His two Witnesses,
Muhammad and 'Ali, for 1260 lunar years, terminating at the year
1844 CE. Their teachings will not seem to be new: Muhammad's
spiritual laws (brotherly love, humility, reverence, justice,
etc.) will correspond to those of the Gospel, while most of the
laws relating to the material world (fasting, forms of worship
and prayer, marriage, divorce, etc.) will correspond to those of
the Pentateuch. Therefore, their teachings will be clothed in old
raiment (sackcloth). 
     Muhammad and 'Ali are to be God's sources of spiritual
sustenance and light, like olive oil that is both a food and a
fuel for lamps. If anyone shall try to harm His two Witnesses,
fiery words of the Lord will issue from their mouths and their
enemies will be put to flight. 
     In this chapter we experience the influence of Gemini, The
Twins, one of the astrological pillars of the square earth during
the Age of Pisces. 

THEIR POWERS: 

These have the power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days
of their prophecy: and have the power over waters to turn them to
blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they
will. -Rev 11:6

     Muhammad will have the same Prophethood as Moses, while 'Ali
will be delegated the same power as Aaron {3}. Thus, jointly,
they will have the power to cut off the rain of heavenly bounty
{4}; to turn the waters of spiritual life into death blood {5};
and to smite the world with various plagues as often as they will
{6}.

THE BEAST FROM THE BOTTOMLESS PIT:

7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast
that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against
them, and kill them. -Rev 11:7

[REB: 7 "... will wage war on them and will overcome and kill
them.] 

     We have already had a portent of these events when we
discovered some of the nefarious tactics of the Umayyah in
Chapter 9. Muhammad had prophesied: 

"We will bring to them a beast from the earth. It will speak to
them, for mankind would not be convinced of our signs." -Qur'an
27:82

     After Muhammad and 'Ali will have performed all that which
God has commanded them to do, the House of Umayyah will ascend
out of the pit of error, determined to destroy the Revelation of
Muhammad and the Reality of 'Ali. They will succeed in their
designs and gain the victory, so that the virtues and perfections
diffused by the power of these two Witnesses shall be entirely
dispelled.

THE 'BODIES' OF THE TWO WITNESSES LIE 'DEAD':

8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great
city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our
Lord was crucified.  And they of the people and kindreds and
tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and a
half and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves. 
And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and
make merry, and shall send gifts to one another: because these
two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth. -Rev 11:8-10

[REB: 8 "Their bodies will lie in the street of the great city,
whose name in prophetic language is Sodom, or Egypt, ...]

     A 'prophetic day' is also a 'time,' and a 'time' is 360
calendar years. Therefore 3 1/2 "days" are 1260 calendar years.   
     The Religion of God will lie as a dead body without spirit
in the region of the Middle East that is under the control of the
Umayyah. The region will become the land of Sodom (sin) and Egypt
(materialism). The nations, tribes, and peoples of Islamdom will
make a spectacle of the Religion of God, clinging to the outward
appearances by not allowing the "body" of observances to be
destroyed. This they will do for 1260 lunar years, the entire
Dispensation of Muhammad. The other peoples of the earth,
including the branches of Christendom, will rejoice to see the
corruption of morals that will infect the peoples of Islamdom;
they will assist each other (give gifts) in their struggles with
Islamdom, because the powerful utterances of Muhammad and 'Ali
had been a torment to them.

THEIR 'REVIVAL':

And after three days and a half the Spirit of life from God
entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear
fell upon them which saw them. -Rev 11:11

     In the year 1260 AH, the Divine teachings, heavenly virtues,
perfections, and spiritual bounties of Muhammad and 'Ali will be
renewed by the appearance of the Bab and Quddus. Great fear will
seize the populace.
     The relationship between the Bab and His young Apostle,
Quddus, was the same as that between Muhammad and 'Ali, or Moses
and Aaron. Although the Bab had 18 Apostles, called 'Letters of
the Living,' Quddus was the Bab's most devoted Apostle and next
in spiritual rank beneath the Bab. The Religion of God was
renewed by the Bab with the help of Quddus and His other Apostles
during a six-year ministry from May 23, 1844 until His public
Martyrdom at midday, July 9, 1850. His public declaration that He
was the One foretold by numerous prophecies of Islam and other
Faiths, and that He was the Forerunner of the Promised One of All
Ages (Bahá'u'lláh) caused great fear among the Muslims, leading
to armed attacks, confiscation of property, torture, and
martyrdom of tens of thousands of His devotees.

THEY ASCEND 'IN A CLOUD':

And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come
up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their
enemies beheld them. -Rev 11:12

     The voice from the invisible heaven called the Bab and
Quddus to ascend in a 'cloud of glory.' The Bab was publicly
martyred by a regimental firing squad on July 9, 1850. The smoke
from the 750 fire arms was so dense that it blotted out the light
of the sun at noontime. (Miraculously, the first regiment of
Christian soldiers were unable to hit their mark, fulfilling the
Bab's own prophecy that no one would be able to take His life
until His full testimony had been completed.)     After being
tortured to death, the body of Quddus was destroyed by fire.
Multitudes of enemies witnessed their fates, many testifying to
their greatness and perfection.

A GREAT EARTHQUAKE:

And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth
part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men
seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory
to the God of heaven. -Rev 11:13
     Indeed, there were two earthquakes during the "Hour" of the
Bab: the first occurred the day after His Martyrdom and shook
Istanbul, the seat of the caliphate. The earthquake of verse 13
destroyed much of Shiraz, the birthplace of the Bab. This second
earthquake occurred about one year prior to the Advent of
Bahá'u'lláh.


THE SECOND WOE IS PAST:

The second woe is past, and, behold, the third woe cometh
quickly. -Rev 11:14

     The Hour of the Bab is past. The Hour of Bahá'u'lláh will
follow very shortly.
     Again we see the influence of Gemini in the Twin
Manifestation, the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh. The Advent of Bahá'u'lláh
occurred in the year Nine of the Babi Dispensation. Shortly after
Bahá'u'lláh received His Revelation, some close confidants were
informed of the Great Announcement. The Babi Dispensation lasted
another ten years, after which Bahá'u'lláh made a public
Declaration of His mission in the Garden of Paradise, in the
proximity of ancient Babylon and modern Baghdad.
     There is great mystery here. For the first time in recorded
history, the Dispensations of two Manifestations overlapped in
mundane time. Also astonishing is the very short period between
the Ascension of the first Twin and the Advent of the second
Twin. 
     Two mystic numbers are expressed in the Twinship: Nine and
Nineteen. Besides Nine being the year of His Advent, Nine is the
gematrical value of the word 'Bahá',' and is the seal of
Bahá'u'lláh.
     The number Nineteen is especially associated with the Bab,
since He and His Apostles numbered 19, and His Dispensation
lasted 19 years. Nineteen is also the 'mystery of the Qur'an.'
Through modern, computer-aided research, it has been discovered
that the Qur'an conceals the number 19 in such recondite
abundance, that the Divine inspiration of the Qur'an can hardly
be doubted.    

THE SEVENTH TRUMPET BLAST:

15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in
heaven, saying, the kingdoms of this world are become kingdoms of
our Lord, and of his Christ, and he shall reign for ever and
ever. -Rev 11:15

[REB: 15 .... 'Sovereignty over the world has passed to our Lord
and his Christ, and he shall reign for ever.']

     During the Age of Pisces, the world was under the dominion
of venomous forces represented by the Four Horses of the
Apocalypse: perversion of the Religion of God, warmongering,
economic injustice, and un-Godliness. Now, in the Age of
Leo-Aquarius, the sovereignty will pass to God the Father and His
Anointed One. Unlike former prophetic Cycles, the Cycle initiated
by Bahá'u'lláh will encompass all the Ages of the zodiac. {12}
     The word 'Christ' is possibly the least understood word in
the lexicon. 'Christos' is the Greek equivalent of 'Messiah,' (
Heb. 'Mashgiah') meaning, literally, 'Anointed.' Originally, the
term meant simply a king, and was a Jewish regal title. In the
messianic period at the close of the Age of Aries, it gradually
became identified with the King of the Age of Redemption, and was
applied to Jesus of Nazareth by the early Christians.{7}
     Of course we are interested in the term as used in the
Apocalypse, realizing that God can 'anoint' whomsoever He
chooses. A powerful clue is given in Isaiah {8}, where the Lord
'anoints' king Cyrus of Persia, "before whom doors will be opened
and no gates barred." (REB) Like David, Cyrus had the power to
open a new door of history, and it is in this sense that the term
'Christ' is correctly applied to Jesus and to all of the Lord's
'Anointed.' The 'Return of Christ' means the 'return' of the
Perfect Holy Mirror, the One who will reflect the attributes of
God and thereby renew the Ages.
      The Bab opened a new door of history and is, therefore, a
'Christ.' But the title is applicable to each and every
Manifestation of God, and is applicable to Bahá'u'lláh as well.
We find Bahá'u'lláh instructing: "Make this known unto them [the
servants of God], that nothing whatsoever may shut them out from
Thy Beauty, in these days whereon the Christ exclaimeth: 'All
dominion is thine O Thou Begetter of the Spirit [Jesus]'...' -BH
{9}

GOD IS PRAISED:

And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their
seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God,  Saying, We
give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and
art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and
hast reigned.  And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come,
and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that
thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets and to
the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and
shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth. -Rev 11:16-18

     With the seventh trumpet blast, the Lord of the Age will
assume power in the name of God. The twice-twelve Elders of the
Age of Leo-Aquarius, who are seated around the throne of
Bahá'u'lláh, prostrate themselves before Him and give thanks to
God, Who is eternal, and never dies, in spite of His seeming
death in times of great personal distress and corruption of the
world of man. Now, the Lord will assume power over the earth, and
reward each man and woman according to that which they truly
deserve. The nations and peoples of the world who oppose
Bahá'u'lláh will be angry, because God's teachings do not agree
with what they expected through their own idle fancies and vain
imaginings. All who fail to follow His precepts and commands will
be deprived of everlasting bounty, and veiled from the light of
the Sun of Reality. The righteous will be distinguished by
endless bounty, making them shine on the horizon of eternal
honor. The spiritually dead will be deprived, making manifest the
blindness of the blind, and the ignorance of the people of error. 

GOD'S SANCTUARY IS OPENED:

19 And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen
in the temple the ark of his testament: and there were
lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and
great hail. -Rev 11:19

[REB: 19 God's sanctuary in heaven was opened, and within his
sanctuary was seen the ark of his covenant. ...]

     John sees that the true sanctuary of God is in heaven, not
on the Rock Moriah, and that the spiritual Ark of the Covenant
still resides there, as it always has. When the Temple of God in
heaven is opened, the Divine teachings will be diffused in all
directions. The Book of His Testament and the Epistle of the
Covenant will be reestablished. There will be a great storm of
the spirit. There will flash the lightnings of the anger and
wrath of God. The thunder of the violation of the Covenant will
resound, and an earthquake of doubts will shake the world of man.
A hail of torments will beat upon the violators of the Covenant,
and even those who professed belief will fall into trials and
temptations.
     The physical Temple was destroyed by Titus in 70 CE. The
cherished Ark of the Covenant had mysteriously disappeared many
centuries earlier, and its fate is not known to this day. {10}
     The Covenant was again violated by the 'archbreaker' Mirza
Muhammad-'Ali, a half-brother of 'Abdu'l-Bahá. 
                   
                   CHAPTER 12- THE TRAVAIL OF THE WORD


SYNOPSIS:

      This chapter reveals the travail of the Law of God during
the Dispensation of Muhammad. {1}
     The constellation Virgo (the Virgin) is seen in the heavens.
Besides representing the parallel cults of Mary and Fatima during
the Age of Pisces-Virgo, she represents the Law of God during the
Dispensation of Muhammad.
     John also sees the constellation Draco (the Dragon), blood-
colored to symbolize war. It is identified as the illegitimate
caliphate initiated by the House of Umayyah that conquers 7-
dominions and has 10 un-repeated names, destroys one-third of the
saintly lineage of Muhammad, and keeps a watchful eye to prevent
the rebirth of the true Law of God. 
     Nevertheless, the Law delivers a child, the Twelfth Imam,
who disappears mysteriously without a trace. The Twelfth Imam is
destined to 're-appear' as the Bab in the year 1260 AH.
     In the meantime, the Law will find refuge in the remote
wilderness areas of Arabia where she is to be kept alive and well
until the Advent of the Bab.
     John then witnesses a great spiritual 'war' in the heavens,
symbolically represented by astrological constellations such as
Leviathan, Hercules, Leo and Scorpio. Michael, the angel
representing, Bahá'u'lláh, the Lion of Judah, wins in the
conflict over the evil forces of the Dragon, [who is actually
under the control of Scorpio, the Serpent of Genesis]. Again, the
significance of this triumph is recounted- since it foretells the
Kingdom of God on earth.
     The House of Umayyah and their successors in the Muslim
world, seeing that they have lost the spiritual war, persecute
the remaining devotees of the true Law. Scorpio, no longer a
dominant force in the heavens, is replaced by the astrological
sign Flying Eagle. The "great Eagle" 'assists' the Law of God by
'flying her' into the wilderness for her safety during the 1260
'days' until her child, the Twelfth Imam can reenter the world as
the Bab. The influence of the great Eagle is experienced on
earthly plane as Muhammad; his two wings are 'Ali and Fatima. 


THE WOMAN IN THE SUN:

And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with
the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown
of twelve stars:  And she being with child cried, travailing in
birth, and pained to be delivered. -Rev 12:1-2

     Here we see the constellation Virgo, one of the pillars of
the square earth during the Age of Pisces. In Christendom, Virgo
was manifested as the cult of Mary, the mother of Jesus. In
Islamdom, Virgo was manifested as the cult of Fatima, the
daughter of Muhammad and the wife of 'Ali. In this chapter, Virgo
has yet another meaning- the Law of God. She is clothed in the
sun, a symbol of Persia, and has the moon, a symbol of Turkey,
beneath her feet. The twelve stars are the Twelve Holy Imams of
Islam.
     According to Shi'ah belief, the Twelve Imams were the
rightful spiritual leaders of Islamdom, their progenitors being
'Ali and Fatima. The first eleven Imams are known to have been
martyred, but the Twelfth Imam mysteriously disappeared while
still a child in the year 260 AH. 
     Various prophecies portended that the Twelfth Imam would
'return' in the year 1260 AH (= 1844 CE). In fulfillment of these
prophecies, the youthful Bab appeared in that year, claiming to
be the Return of the Twelfth Imam. Thus, the "child" in verse 2
is both the Twelfth Imam and his 're-appearance' in the human
temple of the Bab.

THE RED DRAGON IN HEAVEN:

3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great
red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns
upon his heads.  And his tail drew the third part of the stars of
heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood
before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour
her child as soon as it was born. -Rev 12:3-4

     Another stellar constellation, the Dragon (Draco) is
introduced. The Dragon is located near the north celestial pole.
In verse 3, the Dragon has the color of war, and is identifiable
as the House of Umayyah through his descriptors:
     A 'head' is that on which a crown is placed, that is, a
dominion. The Umayyah ruled 7 dominions: 1. the Roman-Byzantine
dominion around Damascus (Palestine and part of Syria); 2. the
dominion of Sassanid Persia (Iran, Mesopotamia, and part of
Syria); 3. the dominion of Egypt; 4. the dominion of Africa
(Tunis, Morocco and Algeria); 5. the dominion of Arabia; 6. the
dominion of Andalusia (Spain); and 7. the dominion of
Turkestan-Transoxania (Sogdiana).
     A 'horn' is a 'handle,' that is, a name. The Umayyah had 15
commanders and chiefs, but only ten UN-REPEATED names. These
names were 1. Abu-Sufyan, 2. Mu'awiya, 3. Yazid, 4. Marwan, 5.
'Abd al-Malik, 6. al-Walid, 7. Sulayman, 8. Umar (II), 9. Hisham,
and 10. Ibrahim. 
     The "tail of the dragon" is the last of the Umayyad chiefs,
Marwan II, who destroyed one-third of the 'heavenly stars'
(saintly lineage) of Muhammad. The Umayyah were ever watchful to
prevent the recurrence of the Law of God.


THE BIRTH OF THE MAN CHILD:

And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations
with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to
his throne.  And the woman fled unto the wilderness, where she
hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a
thousand two hundred and threescore days. -Rev 12:5-6

     The Law of God is manifested as the Twelfth Imam, who is
"caught up unto God" beyond the reach of the caliphate. The Bab,
the 'Return of the Twelfth Imam', is destined to have power over
all nations, ruling them with a "rod of iron", just as Muhammad
had done. The Law of God 'flees' into the vast desert wilderness
of Hijaz and the Arabian peninsula, where she will be kept alive
and safe until 1260 AH, the date of the Return.

THE WAR IN HEAVEN:

7 And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought
against the dragon; and the dragon fought with his angels, 8 and
prevailed not; neither was there place found anymore in heaven. 
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the
Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast
out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. -Rev
12:7-9

[REB: 7-8 ".... The dragon with his angels fought back, but was
too weak, and they lost their place in heaven."]

     The 'war in heaven' involves several constellations, among
them: The Water Serpent or Leviathan (Hydra), Hercules (the
Kneeler), and the Man With the Serpent (Ophiucus-Serpens).    
Leviathan is adjacent to the Lion (Leo) in the heavens, while
Hercules kneels with his club raised over the head of the Dragon.
Ophiucus is in mortal combat with the Serpent, which is adjacent
to the Scorpion. Verse 7 equates the Dragon, the Serpent, the
Devil and Satan as the same evil force in different guises,
represented by the Scorpion, the "horned snake on the path" {2}.
Michael, the "Great Captain" {3}, commands the righteous forces
in the epic conflict, and is represented by the Lion. 
     The Precession of the Equinoxes is accompanied by another
phenomenon: the Precession of the Poles. When the Great Pyramid
of Giza was built at the dawn of the Age of Aries, Thuban in the
Dragon was the north star. Now, two astrological Ages later, the
Dragon has lost his eminence in the northern sky to be replaced
by the Little Bear. Also, the Scorpion is to be replaced by the
Flying Eagle in the new heaven.

THE VICTORY OF MICHAEL:

And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation,
and strength, and the Kingdom of our God, and the power of his
Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which
accused them before God day and night.  And they overcame him by
the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and
they loved not their lives unto the death. -Rev 12:10-11

     With the overthrow of the caliphate, the Anointed One,
Bahá'u'lláh, will be able to establish the Kingdom of God on
earth. The false accuser of the true Muslims (who are the
spiritual brothers of true Christians), will have been divested
of his title 'The Successor' to Muhammad. This will be made
possible by the Sacrifice of the Lamb Consummate, the Bab. He and
His devotees, numbering in the tens-of-thousands, will be put to
death; but even under the most horrible of tortures, they will
not waver in their testimony to the Cause of God.

"WOE" TO THE EARTH:

Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to
the inhabiters of the earth and the sea! for the devil is come
down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he
hath but a short time. -Rev 12:12

     Again we see the influence of Pisces in the metaphor of the
inhabitants of the 'sea' of humanity.

PERSECUTION OF THE HEAVENLY WOMAN:

And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he
persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child. 14 And to
the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might
fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished
for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the
serpent. -Rev 12:13-14

[REB: 14 ".... where she was to be looked after for three and a
half years, ...] 

      With the demise of the Scorpion, the Flying Eagle will
become the pillar of the new Age to come. Meanwhile, on the
earthly plane, the Law of God is given the assistance of 'Ali and
Fatima, the two 'wings' of the "great eagle" Muhammad. After the
diversion of the past several verses, it is again explained that
the Law of God will find a place of refuge in the vast desert
wilderness of Hijaz and Arabia until 3 1/2 'times.' Since a
'time' is 360 lunar years, the date in the Muslim lunar calendar
is 1260 AH.
     (The period of 3 1/2 times is also specified in Daniel.{4})

And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the
woman, that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood. 
And the earth helped the woman and the earth opened her mouth,
and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his
mouth. -Rev 12:15-16

     The House of Umayyah attempts to deceive the world with a
flood of false propaganda (tainted water) concerning the
Revelation of Muhammad. But the vast desert and its hardy peoples
prevent the Law of God from being destroyed.
     Astrologically, Virgo was on 'dry land' during the Age of
Aries. The Precession threatened to send her to the 'waters
below.' However, she safely became the pillar at the Fall equinox
during the Age of Pisces.

And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to war with the
remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have
the testimony of Jesus Christ. -Rev 12:17

     Failing to destroy the Law of God, the Umayyah attempt to
destroy those who believe in the true Message of the Prophet.     
A true Muslim follows God's commandments as revealed in the
Qur'an, and bears witness to the Reality of Jesus Christ. In Sura
5, God says:

And when I taught thee (Jesus) the Scripture, and Wisdom, and the
Law, and the Evangel: .... and thou didst heal the blind and the
leper, by my leave; and when, by my leave, thou didst bring forth
the dead; and when I withheld the children of Israel from thee,
when thou hadst come to them with clear tokens: and such of them
as believed not said, "This is nought but plain sorcery;"     And
when I revealed unto the Apostles, "Believe on me and my Sent One
(Jesus)," they said, "We believe; and bear thou witness that we
are Muslims." -Qur'an 5:110-111  [Rodwell translation]
                  
                  CHAPTER 13- THE RISE OF THE CALIPHATE


SYNOPSIS:

     This chapter describes the rise of the illegitimate
caliphate following the murder of 'Ali.
     John sees the House of Umayyah as a 'beast,' rising from the
abyss, and now crowned with a 'name of blasphemy.' He also sees
that the empire created by the Umayyah resembles past empires in
the region in various ways.
     John learns that the House of Umayyah is destined to be
nearly destroyed, leaving only one dominion, Spain, under their
reign. [Curiously, the Cordoban caliphate, to be re-constituted
under their House in Spain, will also have ten un-repeated names
of chiefs.] The oecumene is amazed at their great military
prowess that seems to come from Satan himself. Their House will
be noted for their ungodliness, but the dynasties they spawn by
their illegitimate usurpation of the caliphate will continue to
have political power for the entire duration of Muhammad's
Dispensation, ending in the year 1260 AH (1844 CE).  
     All the oecumene, excepting only those people who are truly
righteous, will admire the House of Umayyah. 
     Nevertheless, the House of Umayyah will be overthrown by yet
another 'beast,' the House of 'Abbas. The new regime will be
every bit as powerful as its predecessor. It will govern the
empire, except for Spain, with such great severity that the
oecumene will prefer the neo-Umayyad dynasty in Spain over the
'Abbasids. The 'Abbasid period will exhibit great technical and
scientific skills.{1} The House of 'Abbas will resemble its
predecessor in many ways, as if it were the mirror image of the
House of Umayyah.
     The financial strength of the House of 'Abbas will rest upon
the hypocritical collection of two taxes imposed on non-Muslims,
the poll and business taxes.
     The reader is invited to guess the name of blasphemy. If he
succeeds in this pastime, he will discover that the literal value
of the name is 666. The solution to the riddle is 'The Caliph.'


THE FIRST BEAST WITH THE 'NAME OF BLASPHEMY':

1 And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up
out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his
horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. -Rev
13:1

[NIV: 1 And the dragon stood on the shore of the sea ...]

     The Dragon, aka Satan the Deceiver, waits near the sea of
humanity during the Age of Pisces, ready to give his power to the
House of Umayyah, the beast that will control seven dominions and
will have ten un-repeated names. The Umayyah will gain control of
the caliphate and will bear a name of blasphemy, 'The Caliph.' 
The name means 'The Successor to Muhammad,' and was a sacred
title. This supreme office combined both the temporal and
spiritual authority in early Islamdom. To assume the title
illegitimately was and is an act of blasphemy.

THE BEAST DESCRIBED:

And the beast which I saw was like a leopard, and his feet were
as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and
the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
-Rev 13:2

     The terms leopard, bear and lion refer to a prophecy in
Daniel.{2} In Daniel's prophecy, the leopard represents the
empire of Alexander the Great; the bear represents the empire of
Media-Persia; the lion represents the empire of Chaldea
(neo-Babylonia.)
     The Umayyad empire resembled Alexander's in its extent,
prosperity, and the leopard-like alacrity of its conquests.
However, its true strength lay in its control of Media-Persia,
the reticent bear. In its roaring boasts, it resembled a lion
{3}, and had its capital within the confines of old Chaldea.

THE WOUNDED HEAD THAT HEALED:

And I saw one of its heads as it were wounded to death; and his
deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the
beast. -Rev 13:3

     The 'accursed Umayyah' were overthrown by the 'Abbasids in
749 CE. The destruction of the Umayyah seemed total, but one of
the Umayyah, 'Abd Al-Rahman, known as the 'Falcon of the
Quraysh,' managed to escape to Andalusia (Spain), where he set up
a neo-Umayyad dynasty, the Cordoban Caliphate, that lasted for
another three centuries. Thus Andalusia was the wounded head that
healed.
     The ten horns were also healed. The Cordoban Caliphate came
to an end in 1031 after it had spawned 18 neo-Umayyad Caliphs.
Yet, again, it had only 10 un-repeated names: 1. Abd Al-Rahman,
2. Hisham, 3. Hakam, 4. Muhammad, 5. Munzir, 6. Abdullah, 7.
Hijib Al-Mansur, 8. 'Abdu'l-Malik, 9. Al-Mahdi, and 10. Sulayman. 

THE END DATE OF BEASTLY POWER:


And they worshipped the dragon which gave power to the beast: and
they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast?
Who is able to make war with him?  And there was given unto him a
mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given
unto him to continue forty and two months. -Rev 13:4-5

     A 'prophetic month' is 30 years. Therefore forty-two
'months' is 1260 years.
     The oecumene will admire the caliphate, whose power seems to
rest upon an alliance with the Devil. The military prowess of the
caliphate will be leopard-like, resembling that of Alexander the
Great. Although the office of the caliphate will be occupied by
several dynasties, the fraud initiated by the Umayyah will
continue for the entire Dispensation of Muhammad, until 1260 AH.
     The impression made by the caliphate upon the rest of the
world was profound and sometimes baleful. Dark Age Christendom
initiated a series of countermeasures in an attempt to overtake
the technology and military power of Islamdom. In the shadowy
recesses of the council chambers of that era, it is difficult to
see what actually transpired, but the elimination of the 'human
spirit' as a third part of Man has already been alluded to. Some
historians see an abrupt shift away from spirituality in the West
and towards a more materialistic society. Other historians
discern the seeds of material progress in the 9th century that
would flower in the 11th. 

And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme
his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.  And
it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to
overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and
tongues, and nations.  And all that dwell upon the earth shall
worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of
the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. -Rev 13:6-8

     The Umayyah were noted for their hypocrisy, economic and
social injustice, and their luxurious lives dedicated to the
pleasures of the flesh. They suppressed the descendants of
Muhammad and the Holy Imams, and dominated a vast array of
peoples covering most of the oecumene. Their military power was
supreme.
     The "Lamb" represents the principle of Sacrifice that has
existed since the beginning of time, necessary for the renewal of
the Ages and the manifestation of a higher reality. Regardless of
which CONSTELLATION appears at the Spring equinox, it is said
that Spring always appears under the SIGN of Aries. Thus,
symbolically, the Lamb has always been 'slain' to permit a new
Age to commence. 
     In the Bahá'í Dispensation, the names in the Book of Life
are written by the Center of the Covenant, 'Abdu'l-Bahá, the
'Most Great Branch' from the 'pre-existent root.' {4} 


A LAW OF DIVINE RETRIBUTION: 

If any man have an ear, let him hear. 10 He that leadeth into
captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword
must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and faith of
the saints. -Rev 13:9-10

[REB: 10  .... This calls for the endurance and faithfulness of
God's people.] 

     John learns the Law of Divine Retribution that will destroy
the beast. The Umayyah continued to decay in spirituality and
power, eventually experiencing the same fate that they had meted
out to others. Except for 'Abd Al-Rahman, the Umayyah were hunted
down and executed. Even the corpses of their dead Caliphs, except
for the pious Umar II, were exhumed and desecrated. 

THE SECOND BEAST:

And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had
two horns like a lamb, and he spoke as a dragon.  And he
exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and
causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the
first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. -Rev 13:11-12

     The second beast is the House of 'Abbas. It will come to
power on the ruins (earth) of the first beast, and will have two
names (horns) of power: 'The Caliph' and 'The Sultan.' {5} It,
too, will utter preposterous lies and blasphemies. By comparison,
the revived neo-Umayyad dynasty in Spain will seem far less
aggressive and more palatable to Christendom; Western
civilization will gain much from its relations with Muslim Spain.
THE IMAGE OF THE BEAST:

And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from
heaven on earth in the sight of men,  and deceiveth them that
dwell on the earth by means of those miracles which he had power
to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on
earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the
wound by the sword, and did live. -Rev 13:13-14

     At its apex, the 'Abbasids exercised all the power of the
Umayyah, and revived the dying empire that had been mortally
wounded and yet lived on in Spain. The 'Abbasid period,
commemorated in the fable 'The Arabian Nights,' is noteworthy for
its advanced science and technology. Very early they learned the
use of gunpowder and Greek fire, employing spectacular devices in
warfare such as burning globes and javelins that were propelled
over long distances.
     The 'image' which the 'Abbasids created was their imitation
of the Umayyah. Not only did they imitate them in their outward
trappings and lifestyle, their history imitated the Umayyah as
well. Both came to power by deception and fraud. Both occupied
the caliphate for about a century, and both kept in power through
terror and intrigue. Both began their careers enjoying a vast
empire, yet each ended up in control of a single domain.{6}
     Curiously, both the neo-Umayyad and 'Abbasid Caliphs
continued the pattern of 10 un-repeated names. From their
usurpation of power in 750 until their loss of power to the Turks
in 861, the 'Abbasid Caliphs bore ten names: 1. As-Saffa, 2.
Al-Mansur, 3. Al-Mahdi, 4. Al-Hadi, 5. Ar-Rashid, 6. Al-Amin, 7.
Al-Ma'mun, 8. Al-Mu'tasim, 9. Al-Wathiq, and 10. Al-Mutawakkil.  
      Also, the first Turkish dynasty, the Seljuks, who seized
the caliphate from the 'Abbasids in 861, might be said to have
produced a line of potentates with 10 un-repeated names, although
the last years of their sovereignty were confused by pretenders
to the office. The mainstream Seljuk Caliphs bore the following
names: 1. Malik, 2. Toghrul, 3. Alp, 4. Barkiyaroq, 5. Mahommed,
6. Sinjar, 7. Mahmud, 8. Masud, 9. Sulayman, and 10. Arslan. 
     With the fall of the Seljuks, the pattern of ten horns seems
to have been broken. After the fall of the 'Abbasids and before
the Turks imposed their rule on North Africa, there was a power
vacuum that permitted the independent and brilliant Fatimid
Caliphate to flourish from 909 until 1171. This caliphate,
centered at Cairo, claimed a line of descent from the House of
'Ali through the Sixth Imam. The Fatimids fared better: they
begot 14 Caliphs with 14 un-repeated names. Nor did the final
Turkish dynasty, the Ottoman, exhibit the ten horn pattern. From
1230 until the destruction of the caliphate in 1924, the Ottomans
begot 32 Caliphs, again with 14 un-repeated names.

And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that
the image of the beast should both speak, and cause as many as
would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. -Rev
13:15

     The second beast, the House of 'Abbas, was able to revive
the image of the first beast, the House of Umayyah, so that it
seemed to be alive again. The 'Abbasids enforced their new regime
with great severity, ruthlessly murdering even those who had
helped them to gain power. 

THE TWO STIGMATA:

And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and
bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their
foreheads: 17 And that no man might buy or sell, save that he had
the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. -
Rev 13:16-17

[REB: 17 and no man was allowed to buy or sell unless he bore
this beast's mark, either name or number.]

     The 'marks' or stigmata were two taxes imposed on
non-Muslims. The 'kharaj' was a business and land tax imposed on
the working ('right') hand; the 'jizya' was a poll tax imposed on
the 'forehead.' Trading was forbidden by non-Muslims unless they
had paid either the poll tax (assessed by the 'name' of their
Faith) or the business tax (assessed by the 'number' of their
business). Originally, the modest kharaj and jizya were intended
as benign symbols of religious tolerance and as gentle
encouragement to convert to Islam. Under the Umayyad and 'Abbasid
Caliphs, the kharaj and jizya were radically transformed into
sources of great personal wealth and were used as capital for
imperial expansion. Many non-Muslims fled the realm of the beast
to avoid paying these taxes.

A TEST OF INTELLECTUAL SKILL:

18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the
number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his
number is Six hundred threescore and six. -Rev 13:18

[REB: 18 (This calls for skill; let anyone who has intelligence
work out the number of the beast, for the number represents a
man's name, and the numerical value of its letters is six hundred
and sixty-six.)

     The reader of the Apocalypse is challenged to work out the
gematrical value of the 'name of the beast.' From verse 1, we
understand that it is a title, since it rests upon "seven heads."
Also, the title must be sacred, since its expropriation by the
beast was an act of blasphemy. And, since the text of the
Apocalypse is in Koine Greek, the answer should be in Koine.     
     From the various clues in this and other chapters of the
Apocalypse, we guess that the solution is probably 'The Caliph.'
We test this conjecture by transliterating the Arabic name into
Koine to determine whether its gematrical value is, indeed, 666. 
     We must define certain transcriptions for the purpose of
presenting the result in English letters:


[ARABIC]  [KOINE]  [GEMATRICAL VALUE]  [TRANSCRIPTION]

[Al (definite article)]  [' + Omicron]  [70]  ['O]
[Kef]  [Kappa (soft)]  [20]  [K]
[alif]  [alpha]  [1]  [a]
[lam]  [double lambda (hard)]  [60]  [ll]
[ye]  [epsilon + iota (diphthong)]  [15]  [ei]
[fe]  [phi]  [500]  [ph]

      Transcribed:  The Caliph  =  'O Kalleiph
      Gematrical value:  70 + 20 + 1 + 60 + 15 + 500 = 666

     There are several other concurrences that lend credence to
this solution. A few will be noted here, while some others will
be noted where appropriate.
     
     a. The date of the usurpation of the caliphate by the House
of Umayyah was 661 CE. Most biblical scholars, in agreement with
the Gospel of Matthew, place the Birth of Jesus sometime prior to
the death of Herod the Great who died in the year 4-5 BCE.
Placing the 'true' historical date of His Birth at about 5 BCE,
and accounting for the missing zeroth year in BOTH the Christian
and common calendars, {7} places the origin of the illegitimate
caliphate at about 666 'ANNO DOMINI.'
     
     b. The Arabic equivalent of the Anglo-Saxon name 'God' is
''Allah.'  In the Arabic gematria, ''Allah' has the value 66. The
number '6' is deemed to be the 'number of mediation' by
numerologists. Thus '666' has as one of its meanings, 'The
Mediator to 'Allah.'  The illegitimate caliphate blasphemously
claimed that role to be their own.

     c. In itself, the number '666' suggests 'successorship,'
since 600 is the decadal successor of 60, and 60 is the decadal
successor of 6. 

     d. Attempts to transliterate the Greek number 666 into
Arabic produce words meaning 'the spy' or 'the sensual.'  Both
appellations are descriptive of the Houses of Umayyah and 'Abbas.

     Before leaving the subject, there is one more possible clue,
derived from numerology, that might be apparent in the number
666.  Besides being the 'number of mediation,' 6 is also called
the 'number of beauty.' The Greek word for 'beauty' is 'kallos.'
Thus, if one makes this connection, the first four letters are
common to the words 'kallos' and 'kalleiph.'
                   
                   CHAPTER 14- THE WORLD-STAGE IS SET


SYNOPSIS:

     Chapter 14 sets the world stage for the Advent of 
Bahá'u'lláh, the World Judge and Savior. But first, those with
the seal of God are introduced.
     John then hears the new song, sung by the twice-72
multitudes, the firstfruits from all Ages and nations who are to
be redeemed in the Leo-Aquarian Age. To be rescued, they must
accept the redeeming grace of the Sacrificial Hero, regardless of
the Age and the name by which he is called. Another requirement
is that they must not be seduced by a counterfeit of the true
Word of God. 
     Then John sees a sequence of 3 warning angels, [probably]
representing 3 of the Warners, Manifestations who warned of the
coming of the Divine Reaper and World Redeemer. The first three
may be Krishna, Buddha, and Muhammad. 
     The Divine Reaper is then introduced, followed by a fourth
angel [Jesus Christ?], who asks Bahá'u'lláh to reap the harvest
of the Ages. The Divine Reaper is followed by a fifth angel, who
ALSO has the power to reap the harvest of the Ages. This is
clearly the Bab. Finally, a sixth angel, the altar angel
[Zoroaster?] of Rev 8:3, is re-introduced who asks the Bab to
cast in his sickle also.
     The chapter ends with a riddle to test the reader's
spiritual insight and intellectual credulity. The solution to
this riddle is 49-lunar years, the duration of Divine Revelation
at the opening of the Leo-Aquarian Age. 


THE LAMB ON ZION:

And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with
him a hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father's name
written in their foreheads. -Rev 14:1

     The verse recalls Chapter 7 in which twice-72 multitudes of
God's servants, from all Ages, races and nations are to be found
acceptable to God the Father in the new Age of Leo-Aquarius.
     The word 'Zion' has several meanings. Physically, it was the
site of the royal palace of David and Solomon's Temple. Because
of this association, the word has come to mean the imaginary
'center' of Jewish national life, and even the Jewish people
themselves. On the religious plane, 'Zion' stands for the Jewish
Theocracy of God, the aspiration of the ancient Jewish devotees,
that once established, would set the Model for the establishment
of a World Theocracy.
     The Lamb is seen standing on 'Zion,' meaning that the Lamb
is manifested in the physical world and fulfills the ancient
aspirations of the Jewish people to establish a Model Theocracy.  
   The Apocalypse tells us several things about the Lamb. For
one, it has "seven horns and seven eyes" (5:6) and represents the
"Seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth."  During the
Age of Leo-Aquarius, it stands in the midst of the throne and
four
beasts, and has been 'slain ' since the foundation of the world 
(13:8). In 13:11 we have learned that a lamb has two 'horns,' and
thus has two names of power. In 5:12 we learn that the Lamb has
been 'slain,' and yet we find the Lamb alive and well in 14:1.
     The astrological aspects of the Lamb have already been
discussed. In the heavens, the Lamb is the sign of Aries that has
always been 'sacrificed' to make way for a new Age. Also we have
discussed the necessity of a Sacrifice on the earthly plane to
correspond to the heavenly sacrifice, invariably represented by a
Sacrificial Hero, whose earthly name is discoverable in every
Dispensation.
     But what are the two names of power implied by 13:11? They
must be 'The Successor' and the 'The Sovereign,' the very names
blasphemously usurped by the beast of the Apocalypse. 'Ali was
the Sacrificial Hero of the Dispensation of Muhammad. As The
Successor, His rightful role was to have been the Successor to
Muhammad; as The Sovereign, His role was to have been the Center
of the Covenant.
     In the Dispensation of Bahá'u'lláh, we have twice-twelve
Elders seated around the throne, and thus there are two members
of every station in the zodiacal wheel. The Bab, after fulfilling
the role of the Lamb during His own Dispensation, has become one
of the Pillars of the new Age- the 'Water Bearer.' Then who are
the two Sacrificial Heroes who will bear the title of 'Lamb'
during the Dispensation of Bahá'u'lláh? There are two such
Heroes, one has been sacrificed, while the other remains alive
and well to "stand on Zion" in 14:1. The Lamb who was 'slain' was
Mirza Mihdi, the 'Purest Branch.' The Lamb who remains alive and
well is 'Abdu'l-Bahá, the 'Most Great Branch.' As 'Ali was
supposed to have done during the Dispensation of Muhammad,
'Abdu'l-Bahá bears two titles; he is the Successor to Bahá'u'lláh
and the Center of the Covenant. -SE {1}
     'Abdu'l-Bahá is shown alive on Zion with those who have the
seal of his natural and spiritual Father, Bahá'u'lláh. As
prophesied by the Jewish prophets of old, the Model Theocracy, is
to be established in the Holy Land. "Out of Zion hath gone forth
the Law of God, and Jerusalem, and the hills and the land
thereof, are filled with the glory of His Revelation." -BH {2}
     As the Manifestation of the Father, Bahá'u'lláh  is the
spiritual Father of the other Manifestations of the past.
Bahá'u'lláh reveals,  "In this most mighty Revelation, all the
Dispensations of the past have attained their highest, their
final consummation."  "He it is," referring to Himself, "Who in
the Old Testament hath been named Jehovah, Who in the Gospel hath
been designated as the Spirit of Truth, and in the Qur'an
acclaimed the Great Announcement."  "But for Him, no Divine
Messenger would have been invested with the robe of prophethood,
nor would any of the sacred scriptures have been revealed."  "Be
fair, ye peoples of the world, is it meet or seemly for you to
question the authority of one Whose presence 'He Who conversed
with God' (Moses) hath longed to attain, the beauty of Whose
countenance 'God's Well-beloved' (Muhammad) had yearned to
behold, through Whose potency the 'Spirit of God' (Jesus)
ascended to heaven, for Whose sake the 'Primal Point' (the Bab)
offered up His life?" -BH {3}
     "Concerning the Manifestations that will come down in the
future 'in the shadows of the clouds,'  know verily that in so
far as their relation to the source of their inspiration is
concerned, they are under the shadow of the Ancient Beauty
(Bahá'u'lláh). In their relation, however, to the age in which
they appear, each and every one of them 'doeth whatsoever He
willeth." -AB {4}

THE NEW SONG IS SUNG AGAIN:

2 And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters,
and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of
harpers harping with their harps: 3 And they sang as it were a
new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the
elders: and no man could hear that song but the hundred and forty
four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth. -Rev 14:2-3

[REB: 2 I heard a sound from heaven like a mighty torrent or a
great peal of thunder: what I heard was like harpists playing on
their harps. 3 They were singing a new song before the throne and
the four living creatures and the elders, and no man could learn
it except the hundred and forty-four thousand ransomed from the
earth.]

     The voices of the twice-72 multitudes from all Ages and
cultures who have been found acceptable to God sing out the
Leo-Aquarian message, but only the redeemed can understand or
learn it. {5}
     The City of Bahá', like 'Zion,' is a MODEL Theocracy. In the
Apocalypse, it is called the New Jerusalem. Only the twice-72
multitudes who are 'redeemed from the earth' will be its
firstfruits. It is NOT, therefore, a 'world government' and has
no secular aspirations. 

These are they which are not defiled with women: for they are
virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he
goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits
unto God and the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for
they are without fault before the throne of God. -Rev 14:4-5


     Those 'clerics' who sell a counterfeit of the true Word of
God in order to acquire material wealth are likened to harlots.
To become defiled by harlots means to become willingly seduced by
the fraud.
     The Sacrificial Hero has had many names and appears in a
different physical body with a new name in each Dispensation. In
one Dispensation, the Lamb is Jesus Christ; in another He is the
Bab, or 'Abdu'l-Bahá. The undefiled will follow the Lamb in every
Age and Dispensation. The firstfruits are the first to hear the
new Song and to follow the new Law. Their mouths will not spread
false doctrine.

THE FIRST SUPPORTING ANGEL:

And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the
everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth,
and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,  Saying
with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour
of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and
earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters. -Rev 14:6-7

     Once again we are reminded [by Krishna? {6}] that the Good
News is a wellspring of guidance available in every Age; it is
eternal and not limited to any special people or culture. The
Judgement is a two-edged sword: it is a punishment for the
defiled and a salvation for the innocent. 

THE SECOND SUPPORTING ANGEL:

And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, that
great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the
wrath of her fornication. -Rev 14:8

     The next angel [Buddha?] informs us of the downfall of
'Babylon.' The word 'Babylon' (Heb 'Bab-el') means literally
'Gate of God.' 'Jerusalem' means literally 'Sacred Peace.' Both
names are sacred and symbolize the City of the Word of God.  The
Word of God, though originally the Holy City, through corruption,
becomes the Wicked City. '

How the faithful city has played the whore!"  REB: Isaiah 1:8  

     Jerusalem is transformed into Babylon and vice versa as the
Holy City decays and is renewed in successive Dispensations. 
      The use of Babylon as a symbol of the corrupted Word is
based upon the story of the Tower of Babel.{7} It was at this
place that the babble of tongues was supposed to have originated.
It requires the addition of only a single letter to convert
Bab-el = Gate of God, into Bal-bel = Confusion.
     Bahá'u'lláh reveals that the corruption of the Word of God
does not result from the conscious falsification or forgery of
the Sacred Texts, but from misinterpretation through idle
imaginings and vain desires. {8}
     Old Testament prophecies foretell that in the last days the
Word will be renewed at Babylon.{19} But Jeremiah prophesied that
the site of old Babylon will be a ruin. Bahá'u'lláh revealed His
mission and renewed the Word at the new Babylon, modern Baghdad,
in 1863. The word 'Baghdad' means literally 'Gift of God.' 

THE THIRD SUPPORTING ANGEL:

And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, if
any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in
his forehead, or in his hand,  The same shall drink of the wine
of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the
cup of his indignation: and he shall be tormented with fire and
brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence
of the Lamb. -Rev 14:9-10

     The third angel [Muhammad?] warns those who willingly accept
the validity of the Umayyad and 'Abbasid dynasties, and those who
willingly pay the taxes that are the hidden agenda of the
caliphate. They shall receive spiritual torments that cannot be
extinguished; their sufferings will be witnessed by the
immaculate souls in heaven in the presence of 'Ali, the
Sacrificial Hero.

And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever:
and they have no rest day or night, who worship the beast and his
image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. 12 Here is
the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the
commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. -Rev 14:11-12

[REB: 12 This calls for the endurance of God's people, all those
who keep his commandments and remain loyal to Jesus.]

     When the illegitimate caliphate conquered the oecumene,
non-Muslim devotees such as Christians, Jews, Zoroastrians and
Sabaeans, were given three choices: pay the business and head
taxes, leave the domain of the Muslim empire, or declare their
allegiance to Islam. Failure to choose one of these three
distasteful alternatives placed the devotee at great risk to
person or property.
    Those who chose the last alternative, who pretended to be
Muslims, were called the Mawali (Clients). The Mawali, who
"received the mark of his name," are also condemned, since their
acceptance of Islam was not based upon a sincere belief in the
teachings of the Prophet but was simply a matter of expediency.
In their failure to flee the Empire, Christian Mawali became
disloyal to Jesus and willing allies of the Caliph. Young male
Mawali often became warriors in the Muslim army.
      'Fire and brimstone' describes the unquenchable and
agonizing spiritual torment of remoteness from God. "Separation
from Thee, O Source of everlasting life, hath well nigh consumed
me, and my remoteness from Thy presence hath burned my soul." 
"Some have made haste to attain the court of the God of Mercy,
others have fallen down on their faces in the fire of Hell, while
others are lost in bewilderment."  "They hasten forward to Hell
fire, and mistake it for light."       "Smoke" is an obvious sign
of spiritual torment.  "The moon of idle fancy hath been cleft,
and the heaven hath given out a palpable smoke."  "What smoke
more dense and overpowering than the one which hath now
enshrouded all the peoples of the world, which hath become a
torment unto them, and from which they hopelessly fail to deliver
themselves, however much they strive?"  -BH {9}

And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed
are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith
the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their
works do follow them. -Rev 14:13

     To 'die in the Lord' means to die from self in order to live
in God. "He who hath attained this station is sanctified from all
that pertains to the world ... This is the plane whereon the
vestiges of all things are destroyed in the traveler, and on the
horizon of eternity the Divine Face riseth out of the darkness,
and the meaning of 'All on the earth shall pass away, but the
face of thy Lord ...' is made manifest."  -BH {10}
     The 'Spirit' is that Source of Divine power that transforms
mere humans into sons of God, and lifts the worldly wayfarer from
the abode of dust to the heavenly homeland. The 'dead in the
Lord' of the last days will be instrumental in bringing forth the
Revelation of Bahá'u'lláh.

ONE LIKE THE SON OF MAN:

14 And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one
sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown,
and in his hand a sharp sickle. -Rev 14:14

[NIV: 14 .... , and seated on the cloud was one "like a son of
man."]

     Bahá'u'lláh, the King of Glory and the Divine Reaper, is
described as one like a Son of Man, descending to earth on a
heavenly throne. 
     This echoes verse 1:12 {11} in which one "like a son of man"
comes with the "clouds of heaven." We have already discussed the
symbolism of clouds as representing glory, trouble, bounty and
veiled obscurement. The meaning of the 'Son of Man' may require
further explanation.
     The title was based upon the concept of a Divine prototype
or primordial Man. According to this belief, the true home of Man
is in heaven. At each Advent, God sends a Messenger, a Son of
Man, to redeem mortal man from his prison of worldliness and to
renew human history.{12}
     The Son of Man also calls himself the Shepherd, the Truth,
the Light, and other titles familiar to readers of the New
Testament. The concept of Man was important in Hebrew and Gnostic
theology and was even incorporated in the FOURTH ECLOGUE of
Virgil. In many ways, the concept resembles that of the Avatar of
Hindu theology, and implies a cyclicity of history that can also
be inferred from astrological theology.
     In the first century BCE, the return of the Son of Man was
widely anticipated. With his Advent, Jesus claimed the title as
his own, and prophesied another return of the "Son of Man in the
glory of his Father." {14} But the modifying phrase 'one like
unto' in verse 14:14 suggests that the title 'Son of Man' will no
longer be understandable in its original context at the end of
the Piscean Age. Indeed, today the title is not generally
understood, and most Christians would claim that the title
belongs exclusively to Jesus Christ. 
     It might be argued that the title does not rigorously apply
to Bahá'u'lláh, since He is not the Manifestation of the Son, but
of the Father. {15}

THE FOURTH SUPPORTING ANGEL:

And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud
voice to him that sat on the cloud. Thrust in thy sickle, and
reap: for the time is come for thee to reap: for the harvest of
the earth is ripe.  And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his
sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped. -Rev 14:15-16

     The next angel requests Bahá'u'lláh to 'thrust in his sickle
and reap.' Mankind is likened to a vineyard as in the parable of
Jesus Christ. The parable of the vineyard is found in all three
synoptic Gospels. 

     In the Matthew (REB) version {13}, Jesus tells of a
landowner of a vineyard who lets it out to tenant vine-growers
and goes abroad. When the harvest season approaches, the
landowner sends his servants to the tenants to collect the
produce that is due to him. Each of his servants are abused, some
killed. Finally he sends his son, who is also killed. When the
Lord of the Vineyard returns from abroad, he will 'bring those
bad men to a bad end' and 'hand the vineyard over to other
tenants'.

     The Lord of the Vineyard, the owner of the vineyard of Man,
lets out His vineyard to the priesthood [tenant vine-growers]. He
disappears from the scene [goes abroad]. When the end of the
Dispensation arrives [the harvest season approaches], the Lord
sends his Messengers [servants] to the priesthood to collect the
souls of his devotees [produce] that is due to Him. Each of his
Messengers are abused, some killed. Finally he sends His son
[Jesus Christ], who is also killed. When the Lord of the Vineyard
[Bahá'u'lláh] returns from abroad, he will 'bring those bad men
to a bad end' and abolish the former priesthood' [hand the
vineyard over to other tenants].
     The World Center of the Faith of Bahá'u'lláh is located on
Mount Carmel in the Holy Land. The word 'Carmel' means the
'Vineyard of God,' and may be mystically correlated with the
parable of Jesus. Other prophecies in the Bible suggest that
Carmel will be connected with Bahá'u'lláh. For example, in
Isaiah, {16} the 'Rod out of the stem of Jesse,' and the 'Scion
from the root of Jesse' refer to Bahá'u'lláh; the 'Branch' refers
to 'Abdu'l-Bahá; the 'holy mountain' refers to Carmel.
     In verse 14:14 above, an angel prompts the Divine Reaper to
reap the harvest of the Ages. Based upon the parable of the
vineyard, that angel is probably Jesus Christ. {17}
 
THE FIFTH AND SIXTH SUPPORTING ANGELS:

And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he
also having a sharp sickle.   And another angel came out from the
altar, which had power over fire, saying, Thrust in thy sharp
sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her
grapes are fully ripe. -Rev 14:17-18

     The angel with the sickle also has the power to reap the
harvest of the Ages; He clearly represents the Bab. The altar
angel with the power over fire, is probably Zoroaster.{17}  The
Zoroastrian Faith is noted for its fire altars, and is centered
in that part of Persia where the Bab was manifested. Also, in
verse 2:28, Zoroaster is connected with the "morning star," the
Herald of a 'new Day.'

A TEST OF CREDULITY:

And the angel thrust his sickle into the earth, and gathered the
vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the
wrath of God.  20 And the winepress was trodden without the city,
and blood came out of the winepress, even unto the horse bridles,
by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs. -Rev
14:19-20

[NIV: 20 They were trampled in the winepress outside the city,
and blood flowed out of the press, rising as high as the horses'
bridles for a distance of 1,600 stadia.]

     Once again, the credulity of the literalist is put to the
test!  The literal conversion of 1,600 stadia is a distance of
about 180 statute miles. The metrical height of a horse's bridle
is about 60 inches. No other dimensions are given, but
optimistically assuming a width of the sea of blood to be only
one mile, the volume of this sea would require the deaths of
about 60 times the total number of men, women and children
existing on the surface of today's earth.
     Verse 20 must be recognized for what it is- a riddle. In
order to solve it, we first recognize that 1,600 is 40-times-40.
The number 40 appears many times in the Bible to signify extreme
tests of long duration. The squaring of a number is its
'perfection.' A stadium was an ancient measure of the earth's
surface. So, one implication of the riddle is that earthbound
humanity 'outside the city' of the renewed Word of God (the New
Jerusalem) will experience extreme spiritual tests over a long
period of time.
     Now consider the height of a horse's bridle. Astrological
constellations are frequently involved in the Apocalypse. In this
instance, the constellation of Pegasus, the Flying Horse, is
suggested by the verse. Pegasus has 7 'spans' of stars between
its hoof and its jaw. With this hint, we recall that the
canonical height of a horse's bridle is 7-spans, where a span is
the distance across the stretched hand of an adult, about 9
English inches. Remembering that 7 is the number of trial and
punishment, again we see that extreme tests of the spirit await
those excluded from the New Jerusalem.
     But why is the riddle expressed as a 'space of
1,600-times-7' ?  Look again. The archetypal value of 1,600 is
also 7. {18} Thus the occult dimension of the riddle is a 'space
of 7-times-7.'       7-times-7 equals 49. This is the period of
Divine Revelation, from the Declaration of the Bab in 1260 AH and
ending with the Ascension of Bahá'u'lláh in 1309 AH, a space of
7-times-7, or 49 lunar years.
     There are other correlations suggested by the riddle. 40
lunar years was the span of time of the Ministry of Bahá'u'lláh.
The span of time from the Declaration of the Bab until the
Ascension of 'Abdu'l-Bahá was 70-and-7 solar years, styled by
Shoghi Effendi, the Guardian, as the Heroic Age of the Bahá'í
Faith.
                      
                      CHAPTER 15- HIS NAME REVEALED


SYNOPSIS:

     The world stage has been set in Chapter 14. In this Chapter, 
the name of the Leading Actor is announced.
     7 more angels are introduced; these are the plague angels
who will support the Divine Reaper in the great drama of the End
of the Age.
     Those of the Piscean Age who managed to overcome the wicked
cunning of the Houses of Umayyah and 'Abbas are extolled. John
sees them standing in triumph as the choir on the Celestial
Pavilion and singing the eternal song, the Message from God, the
same song that was sung by Moses and Jesus during their own
Dispensations.
     The sanctuary of the Tent of Testimony, alas, still existing
in the heavenly realm, is opened. The Glory of God, Bahá'u'lláh,
is also seen to exist in the sanctuary. Smoke from his power,
just as it did in ancient days, fills the Temple, and no one is
able to enter the Temple until the 7 plague angels empty their
vials onto the earth. 


THE SEVEN LAST PLAGUE ANGELS ARE INTRODUCED:

And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven
angels having seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the
wrath of God. 2 And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with
fire; and them that had gotten the victory over the beast, and
over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his
name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of gold. -Rev
15:1-2

[REB: 2 ... those who had been victorious against the beast, its
image, and the number of its name.]

     Once again John is permitted to observe the sea of glass
that represents the outermost surface of the firmament, the
Celestial Pavilion. This time it is mingled with fire to
symbolize the wrath of God and the Last Judgement. The angels
have the number 7, symbolic of trials and punishments.  Verse 2
extols those inhabitants of the heavenly realm who have overcome
the false doctrine of the Houses of Umayyah and 'Abbas (the beast
and its image), and the blasphemous deception of wrongly-guided
Caliphs (the number of its name).


THEY SING THE ETERNAL MESSAGE:

3 And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the
song of the Lamb, saying, Great and marvellous are thy works,
Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of
saints.  4 Who shalt not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name?
for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship
before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest. -Rev 15:3-4

[REB: 3 ...; just and true are your ways, O King of the ages.]

      The song of Moses and the Lamb is the eternal Message, the
Word of God, renewed and readorned in every Dispensation. "In the
days of Moses it was the Pentateuch; in the days of Jesus, the
Gospel; in the days of Muhammad, the Messenger of God, the
Qur'an; in this day, the Bayan (Book of the Bab); and in the
Dispensation of Him Whom God will make manifest (Bahá'u'lláh),
His own Book- the Book unto which all the Books of former
Dispensations must needs be referred, the Book that standeth
amongst them all transcendent and supreme." -BH {1}
     Verse 4 reflects the prophesies in Isaiah {2} regarding the
glorious abode of the Rod out of the stem of Jesse, Bahá'u'lláh. 

THE HEAVENLY TENT IS OPENED: 

5 And after that I looked, and, behold, the temple of the
tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened:  and the seven
angels came out of the temple, having the seven plagues, clothed
in pure and white linen, and having their breasts girded with
golden girdles.  And one of the four beasts gave unto the seven
angels seven golden vials full of the wrath of God, who liveth
for ever and ever. -Rev 15:5-7

[REB: 5 ... the sanctuary of the heavenly Tent of Testimony was
opened, ...]

     John sees that the Tent of Testimony, authorized by Moses,
still persists in the heavenly realm, although its existence on
the earthly plane had long since faded. The sanctuary was that
portion of the tent where people were allowed to assemble and
worship. The Holy of Holies, in the shape of a perfect cube {3},
contained the Ark of the Covenant and was reserved as the special
abode of Jehovah.
     In a deeper sense, the 'Tabernacle' is the Revelation of God
descended upon man in the Temple of the Manifestation. "These
Tabernacles of Holiness, these Primal Mirrors which reflect the
light of unfading glory, are but the expressions of Him Who is
the Invisible of the Invisibles."  "Aid me, O my Lord, to
surrender myself wholly to Thy Will, and to arise and serve Thee,
for I cherish this earthly life for no other purpose than to
compass the Tabernacle of Thy Revelation and the Seat of Thy
Glory."  -BH {4}
      The seven plague angels are protected by golden girdles, a
symbol of a new Faith. Their white linens symbolize cleanliness
and holiness. 

SMOKE FROM THE GLORY OF GOD:

8 And the temple was filled with smoke from the glory of God, and
from his power; and no man was able to enter into the temple,
till the seven plagues of the seven angels were fulfilled. -Rev
15:8

[REB: 8 The sanctuary was filled with smoke from the glory of God
and from his power, ...]

     Verse 8 alludes to an ancient supernatural event that
occurred during the reign of Solomon: {6}

...; and the house was filled with the cloud of the glory of the
Lord. The priests could not continue to minister because of the
cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God. -REB: 2
Chron 5:13-14 

    "The symbolic term 'smoke' denotes grave dissensions, the
abrogation and demolition of recognized standards, and the utter
destruction of their narrow-minded exponents." -BH {5}  It is
this 'smoke' issuing from the spiritual power of Bahá'u'lláh, the
Glory of God, that must be dissipated from the 'sanctuary' before
the peoples of the world will be allowed to enter and worship
Jehovah by His new name, Bahá'.  The seven last plagues must be
released before the smoke can be dissipated. 
     In Greek, 'Glory of God' has a literal value of 1389, which
has an archetypal value of 3. In Arabic, 'Bahá'u'lláh' has a
literal value of 75, which also has an archetypal value of 3. The
Greek word for 'Glory' has a literal value of 135 with an
archetypal value of 9, identical to the literal value of Bahá'.
                     
                     CHAPTER 16- THE END OF THE AGE


SYNOPSIS:

     After revealing the name of the Divine Reaper in the
previous chapter, the Apocalypse now summarizes the dramatic
events surrounding the Advents of the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh. The
time setting of the drama is the mid-19th century; the place
settings are in the regions of Persia, Turkey and Iraq. It is to
be revealed in 7 Acts, each supported by one of the plague
angels.
     The first plague is the religious controversy that befalls
those fanatics in the Muslim world who have been deceived by the 
'image of the beast,' the spiritual descendants of the House of
'Abbas.
     The second plague befalls all of mankind, the spiritual
annihilation of the souls of 'every living creature' that must
precede the creation of a new spiritual world.
     The third plague befalls the corrupt clerics of every
religious Faith. Their teachings are transmuted from life-giving
'water' into death-dealing 'blood.'
     The fourth plague is the spiritual torment that befalls the
corrupt clerics of 19th century Persia, causing many to blaspheme
the name of 'Allah.
     The fifth plague is the spiritual torment and darkness that
befalls the corrupt clerics of the 19th century sacerdotal order
centered at Istanbul.
     The sixth plague is the loss of spirituality that befalls 
the Babi community exiled to Baghdad and its environs. This
plague is accompanied by diabolical deceptions characteristic of
the Umayyah; confusion is created among the Babi's by the claims
of the false prophet Mirza Yahya.
     The Advent of Bahá'u'lláh is announced. He enters and
departs the world stage 'unseen' like a thief in the night.
     The seventh and final plague is the 'piling up of sorrow'
that befalls the entire human race, caused by false teachings and
lies, the effects of which are being experienced today. Every
human being experiences the 'test of the talent' foretold by
Jesus Christ during his physical sojourn on earth. 


     [A detailed history of these events can be found in Shoghi
Effendi's masterpiece, GOD PASSES BY. This dark period of history
can hardly be visualized by the modern reader. Travelers {1}
described the region as technologically backward, and often with
despotic governments and corrupted priesthoods. Thanks to
progressive 20th century leadership, the conditions that abounded
there 150-years ago no longer prevail.]

THE PLAGUE ANGELS ARE GIVEN MARCHING ORDERS:

And I heard a great voice out of the temple saying to the seven
angels, Go your ways, and pour out the vials of the wrath of God
upon the earth. -Rev 16:1

     The voice out of the heavenly Tabernacle is that of the
Divine Reaper, Bahá'u'lláh.

THE FIRST PLAGUE:

And the first went, and poured his vial upon the earth; and there
fell a noisome and grievous sore upon the men which had the mark
of the beast, and upon those which worshipped his image. -Rev
16:2 

     Those with the mark of the beast refers to the Sunni
sacerdotal order, under the control of the caliphate seated at
Istanbul. Those who worshipped the image of the beast refers to
the independent Shi'ah sacerdotal order centered in Persia.
Recall that the first beast was the House of Umayyah, while the
image of the beast was the House of 'Abbas. The two mainstream
19th century sacerdotal orders were the spiritual descendants and
historical analogues of the beast and the image of the beast. 
     The noisome and grievous sore caused by the first plague
angel was the clamor of religious controversy and the sore of
spiritual distress that beset the Muslim world following the
Declaration of the Bab. Some estimates claim that more than 20-
thousand devotees of the Bab were martyred, a great many under
the severest of tortures.  

THE SECOND PLAGUE:

And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea; and it
became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in
the sea. -Rev 16:3

     The second plague angel empties his vial upon the realm of
the spirit, and every living creature in that realm is caused to
expire.
     It is one of the great mysteries of history that each
Manifestation of God is the torchbearer of a new civilization.{2}
For example, Jesus brought a Christian civilization into
existence. In order for this to come about, the 'old world' of
classical civilization had to be destroyed, sacrificed, to make
way for a 'new world.' The inhabitants of the old world were
totally unaware of the cataclysmic event, but the event would
become apparent to future historians.
     In verse 3 we are informed of a much more profound
cataclysm- the 'death' of EVERY living soul in the spiritual
realm. This astonishing event will attend the Manifestation of
the Divine Reaper, and is apparently unique to history. 
"Consider the hour at which the supreme Manifestation of God
(Bahá'u'lláh) revealeth Himself unto men .... at the very moment
preceding His Revelation, each and every created thing shall be
made to yield up its soul to God. This is indeed the Day of which
it hath been written: 'Whose shall be the Kingdom this Day?' And
none can be found to answer."
     But following His Advent, a new world was created:  "Verily,
We have caused every soul to expire by virtue of Our irresistible
sovereignty. We have, then, called into being a new creation, as
a token of Our grace unto men. I am, verily, the All-Bountiful,
the Ancient of Days."  However, not every soul will necessarily
be endowed with 'life' in the new world. In a prayer He says,
"Praise be unto Thee, O my God! Thou art He Who by a word of his
mouth hath revolutionized the entire creation, and by a stroke of
His pen hath divided Thy servants one from another. I bear
witness, O my God, that through a word spoken by Thee in this
Revelation all created things were made to expire, and through
yet another word all such as Thou didst wish were, by Thy grace
and bounty, endued with new life."  -BH {3}

THE THIRD PLAGUE:

And the third angel poured out his vial upon the rivers and
fountains of waters; and they became blood.   And I heard the
angel of the waters say, Thou art righteous, O Lord, which art,
and wast, and shall be, because thou hast judged thus.   For they
have shed the blood of saints and prophets, and thou hast given
them blood to drink; for they art worthy.   And I heard
another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true
and righteous are thy judgments. -Rev 16:4-7

     The third plague angel empties his vial upon the mainstreams
of spiritual guidance- the corrupted clergy and priesthood.  They
are the secret oppressors of the saints and prophets, and their
teachings are transmuted from the water of life into the blood of
death.        

THE FOURTH PLAGUE:

And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power
was given unto him to scorch men with fire.   And men were
scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which
hath power over these plagues; and they repented not to give him
glory. -Rev 16:8-9        

     The fourth angel empties his vial upon the land of Persia,
whose emblem is the sun. The bigoted and defiled among the
Persian clergy are made to feel the fire of spiritual torment.
Even so, they fail to repent of their malicious deeds and to
submit to the Will of 'Allah.      
     The Babi Revelation was born on May 23, 1844 in Shiraz,
Persia. The claims of the Bab, the turmoil caused in Islamdom,
and the rapidity with which the new Faith gained followers,
caused the corrupted clergy to react violently.  The help of the
Shah was enlisted in an attempt to destroy the Faith of the Bab.
The results were armed attacks upon His followers and popular
uprisings in Nayriz, Mazindaran and Zanjan. Mass persecutions,
torture and martyring were involved. Ultimately, the Bab was
martyred in the public square of Tabriz on July 9, 1850.  

THE FIFTH PLAGUE:

10 And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the
beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed
their tongues in pain.  And blasphemed the God of heaven because
of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.
-Rev 16:10-11   

[REB: 10 The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the
beast; ...]       

     The fifth plague angel empties his vial onto Istanbul where
both the caliphate and sultanate are seated. The regime of the
Ottomans now experiences the same spiritual pain and darkness
that had beset the regime of the Shah.      
     As a consequence of the martyrdom of the Bab and the severe
persecutions inflicted on the Babis, in August of 1852, two
obscure and demented Babis made a futile attempt on the life of
the Shah. The results were renewed persecutions and the
imprisonment of leading Babis, including Bahá'u'lláh. It was
during His imprisonment in the Black Pit of Teheran, 1852-3, that
the 'Maiden of Heaven' appeared to Bahá'u'lláh and He became the
Promised One of All Ages.
       On His release from the Black Pit, He was exiled to
Baghdad, Iraq. Iraq was then a Turkish province. Shortly
thereafter, the Sultan of Turkey and his ministers, as well as
the Sunni sacerdotal order, joined hands with the Shah and the
Shiah clericals of Persia and Iraq in an endeavor to stamp out,
once and for all, the Faith and all it stood for. The result was
a further wave of repressive measures.  

THE SIXTH PLAGUE:

And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river
Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of
the kings of the east might be prepared. -Rev 16:12  

        The sixth plague angel empties his vial onto the region
of the Euphrates river. The water of spirituality is dried up,
clearing the way for the Kings of the East, Bahá'u'lláh and His
Successors. {4}
      Following His exile in Baghdad on the banks of the
Euphrates, the Babi community in exile lost its spirituality.
Because of internal conflicts and bickering, Bahá'u'lláh left the
Babi exiles and spent exactly two lunar years (1854-5) wandering
in the mountain wilderness of Kurdistan. The way was being
prepared for the return of Bahá'u'lláh and His public
Declaration.  

And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth
of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the
mouth of the false prophet.  For they are the spirits of devils,
working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and
of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great
day of God Almighty. -Rev 16:13-14  

       The 'frogs' allude to the curse of Moses on the land of
pharaoh, recounted in Exodus. {5} Although Moses and Aaron had
this power over Pharaoh, so did the magicians of Egypt.{6} These
unclean 'frogs' represent false teachings and deceptions.
Miracles are wonders; here they are not of divine origin.
       The dragon and the beast refer to those clerics of
Islamdom who will be under the influence of satanic forces. The
false prophet is introduced as yet another competitor for the
minds and souls of men.
      Although several would-be 'Prophets' arose to proclaim
themselves to be the One foretold by the Bab, "the One Whom God
will make manifest," the most notorious was the nominal head of
the Babi Faith, the false prophet Mirza Yahya. Through the
influence and intrigues of his henchman, the crafty and
diabolical Siyyid Muhammad-i-Isfahani, Mirza Yahya succeeded in
causing a serious breach in the ranks of the Babis-in-exile and
prevented many of the very elect from recognizing the new
Manifestation, Bahá'u'lláh. Reminiscent of the Surih of Joseph as
interpreted by the Bab, Mirza Yahya was a half-brother of
Bahá'u'lláh, and, as prophesied by the Bab, the plots of Mirza
Yahya and Muhammad-i-Isfahani ended in ignominious failure.      
     The Great Day of God Almighty is the Day of God, the
Dispensation of Bahá'u'lláh.  

HE COMES 'AS A THIEF':

15 (Ph) Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth,
and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his
shame. -Rev 16:15   

[REB: 15 ('See, I am coming as a thief! ... ')]

       The verse is parenthetical and calls for special
understanding. It refers to the prophecy by Jesus that the Son of
Man may return as a 'thief.' {7} A 'thief' is one who enters and
departs 'unseen.' It warns us that the Advent of the Divine
Reaper will not be apparent to the world at large, although,
ultimately, the historical facts will become known.
      The Babi community left behind in Baghdad continued to
decline in spirituality and prestige. Finally, after two years of
pleading by the Babis, Bahá'u'lláh was induced to return.
Following His return from the mountain wilderness of Kurdistan,
Bahá'u'lláh, through His teachings and spiritual power, was able
to renew the Faith of God. Hatred, fear, and jealousy of the
renewed vigor of the Babi community by the corrupt Muslim clergy
resulted in further persecutions and banishments of Bahá'u'lláh,
first to Istanbul, thence to Adrianople, and finally to the
prison city of 'Akka, near Mount Carmel in the Holy Land, thereby
fulfilling many prophecies. {8}
      However, before Bahá'u'lláh began His arduous journey to
Istanbul, He revealed himself as the 'One Whom God will make
manifest' foretold by the Bab. His public Declaration took place
at the Festival of Paradise, April 21 to May 2, 1863.
      It is interesting that He departed from the 'land of the
Euphrates' immediately thereafter, going into further exile and
virtual invisibility. Even His incredibly direct and powerful
Tablets to the rulers of the world revealing His mission went
unnoticed. Truly, Bahá'u'lláh, the Glory of God, like a thief,
entered and departed unseen.  

MUSTERING FOR ARMAGEDDON:

16 And he gathered them together into a place called in the
Hebrew tongue Armageddon. -Rev 16:16   

[REB: 16 These spirits assembled the kings at a place called in
the Hebrew Armageddon.] 

      The foul frog-like spirits that dominate the corrupt rulers
of the world will bring them and their followers to a great
'mountain of sorrow' like that which befell the Hebrews in the
valley of Megiddo.
       'Armageddon' is the compound of two Hebrew words 'Har'
('Mountain') and 'Megiddon' (poetic adaptation of 'Megiddo'). The
valley of Megiddo was the scene of great suffering by the Hebrews
during the reign of Josiah. Hence the 'Mountain of Megiddo' means
a great piling up of sorrow.
       The verse alludes to and amplifies the wording of
Zechariah:  

"On that day the mourning of Jerusalem will be as great as the
mourning over Hadad-Rimmon in the vale of Megiddo." -REB:
Zechariah 12:11

        The conflict of Armageddon characterizes the world-wide
sorrow and distress that will result from false teachings and
evil principles. The conflict follows the 'Hour' of Bahá'u'lláh
and the third woe.
      Since His Declaration in 1863, the world has indeed
witnessed a great piling up of sorrow. These sorrows follow from
the destruction of the old world that must precede the rebuilding
of a new world based on the principles and Divine Laws enunciated
by Bahá'u'lláh. Among the more notable sorrows have been
imperialism and economic exploitation; the Great Depression; two
world wars of unprecedented ferocity and suffering; numerous
smaller but deadly wars; the rise of communism, naziism and other
extremist movements; nuclear weapons; international crime
syndicates and drug trafficking; international terrorism; the
suffering resulting from class struggle, racial struggle, and
genocide on a massive scale; the collapse of marriage attended by
unbridled sexuality, the sufferings of children, and widespread
abortion; the world-wide pollution of the air, the soil, and the
oceans. These sorrows are by no means finished, and the testimony
of the righteous is not yet complete.       

THE SEVENTH PLAGUE:

And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there
came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, saying, It is
done.   And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and
there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon
the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great. -Rev 16:17-18  

       The seventh plague angel empties his vial into the air,
meaning that the afflictions to follow will not be localized but
will be world-wide. John hears the voices of those who fall into
trials and temptations, the thunder of the violation of the
Covenant, and the lightning of the anger and wrath of God. There
is a great earthquake of doubts and disturbances in the world of
man.  

THE FALL OF BABYLON:

And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities
of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before
God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of
his wrath.   And every island fled away, and the mountains were
not found.   And there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven,
every stone about the weight of a talent: and men blasphemed God
because of the plague of the hail; for the plague was exceeding
great. -Rev 16:19-21  

       The great city is Babylon, the civilization of the
corrupted Word of God. Profane civilization will degenerate into
three parts personified as the 'three false gods,' Nationalism,
Racialism and Communism.{9}  Cities are institutions; islands are
places of refuge in a sea of chaos, that is, churches; mountains
are the great religions of the world.  "So blind hath become the
human heart that neither the disruption of the city, nor the
reduction of the mountain in dust, nor even the cleaving of the
earth, can shake off its torpor." -BH {10}
       The hail is a rain of great spiritual tests. The word
'talent' comes from the Greek 'talanton'- a balance, or a thing
to be weighed; hence it is a symbol of testing. Man will be
tested by the Book of God revealed by the Balance, the new
Manifestation of God: "In this most perfect balance (the Book of
God) whatsoever the peoples and kindreds of the earth possess
must be weighed."  "The All-Merciful is come invested with
undoubted sovereignty. The Balance hath been appointed, and all
them that dwell on earth have been gathered together." "Say: This
is the infallible Balance which the Hand of God is holding, in
which all who are in the heavens and all who are on the earth are
weighed, and their fate determined, if ye be of them that believe
and recognize this truth." -BH {11}

      The 'talent' in verse 21 alludes to the Parable of the
Talents in Matthew. In Matt 16:21, the disciples of Jesus ask Him
to reveal the signs of His Second Coming and the time of the end
of the Age.  In 24:36, Jesus explains that He does not know WHEN
the Hour will occur, since only the Father knows that
information. Later, in 25:1, Jesus says (REB) 

'When the day comes, the kingdom of Heaven will be like this....' 

     Then, in verses 25:14-30, He reveals the extremely subtle
Parable of the Talents.
      In essence, the Parable warns the future devotee at the end
of the Piscean Age to risk all in order to gain salvation. The
man going abroad (verse 14) is the recurring Son of Man, the
Manifestation of God.  He disappears from the world stage for an
unknown period of time. But before He leaves, He entrusts His
capital (spiritual legacy) to His servants (devotees). The
distribution is unequal: to one servant He entrusts 5 talents; to
another 2 talents; to the third He entrusts only one talent.     
The servant with the greatest portion of the capital, the one
with 5 talents, risks (invests) the 5 and earns 5 more. The one
with 2 talents risks the 2 and earns 2 more. The servant with
only one talent plays it safe and buries his portion in the
ground.
      When the Master returns, the two servants who risked their
portions are rewarded (verses 21, 23): "Well done, good and
faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I
will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of
thy Lord." The one who had been entrusted with only one talent
and had buried his portion, explains (verses 24, 25): "Lord, I
knew thee that thou art a hard man, reaping where thou hast not
sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed: And I was
afraid, and went and hid the talent in the earth: lo, there thou
hast that is thine."
      Alas, the Lord calls this man a "wicked and slothful
servant," confirms that he reaps where he has not sown and
gathers where he has not strawed (verse 26), and explains that
this should have been a warning to take a risk. He then takes the
talent from the slothful servant and gives it to the one who had
already gained 5.

       When the Son of Man returns in the "Glory of his Father"
{12}, he will reap where he has not sown and gather where he has
not strawed. This is the reason for the fear expressed by the
third servant, and the reason for the fear of those who reject
the Manifestation of the Leo-Aquarian Age. But we should remember
the admission of the Master [Jesus] that, he too, reaped where he
had not sown and gathered where he had not strawed. Those
deprived devotees who bury their small portion of the Master's
legacy in the ground of fear and narrow mindedness, will have
even that portion taken from them and given to others.  
                     
                     CHAPTER 17- MYSTERIES REVEALED 


SYNOPSIS:

     What follows is a test of the reader's spiritual and
intellectual acuity. If his solutions to past riddles in the
Apocalypse are correct, he will be able to solve the riddles in
Chapter 17.  
     The great whore, Babylon, is the civilization created by the
corrupted Word of God. She is the mistress of the spiritual and
political potentates of the world, and the secret cause of the
world's abominations.
     The beast that "was" is the Persian Empire initiated by
Cyrus the Great.
     The beast that "is not" is the Greek empire initiated by
Alexander the Great.
     The beast that "is" is the Muslim empire initiated by the
House of Umayyah. 
     The great whore sits on the throne of the 7 dominions
conquered by the House of Umayyah. But she also rules over the
peoples of the 7 Churches of Asia.
     Five of the 7 dominions will have fallen after the
Revelation and before they are conquered by the Umayyah; one will 
remain sovereign; one will be a new dominion carved out of West
Turkestan, but will exist only until it is destroyed by Genghis
Khan. 
     The Persian-Greek empire will have had 7 un-repeated names
of rulers by the time of the caliphate. The Caliph will be the
8th ruler of that empire, yet will represent one of the 7
Churches of Asia.
     The House of Umayyah will have 10 un-repeated names of
chiefs, beginning with its secret king Abu-Sufyan, and ending
with Ibrahim. Similarly, the House of 'Abbas that will take over
the empire, will also have 10 un-repeated names of chiefs. The
neo-Umayyad caliphate set up in Spain will continue the pattern
of 10 un-repeated names. 
     At the end of the Piscean Age, the illegitimate caliphate
will oppose the Bab, but their efforts will fail, because the Bab
is a Lord of lords, and King of kings. The Bab will declare an
end to the Dispensation of Muhammad; the illegitimate caliphate
will be extinguished. 


1 And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven
vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will
show unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth on
many waters:  With whom the kings of the earth have committed
fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made
drunk with the wine of her fornication. -Rev 17:1-2   

[REB: 1 ... 'I will show you the verdict on the great whore, she
who is enthroned over many waters.]       

     The great whore is Babylon, the wicked city of the corrupted
Word of God. She sits enthroned over many nations, populations,
races and languages. The world's rulers have made use of her
services- intoxicating lies and distortions, to reinforce their
power over the masses.  

THE WOMAN AND THE BEAST:

So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I
saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of
blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. -Rev 17:3  

       Scarlet is the color of spiritual beauty in Islamdom. The
7 heads and 10 horns identify her steed at the end of the Piscean
Age as the beast of the Apocalypse. The spiritual descendants of
Abu-Sufyan, the Destroyer from the House of Umayyah, each bear
the blasphemous title 'The Caliph.'
      The whore lives in the wilderness of spiritual desolation.
"... such souls as tread the valley of arrogance and pride, are
lost in the wilds of remoteness, walk in the ways of their idle
fancy, and follow the dictates of the leaders of their faith." -
BH {1}

THE WOMAN'S APPEARANCE DESCRIBED: 

And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and
decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden
cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her
fornication. -Rev 17:4  

       The whore is blasphemously arrayed in the purple of
royalty and the scarlet of spiritual beauty. She is bedecked with
precious gifts bestowed upon her by her clientele, the corrupt
priesthood and temporal leaders. She carries a beautiful cup
containing the intoxicating brew of her perversions.

SHE IS BABYLON:

And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE
GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. -Rev
17:5  

       The verse explains that the great whore Babylon, the
corrupted Word of God, is the secret source of all the world's
abominations.  

A RIDDLE:

And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of saints, and with
the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered
with great admiration.  And the angel said unto me, Wherefore
didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and
of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and
the ten horns.  The beast that thou sawest was, and is not: and
shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition:
and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were
not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world,
when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is. -Rev
17:6-8       

     The beast that "was" is the Persian empire, {2} which was
initiated by Cyrus the Great in 550 BCE.
     The beast that "is not" is the empire of Alexander the
Great, who conquered the Persian empire in 331 BCE; Alexander's
empire was dismantled shortly after his untimely death less than
a decade later. 
     The beast that shall ascend out of the pit of error is the
illegitimate caliphate, initiated by the House of Umayyah in 661
CE.
     The riddle describes the Umayyad empire as a continuation of
the Persian empire, which, indeed, resembled it in culture,
structure and prosperity. The incursion of Alexander, although
introducing enduring cultural artifacts, in the perspective of
history, was little more than a temporary interruption.
      The angel explains that the Persian empire was, is not, and
yet will be revived. Ultimately, the illegitimate caliphate that
will rule the revived Persian empire, will be destroyed (go into
perdition). Those whose names are not written in the Book of Life
will marvel when they behold the Persian empire come into
existence a second time.  

9 And here is the mind that hath wisdom. The seven heads are
seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. 10 And there are
seven kings; five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not
yet come; and when he cometh he must continue a short space. 11
And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is
of the seven, and goeth into perdition. -Rev 17:9-11   

[REB: 9 'This calls for a mind with insight.  The seven heads are
seven hills on which the woman sits enthroned.  10 They also
represent seven kings: five have already fallen, one is now
reigning, and the other has not yet come. When he does come, he
is to last for only a little while.  11 As for the beast that was
once alive and is alive no longer, he is an eighth- and yet is
one of the seven, and he is going to destruction.]

       The riddle concerns the steed on which the corrupted Word
is mounted. John is told that the 7 heads represent both 7
mountains and 7 kings.
      A 'mountain' is a symbol of a Faith. Thus he is told that
the corrupted Word of God will dominate all of the 7 Churches of
Asia that are listed in Chapter 1.
      A king governs a dominion, and thus there must be 7
dominions. These are the 7 dominions governed by the House of
Umayyah. We have already listed these dominions in a previous
chapter. Of the 7 dominions, 5 will have fallen and will be under
the control of foreign powers before their conquest by the beast.
These were the Roman-Byzantine dominion around Damascus
(Palestine and part of Syria),    the dominions of Arabia, 
Egypt,  Africa (Libya), and Andalusia (Spain).  One dominion 'is'
and remains sovereign until the hour of the beast. This was
Persia.  The dominion which 'is not yet come' was Transoxania. It
will 'continue a short space,' meaning that it will cease to
exist with the invasion of Genghis Khan in 1218-1220 CE. {3}
      The beast that 'was and is not' was the Persian empire and
its successor, the empire of Alexander. It had kings with 7
un-repeated names: Cyrus, Cambyses, Gaumata, Darius, Xerxes,
Artaxerxes, and Alexander. Therefore the Caliph became the eighth
'king' of the Persian empire. And yet he is 'one of the seven,'
meaning that his empire is Islam, one of the seven Churches of
Asia.  
       Verse 11 says that (eventually) the beast will be
destroyed. The caliphate was abolished by the Turkish Grand
National Assembly on March 2, 1924, less than three years after
the Ascension of 'Abdu'l-Bahá.  

And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have
received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour
with the beast. -Rev 17:12  

       The angel explains to John that the 10 horns represent the
un-repeated names of rulers who will receive ephemeral power from
the beast, the illegitimate caliphate initiated by the House of
Umayyah. At the time of the Revelation, circa 104 CE, these
rulers had not yet appeared but would appear starting with the
hour of the beast, circa 661 CE.
      We have already listed these 10 un-repeated names in a
previous chapter. Summarizing very briefly, the first beast was
the creation of the archenemy of Muhammad, Abu-Sufyan, the
'Destroyer' and the secret 'king' over the House of Umayyah (Rev
9:11). His name is un-repeated in the list of chiefs. After the
murder of 'Ali, there were 14 Caliphs from the House of Umayyah,
but with only 9 more un-repeated names of chiefs, beginning with
Mu'awiya, the son of Abu-Sufyan, and ending with Ibrahim.
      In the 'wounded head that healed,' the Cordoban caliphate
in Spain, there were 18 neo-Umayyad Caliphs, but again with only
10 un-repeated names of chiefs, beginning with 'Abd al-Rahman and
ending with Sulayman.
      With the usurpation of the caliphate by the second beast,
the House of 'Abbas, there were 10 Caliphs with 10 un-repeated
names of chiefs, beginning with As-Saffa and ending with
Al-Mutawakkil.
      Thus the pattern of 10 names was repeated (at least) 3
times in the formative history of Islamdom. {4}    
  
These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto
the beast.   These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb
shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings:
and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.
-Rev 17:13-14  

       Verse 14 reminds us of the 'war' that the beast will make
against the Lamb, recounted in Chapter 12. We recall that the
Bab, being a Lord of lords, and King of kings {5}, was also the
re-manifestation of the Twelfth Imam who mysteriously disappeared
while still a child in the year 260 AH.  "Verily He (the Bab) is
the King of the Messengers and His Book is the Mother Book, did
ye but know."   "... the Ancient Beauty appeared in the year
sixty (1260 AH), in the person of 'Ali-Muhammad, the Bab."   "Thy
Lord, the Most High (the Bab), addresseth thee, from His realm of
glory ..."   "... this, the Lord of days, ... the Day in which
the Beauty of the All-Glorious shone forth in the exalted person
of 'Ali-Muhammad, the Bab."   -BH {6}

And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the
whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and
tongues. -Rev 17:15  

       This defines the sea of humanity, verse 17:1. The
corruption of the Word of God is ubiquitous, not limited to any
single race, nation or culture.  

And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall
hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall
eat her flesh, and burn her with fire.   For God hath put in
their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their
kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be
fulfilled. -Rev 17:16-17  

       The spiritual descendants of Abu-Sufyan, the Destroyer,
will detest the corrupted Word of God, will make her spiritually
desolate, and will condemn her with fiery words. God has ordained
that they shall satisfy His Will and agree with each other,
giving their dominions to the illegitimate caliphate until the
end of the Piscean Age.  

And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which
reigneth over the kings of the earth. -Rev 17:18  

       The great whore is identified as Babylon, the corrupted
Word of God. She is the secret Mistress of the governors of the
world. 

                 CHAPTER 18- THE DESTRUCTION OF BABYLON


SYNOPSIS:

     This chapter announces the destruction of the great whore,
Babylon, the wicked city [civilization] of the corrupted Word of
God.  
     The fall of her city is announced by a mighty angel
[Gabriel?]. Her services have been used by the powerful and rich
of the earth. The people of the earth are invited to assist in
the administration of her punishment.
     The great whore pretended that she was still a fertile
source of civilization, and that the Covenant was still her
husband. Therefore her destruction will come at the last Day, the
Hour of Judgement. The rich and powerful of the earth will be
saddened by her demise, and the merchandise of her civilization
will no longer be in demand.
     The corrupted Word will be 'thrown into the sea' because she
has caused the spiritual downfall of so many souls of the world.
The music glorifying the Churches will be silenced, and marriages
will no longer be performed under her laws. Her great secret,
that she was the hidden cause of war and martyrdom of the
righteous, will become evident to all. 


BABYLON IS FALLEN!


And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven,
having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory.  
And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the
great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of
devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every
unclean and hateful bird. -Rev 18:1-3  

     Perhaps it is the archangel Gabriel, the Announcer, who
informs John of the collapse of Babylon. Her city is twice
fallen; fallen in heaven and fallen in earth.
     Birds are likened to souls or spirits, and may be unclean;
"... We have warned the faithful to anticipate the appearance of
the Birds of Darkness. There can be no doubt whatever that the
croaking of the Raven shall be raised in certain lands, as it
hath been heard in recent years."  "Like the bats of darkness,
they lift not their heads from the couch except to pursue the
transient things of the world, and find no rest by night except
as they labor to advance the aims of their sordid life."
      But birds can also represent clean souls or spirits:
"Bursting through his cage, he will, even as the bird of the
spirit, wing his flight to his holy and everlasting nest.  -BH
{1}
       Since Bahá'u'lláh seized power over the spiritual realm in
1863, the material realm has witnessed a dramatic decline in the
fortunes of the ecclesiastics and temporal rulers. The decline is
world-wide, but the decline in the Christian world will be more
evident to Western readers. Students of modern history of the
last 150 years have long marveled at the sudden collapse of
institutions and governments that had roots as remote as the
Middle Ages. The Churches of Christendom have witnessed a decline
in the power of their leaders, starting with Pope Pius IX who
lost his dominion over the Papal States to Garibaldi in 1871,
while the Russian Orthodox Church lost its power to the
Bolsheviks in 1917. Protestant denominations have fared no
better, and have lost their ability to influence governments and
the morality of the citizenry at large. 'Revivalist' movements,
whether from the left or the right, have had little enduring
effect, and we witness the rear guard actions of Christendom in
disarray and defeat.  

For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her
fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed
fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed
rich through the abundance of her delicacies. -Rev 18:3  

       Every civilization requires a guiding image. The guiding
image determines the cultural values, and the standards of
personal interactions of her citizens. The guiding image also
sets the goals of the government, and forms the basis of the
legal codes and the definition of 'justice.'  On a more palpable
level, the guiding image determines which material artifacts are
'goods' and which are not, thereby regulating the standards of
industry, the media, the government and the arts, and,
consequently, the distribution of money, power, influence and
commitments.
      The guiding image ought to be the Truth enunciated in the
uncorrupted Word of God, or else it will create a tyranny, a war
machine, or some other satanic form of social organization. And
even though a civilization may have been launched by a divinely
inspired image, the depletion of Truth through overlays of
humanly-limited theological speculation, misinterpretation, or
deliberate falsification will inevitably destroy her beauty and
integrity, and she will become intolerable.
      It is because of the depletion of Truth that mankind has
experienced repeated disasters during past Ages, and, in
particular, the schizoid journey of the Piscean Age.  

AN INVITATION:

And I heard another voice from heaven saying, Come out of her my
people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive
not of her plagues.  For her sins have reached unto heaven, and
God hath remembered her iniquities. 6 Reward her even as she
rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works:
in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. -Rev 18:4-5  

[REB: 6 Pay her back in her own coin, repay her twice over for
her deeds! Give her a potion twice as strong as the one she
mixed.]

       The victims of the injustice created by the corrupted Word
of God are warned to withdraw from her in order to avoid her
plagues and sufferings. Furthermore, they are invited to join in
the administration of those plagues which will befall her in her
final destruction.         

How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so
much torment and sorrow give her; for she saith in her heart, I
sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. -Rev 18:7  

       The verse uses symbols of Isaiah, {2} indicating the
parallel of her fall with that of Babylon of the Chaldeans, her
sorcerers, magicians and astrologers.  The great whore pretended
that she was still fertile, that her husband the Lamb was still
alive, and that she was the Queen of the Covenant.  

HER JUDGEMENT:

Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death and mourning,
and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong
is the Lord God who judgeth her. -Rev 18:8  

       The great whore will be destroyed at the Last Day, and she
will be burned with the fire of spiritual torment.  

And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and
lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her,
when they shall see the smoke of her burning.  Standing afar off
for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas that great city
Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come.
-Rev 18:9-10  

       The judgment of the whore will come with the Hour of the
Divine Reaper. Smoke is a palpable sign. Her destruction will be
apparent to everyone who has eyes to see.  

THE LAMENT OF THE MERCHANTS AND SEAMEN:

And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for
no man buyeth their merchandise anymore:  The merchandise of
gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine
linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood,
and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most
precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble. 13 And
cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine,
and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and
horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men.  And the
fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and
thou shalt find them no more at all.  The merchants of these
things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the
fear of her torment, weeping and wailing.  And saying, Alas, alas
that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and
scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! -
Rev 18:11-16   

[REB: 13 "..... and human lives."]

       The merchants and traders of the Piscean Age have been
made rich by making use of false doctrine, the services of the
whore. The verses describe some of their commodities of luxury,
and warns the traders in these 'goods' that their wealth and
power will be seized from them.   

For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every
shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as
many as trade by sea, stood afar off,  And cried when they saw
the smoke of her burning, saying, what city is like unto this
great city!  And they cast dust on their heads, and cried,
weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas that great city wherein
were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her
costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate. -Rev 18:17-19  

       The wealth from the services of the whore of the Piscean
Age will not be limited to any one country, nor even to one
continent.  

THE GREAT MILLSTONE:

Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and ye holy apostles and prophets;
for God hath avenged you on her.  And a mighty angel took up a
stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying,
Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down,
and shall be found no more at all. -Rev 18:20-21  

       The metaphor of a millstone cast into the sea is used by
Jesus in the synoptic Gospels. The great whore will suffer the
fate of one who causes the spiritual downfall of another. {3} 
But the metaphor used in the context of Revelation suggests a
less obvious meaning.  The zodiacal wheel is likened to a great
millstone. {4} In golden times at the beginning of a new Age, the
mill grinds out peace, plenty and happiness.  But as times
worsen, the mill grinds out salt. Finally, at the end of the Age,
it ends up at the bottom of the sea where it creates a vast
whirlpool, a Maelstrom, and grinds out rock and sand.  

And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and
trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no
craftsman, of whatever craft he be, shall be found any more in
thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all
in thee;  And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in
thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be
heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great
men of the earth; and by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.
-Rev 18:22-23  

      The language of Jeremiah {5} is used once again to show the
parallel to a Fall.  But in Jeremiah's prophecy, the Fall is to
be that of Israel to Babylon.  In the context of Revelation, the
physical city of Babylon will be a ruin as explained by Jeremiah.
{6} It is a spiritual Babylon, the civilization created by the
corrupted Word of God, that will fall at the end of the Piscean
Age.  The music played in glorification of the whore will be
silenced. Those industries dependent upon her will grind to a
halt. The Light of Guidance that she blasphemously carried will
be snuffed out, and marriages will no longer be sanctified under
her laws.  

THE TRUE CULPRIT:

And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of
all that were slain upon the earth. -Rev 18:24  

       We are again reminded that the corrupted Word of God is
the secret cause of war and the murders of the righteous.  

                 CHAPTER 19- THE TRIUMPH OF BAHA'U'LLAH

                                        

SYNOPSIS:

     After an introductory salutation, a 'wedding' between the
Covenant and the purified and cleansed Word of God is announced.
Those who are invited to the wedding feast are blessed.
     The 'Master' who is to preside over the feast is introduced.
He is Bahá'u'lláh, who rides the white horse of Divine doctrine,
but now called Faithful and True. Several of his attributes are
described, and in particular his 'vesture dipped in blood,'
signifying that he is the 'long lost Joseph' now returning in
triumph and power.  Since he is the Lord of Hosts, he is
accompanied by his retinue of 'heavenly hosts'.
     His servant, the angel 'in the sun,' invites the social
rejects and disenfranchised to the feast, just as foretold by
Jesus in the Parable of the Wedding Feast. The repast of the
feast is to be the villains of past Ages, the clients of the
great whore- the corrupted Word of God.
     Again, the final struggle for the minds and souls of men is
alluded to. The battle is joined, and the villains of the Piscean
Age are vanquished. The true meaning of the 'feast' thereby
becomes manifest.   


PRAISE UNTO GOD:

And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in
heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and
power, unto the Lord our God;   For true and righteous are his
judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt
the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his
servants at her hand.   And again they said, Alleluia, and her
smoke rose up for ever and ever.   And the four and twenty elders
and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the
throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia.   And a voice came out of the
throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that
fear him, both small and great. -Rev 19:1-5  

       The voice out of the throne is that of Bahá'u'lláh, the
Bird of the Celestial Throne. He is to be the spokesman for God
during the Leo-Aquarian Age.  

And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the
voice of many thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God
omnipotent reigneth. -Rev 19:6  

       The voice of many waters and mighty thunderings is that of
the Manifestations of God, and their many peoples, nations and
languages.  

THE BRIDE IS READIED:

Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the
marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself
ready.   And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in
fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the
righteousness of saints. -Rev 19:7-8  

       The language of Isaiah {1} is used here. The corrupted
daughter of Babylon, cleansed and purified, is to be reunited
with her husband, the eternal Covenant. The Lamb's Bride is to be
the mother of a new civilization, a 'new Jerusalem.' It will
replace the corrupted civilization of Babylon.

      The symbolism of white linen is revealed.  

THOSE INVITED TO THE WEDDING FEAST:

9  And He saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called
unto the marriage supper of the Lamb.  And he saith unto me,
these are the true sayings of God.  10 And I fell at his feet to
worship him.  And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy
fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of
Jesus: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. -Rev
19:9  

[REB: 9 The angel said to me, 'Write this: "Happy are those who
are invited to the wedding banquet of the Lamb!" ' He added,
'These are the very words of God.'  10 I prostrated myself to
worship him, but he said, 'You must not do that! I am a
fellow-servant with you and your brothers who bear witness to
Jesus.  It is God you must worship. For those who bear witness to
Jesus have the spirit of prophecy.']

       The angel alludes to Jesus' Parable of the Feast. {2} 
John is told that the words are from God, and he proceeds to
prostrate himself before the messenger. However, John is
admonished for this act, and reminded to worship the Originator
of the message and not the Messenger.  A true witness to the
Prophethood of Jesus, will, himself, have the spirit of prophecy,
and will look to God, the real Source of the Prophetic Spirit.
During his earthly sojourn, Jesus often attempted to make his
devotees understand this distinction:  


"When you have lifted up the Son of Man you will know that I am
what I am. I do nothing on my own authority, but in all I say, I
have been taught by my Father."  "To believe in me, is not to
believe in me but in him who sent me; ..." -REB: John 8:28, 
12:44

THE MASTER OF THE FEAST:

And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that
sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness
he doth judge and make war. -Rev 19:11  

       Bahá'u'lláh is the Lord of Hosts, that is, the Lord of the
Heavenly Armies.  He is shown riding a white horse, a symbol of
spiritual power and authority. Whereas in Chapter 6, the rider of
the white horse was the corrupted Church, now the horse is ridden
by Faithful and True, a synonym for many of the titles of
Bahá'u'lláh.
      Examples of his titles that are equivalent to 'Faithful and
True' are: Bearer of the Trust of God,  Fountain of the Root of
Knowledge,  Well Spring of Revelation,  Bird of the Throne,  Word
of Truth,  Sun of Truth, Day Star of Divine Revelation.      
     'Faithful and True' (Greek 'Pistos kai Alethinos') has a
literal value of 1269 by gematria and an archetypal value of 9,
the Seal of Bahá'u'lláh. There may be a double-entendre here; 
1269 AH is also the date of the third woe, the Revelation to
Bahá'u'lláh in the Black Pit.  

His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many
crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he
himself. -Rev 19:12  

       'Eyes as a flame of fire' was introduced in 1:14 and 2:18,
and describes the stunning eyes of Bahá'u'lláh. The many crowns
he wears are his many titles and his sovereignty over the
Divinely revealed Faiths of the world.
       360 variants of the word 'Bahá'' ('Glory') were written by
the Bab on his mystic Tablet called the 'White Stone' (2:17). 
When this Tablet was delivered to his devotees, only 'Husayn-'Ali
knew that the name referred to him, and that the Tablet revealed
the Name of the next Manifestation.
      The Covenant is always transmitted through the Ages by the
'White Stone.'  Although false prophets will always claim the
'White Stone' as their own, only the True Prophet, the
Manifestation of God, is capable of revealing its hidden contents
and through the power of His Utterance prove that its concealed
Name refers only to Himself.     

HIS VESTURE:

And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood; and his name
is called The Word of God. -Rev 19:13  

        His 'vesture dipped in blood' alludes to the cloak of
Joseph. {3} In the Genesis story, the brothers of Joseph become
jealous over a beautiful multicolored cloak given to him by their
father Jacob.  They hatch a plot to get rid of Joseph and throw
him into a pit in the wilderness. In order to explain the
disappearance of Joseph to their father, they soak the cloak in
blood as evidence that he had been devoured by a wild beast.  The
Genesis story goes on to recount the eventual triumph of Joseph
over his family in Egypt through the power bestowed upon him by
pharaoh.
       The story of Joseph is a prophecy of the sufferings of
Bahá'u'lláh and his eventual triumph. As a result of the
confiscation of his property, Bahá'u'lláh was left without even a
cloak to wear. His loved ones pieced together a multicolored
cloak made of remnants of other garments. The resulting garment
was then, literally, dyed red.
      Indeed, the sufferings sustained by Bahá'u'lláh are
historic. Though born into a wealthy and powerful family (as was
Lord Buddha), his property was confiscated, he was imprisoned in
dungeons and jails, bound by massive chains, banished from place
to place over a period of 40 years, was the target of numerous
conspiracies and attempts on his life, was poisoned twice, and
underwent the torture of the bastinado.  "By the righteousness of
God! The tribulations we have sustained are such that any pen
that recounteth them cannot but be overwhelmed with anguish.  No
one of them that truly believe and uphold the unity of God can
bear the burden of their recital.  So great have been our
sufferings that even the eyes of Our enemies have wept over Us,
and beyond them those of every discerning person." -BH {4}
      The 'Word of God' (Greek ''O Logos Theou') has a literal
value of 927 and an archetypal value of 9, the Seal of
Bahá'u'lláh.  Some of the titles of Bahá'u'lláh that are synonyms
for this phrase are: Pen of the Most High, Voice of the Ancient
of Days,  the Mystic Herald,  Voice From the Burning Bush, 
Fountain of Wisdom,  Tongue of Eternity,  Spirit of God,  Pen of
the Most Great Name.

HIS RETINUE:

And the armies which were in heaven followed him on white horses,
clothed in fine linen, white and clean.   And out of his mouth
goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations:
and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the
winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.   And he
hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF
KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. -Rev 19:14-16
 
     The weapon of the Lord of Hosts is the Sword of Truth.  Even
though his weapon is not physical, he rules the nations with a
'rod of iron,' not with a shepherd's hook.  He is the Divine
Reaper, and is KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.{5}
     Bahá'u'lláh has declared himself, in unequivocal terms, to
be 'King of Kings.'{6} Although many have claimed that the title
belongs to Jesus, nowhere do we find evidence that Jesus actually
claimed this title or any of the other titles implied by these
verses. There is substantial evidence in the New Testament that
Jesus claimed the title 'Messiah' or 'Christ', but not the title
'King of Kings.'  
     Paradoxically, the best evidence that Jesus, in truth, was
the 'Messiah of the Jews' comes from the Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
wherein the spiritual rank of Jesus is exalted in unparalleled
terms. Jesus alludes to this paradox in John: 

'When the Spirit of Truth comes .... . He will glorify me, for he
will take what is mine and make it known to you.' -REB: John
16:13,14

HIS DEVOTEES ARE INVITED:

17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a
loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of
heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of
the great God: -Rev 19:17

[REB: 17 .... He cried aloud to all the birds flying in mid-
heaven: ...]

     The angel stands in the Sun of Truth and invites the birds
of 'mid-heaven' to partake of the wedding feast of the Lamb.

     In Jesus' Parable of he Wedding Feast, the Master of the
household (the Manifestation) invites his friends and colleagues
(devotees) to come to a magnificent feast. They all decline,
giving one excuse or another.  Finally, in anger, the Master
tells his servant to 

'Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town, and
bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame ... I
want my house full.  I tell you, not one of those who were
invited shall taste my banquet.' -REB: Luke 14:21-24

     In 18:2 we learned that the civilization created by the
whore of Babylon has become the "cage of every unclean and
hateful bird." Now we see that the social rejects and
disenfranchised of that civilization are to partake of the feast. 
In response to the question, 

"Where, Lord [is to be the Kingdom of God]?" 

     Jesus answered, 

"Where the carcass is, there will the vultures gather." -REB:
Luke 17:20, 37

That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains,
and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them
that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond,
both small and great. -Rev 19:18  

       The social rejects and disenfranchised are invited to
consume the 'flesh' of those who have become rich and powerful
through the use of false doctrine during the Piscean Age.  The
four horses and their riders of Chapter 6 are specifically
included in the repast (the corrupt religious leaders, the
warmongers, the captains of economic injustice, and the ungodly).
The repast also includes those socially underprivileged who 'wear
the wrong garments' to the feast {7}, that is, those who may be
victims but who violate the Covenant. 

"For many are invited, but few are chosen." {8}  


HIS ENEMIES GATHER FOR BATTLE:

And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their
armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the
horse, and against his army. -Rev 19:19  

       The caliphate and the other corrupt powers of the earth
gather their forces in an attempt to destroy the Message of
Bahá'u'lláh, the Divine Reaper.
       Besides the murders, imprisonments, torture and
persecutions of Bahá'ís in the East, we see the forces of
negation starting to gather in the West. 'Bahá'í-ism' is
occasionally attacked from the pulpit;  emotionally charged books
that falsely label the Bahá'í Faith as a 'cult,' or as simply an
'heretical sect of Islam' are now available in bookstores; 
individuals and groups, both overt and covert, are attacking the
Faith through various media.  

HIS ENEMIES TAKEN:

20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that
wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had
received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his
image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning
with brimstone. -Rev 19:20   


[REB: 20 The beast was taken prisoner, along with the false
prophet who had worked miracles in its presence ...]

       The annihilation of the caliphate, and the collapse of the
'Azali' movement (the partisans of Mirza Yahya) are specifically
prophesied.  

And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon
the horse, which sword proceedeth out of his mouth:  and all the
fowls were filled with their flesh. -Rev 19:21  

       The remainder of those named in the indictment of verse 18
are to be vanquished by the Word of God emanating from the Pen of
Bahá'u'lláh, the KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.{9}  
                         
                         CHAPTER 20- SATAN BOUND


SYNOPSIS:

     This chapter reveals the meaning of 'death,' 'resurrection,'
the 'second death,' etc., and even gives a brief glimpse of
events of the next thousand years! The sequence of events
[beginning with the rejection of Jesus], is as follows:{1}

      Rejection of Jesus the Messiah = First Death
      Acceptance of Bahá'u'lláh = First Resurrection
      Satan bound a thousand years
      Judgement of the dead
      Rejection of Bahá'u'lláh - Second Death  
      The Millennium of Peace
      Satan released for a short time
      Gog and Magog wage war on the saints
      'Fire from heaven' = another Manifestation of God (?)      
      Second Resurrection
      Satan bound a second time  

     The chapter opens with satanic forces of deception being
'bound' for a thousand years, that is, the 'Millennium.' But we
are warned that, afterwards, these negative forces will be loosed
once again for a 'little season.'
     The power of spiritual dominion during the thousand years is
to be given to those 'sitting on thrones,' that is, to the Bahá'í
Universal House of Justice. The 'psyches' of the righteous of the
Piscean Age are to be 'resurrected' and will reign with the
Anointed One, Bahá'u'lláh, during that thousand years.
     The remaining 'psyches' will not become 'resurrected' until
the end of the thousand years.
     After the thousand years, the satanic forces of deception
will, once again, be loosed into the world. Another great 'war'
is forecast, this time waged by the evil forces of 'Gog and
Magog' against the 'camp of the saints' [Mount Carmel?] and the
'beloved city' [Haifa or Jerusalem?]. But 'fire from God'
[another Manifestation?] will overpower the satanic forces of Gog
and Magog. The 'Deceiver' and the guilty are to be judged and
cast into the 'lake of fire' by One sitting on a 'great white
throne' [Bahá'u'lláh or the next Manifestation?].


       We recall that in a letter to the Leo-Aquarian Jews (the
Church of 'Smyrna'), verse 2:11, those Jews who are able to
overcome the false teachings within their Faith will be able to
avoid the 'second death.' Their 'first death' followed from their
rejection of the healing Message of Jesus. As a consequence,
their Temple was destroyed, Jerusalem became a desolate ruin, and
they were sent into a world-wide exile that lasted for almost
two-millennia. The 'Exile' itself has become their religion, in
which they cling to the hope of a 'Messiah,' presumably a genetic
descendant of David {2}, who will come to restore their kingdom
and the glory of ancient days. Their religion has become a 'dead'
religion of tradition, without 'spirit.'    

SATAN BOUND A THOUSAND YEARS:

And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the
bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.   And he laid hold
on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan,
and bound him a thousand years,  And cast him into the bottomless
pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should
deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be
fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season. -Rev
20:1-3          

     Following the triumph of Bahá'u'lláh, the forces of negation
and deception will be held in check for a thousand years, the
'Millennium.'  But, for a brief time following the thousand
years, satanic forces will once again be released into the world
of man.  

JUDGEMENT AND THE FIRST RESURRECTION :

And I saw thrones, and they that sat on them, and judgment was
given unto them; and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded
for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had
not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received
his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they
reigned with Christ a thousand years. -Rev 20:4  

       The power of spiritual dominion will be given to the
Bahá'í Universal House of Justice who sit on nine THRONES {16}
during the Millennium. The 'souls' of the righteous will be
'resurrected' and will reign with the Anointed One for the
duration of the Millennium. Among those souls will be the martyrs
of Jesus, and of those who died for the Word of God from every
Divinely revealed Faith, and even those true Muslims who voted
with their feet to avoid paying the taxes that kept the 'beast'
alive during the Piscean Age.
     The 'resurrection' will be of 'souls' (Greek 'psyche'), not
of 'bodies.' The meaning of this is that the heavenly attributes
and virtues of the saintly and righteous of former Dispensations
will become re-manifested among those reigning with the Anointed
One. 

".... 'In very truth I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of
God without being born of water and spirit. Flesh can give birth
only to flesh; it is spirit that gives birth to spirit ..."
"Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and
I will raise him up at the last day. ... This is the bread which
came down from heaven; it is not like the bread which our
fathers ate; they are dead, but whoever eats this bread will
live for ever." -REB: John 3:5-6,  6:54-58

      "...  Even as Jesus said: 'Ye must be born again.'{3} 
Again He saith, 'Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit,
he cannot enter the Kingdom of God.  That which is born of the
flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.' 
The purport of these words is that whosoever in every
dispensation {4} is born of the Spirit and is quickened by the
breath of the Manifestation of Holiness, he verily is of those
that have attained 'life' and 'resurrection' and have entered the
'paradise' of the love of God.  And whosoever is not of them, is
condemned to 'death' and 'deprivation,' to the 'fire' of
unbelief, and to the 'wrath' of God.  In all scriptures, the
books and chronicles, the sentence of death, of fire, of
blindness, of want of understanding and hearing, hath been
pronounced against those whose lips have tasted not the etherial
cup of true knowledge, and whose hearts have been deprived of the
grace of the Holy Spirit in their day.  Even as it hath been
previously recorded: 'Hearts have they with which they understand
not.' " -BH {5}
      "He (Jesus) said, 'If any man eat this bread, he shall live
forever.' That is to say whosoever assimilates these divine
perfections which are within me will never die; whosoever has a
share and partakes of these heavenly bounties I embody will find
eternal life; he who takes unto himself these divine lights shall
find life everlasting.'  How manifest the meaning is! How
evident!  For the soul which acquires divine perfections and
seeks heavenly illumination from the teachings of Christ will
undoubtedly live eternally.  This is one of the mysteries of
sacrifice."  -AB {7}
  
THE SECOND DEATH:

But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years
were finished.  This is the first resurrection.   Blessed and
holy is he that hath a part in the first resurrection: on such
the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God
and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. -Rev
20:5-6      
     
     John learns that many 'psyches' will not be re-manifested in
the First Resurrection. Those righteous psyches who are
re-manifested will reign as 'priests' with the Anointed One
(Bahá'u'lláh) for the duration of the Millennium.
       Apparently there will be many who do not accept the
Revelation of Bahá'u'lláh.  These will be excluded from the New
Jerusalem that will 'come down from God out of heaven' in the
next chapter.  

SATAN RELEASED AGAIN; GOG AND MAGOG:

7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed
out of his prison.  8 And shall go out to deceive the nations
which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to
gather them together to battle: and the number of whom is as the
sand of the sea. -Rev 20:7-8   

[REB: 7-8 When the thousand years are ended, Satan will be let
loose from his prison, and he will come out to seduce the nations
in the four quarters of the earth.  He will muster them for war,
the hosts of Gog and Magog, countless as the sands of the sea.]   
   
     The enigmatic forces of Gog and Magog that are the subject
of Ezekiel {6} are introduced.  Just exactly who these names
represent has been the subject of much speculation and debate.
Such speculation is fruitless, since the events prophesied in
these and following verses are to transpire a thousand years from
now, and prophecies are only helpful in elucidating the past, not
in predicting the future.  A few points will be stressed that are
evident from these verses and other sources:

       The forces are to be very numerous and will come from a
wide region, perhaps the whole earth.
      At least a thousand years will have elapsed from the
Revelation of Bahá'u'lláh.  Ezekiel {8} informs us that Israel
will have been restored and at peace for a long time.
      The object of the invasion will be to take spoils. {9}
      The invasion will fail through divine agency. {10}

       Those are the salient points regarding Gog and Magog that
can be gleaned from the biblical texts. But there are other
points to be found in the Qur'an regarding Gog and Magog:       

     Their forces will "hasten from every high land." {11}
     A Figure (code-named?) "Dhoulkarnain" (literally 'The
two-horned') will be given power by God to lead forces against
Gog and Magog. {12}

SATAN BOUND A SECOND TIME:

9 And they went up to the breadth of the earth, and compassed the
camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came
down from God out of heaven and devoured them.  And the devil
that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone,
where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented
day and night for ever. -Rev 20:9-10   


[REB: 9 They marched over the breadth of the land and laid siege
to the camp of God's people and the city that he loves.  But fire
came down on them from heaven and consumed them.]

       These are necessarily pure speculations: The 'camp of
God's people' may allude to the Bahá'í World Center on Mount
Carmel. The 'city that He loves' could be Jerusalem; then again
it could be Haifa, or some other city that will be loved by God
during the Millennium of Peace.
      The 'fire from heaven' correlates with Ezekiel {13} and the
Qur'an {14}. The meaning is ambiguous, and it could mean the
fiery words of a prophet or of another Manifestation of God. We
shall have to wait and see.  

THE GREAT WHITE THRONE:

And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from
whose face earth and heaven fled away; and there was found no
place for them. -Rev 20:11  

       Again the words are ambiguous, probably by design. Is the
One sitting on the throne Bahá'u'lláh, or is he/she the
Manifestation who will follow Bahá'u'lláh? {15}
      No 'place' for whom? The answer is found in verse 14-
"Hades and Death."  After the Millennium, the Dragon is to be
captured and imprisoned for a second time, and finally cast into
the "lake of fire" where the beast and the false prophet are
already bound.
      Some may be disappointed that the next thousand years is
not an 'open book.'  If it were so, there would be no test from
heaven 'about the weight of a talent' for the next spiritual
generation. Bahá'u'lláh has warned us not to expect another
Manifestation of God until at least a full thousand years has
transpired, but has not specified the maximum time for us to
wait.  The Writings also tell us that the 'Age of Prophecy' began
with the Prophet Adam and ended with Muhammad, the 'Seal of the
Prophets.' The 'Age of Fulfillment' began with the Bab, but its
duration has not been revealed.  We are told, however, that the
future Manifestations will be 'under the shadow' of Bahá'u'lláh
for, perhaps, five-hundred-thousand years.

THE SECOND DEATH:

And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the
books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book
of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were
written in the books, according to their works.   And the sea
gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered
up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man
according to their works.  14 And death and hell were cast into
the lake of fire.  This is the second death. -Rev 20:12-14   


[REB: 14 Then Death and Hades were flung into the lake of fire.
This lake of fire is the second death; ]

       The 'second death' is the 'lake' of spiritual torment and
unbelief. The sea of humanity is to be judged according to their
deeds in the Balance of the Word of God.  

And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast
into the lake of fire. -Rev 20:15   

                        CHAPTER 21- THE HOLY CITY


SYNOPSIS:

     After having a glimpse of the Millennium of Peace, John is
now granted the inestimable privilege of seeing, in figurative
form, the new Jerusalem that will attend the Manifestation of the
Glory of God, Bahá'u'lláh.  The new Jerusalem is to be the
fulfillment of the prophecies of Jesus and the Jewish prophets of
old.  
     The chapter opens with John seeing 'a new sky and a new
earth'; it is the future Age of Leo-Aquarius. New spiritual and
material laws attend the new Age. The sea of uncertainty that
attended the Piscean Age will have disappeared.
     The City of 'new Jerusalem' will replace Babylon, the wicked
city. John sees the new Jerusalem descending, figuratively, from
the cosmos. It is to be an earthly microcosm of the heavenly
macrocosm. 
     The new Law is characterized as the 'bride' that will be re-
married to the Covenant- the Lamb. The Tabernacle of God, long
since disappeared from the earthly realm, will, once again, exist
on earth with mankind. Spiritual pain and the sorrow of death
will disappear.
     The Alpha and the Omega, Bahá', will make all things new,
and the Word of God will be disbursed throughout humanity without
cost. Those souls who have overcome the false teachings of the
former Faiths shall inherit all the City's spiritual riches, and
they shall be sons of God. Those who are fearful of investing
their single 'talent of silver,'the atheists, the despicable,
etc., will be deprived of the spiritual riches of the new
Jerusalem. 
     John is carried to a high place where he can see the new
Jerusalem in all its panoramic splendor. He sees that it has
Bahá'u'lláh, the Glory of God, as its Governor. The City
resembles, in microcosm, the heavens, with its twelve celestial
gates (the zodiac), and with each gate guarded by an angel. As
explained in Genesis 49, the names of the twelve tribes are
inscribed on the gates. The 12 foundations are seen to be
inscribed by the names of the 12 Apostles, just as Jesus had
promised.
     The City has a pyramidal shape with sacred dimensions. An
angel measures the Sacred City with a spiritual measure, a
'golden reed.' The occult pyramid, like the Bahá'í House of
Worship, is seen to contain 9, the number of Bahá', in various
parameters, and to fit perfectly inside the celestial sphere from
which it descended, thereby marrying the material and spiritual
laws in perfect harmony.      
      The protective outer wall of the City is also seen to have
sacred dimensions, but this time it is metered by the cubit, a
sacred measure of the Perfect Man. The 'height' of the wall is
twice-72 cubits, corresponding to the 144-multitudes who are to 
be redeemed from all Ages and Faiths.
     Even the materials used in the building of the Sacred City
are seen to have spiritual significance. The 12 Foundation Stones
represent the 12 Basic Principles of the Bahá'í Faith. Only those
with the innocence of pearls will be allowed to enter the gates
of the new Jerusalem.
     The City contains no physical 'temples,' that is, 'barriers'
that separate God from man; Bahá'u'lláh is to give 'light' to the
City while 'Abdu'l-Bahá is to be its 'lamp.' Neither is there to
be a priestly hierarchy.


THE NEW HEAVEN AND EARTH:

And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven 
and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
-Rev 21:1   

"Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass
away." - REB: Matt 24:35

     The prophecy of Jesus becomes fulfilled with this verse. The
Precession of the Equinoxes has caused the 'heaven' or 'sky'
(Greek 'ouranos') of the Piscean Age to give way to the sky of
the Leo-Aquarian Age.  By the 'law of correspondences' the
'earth' (Greek 'ge') has also been replaced by a new Era of human
affairs.  But even though we have a new sky and a new
civilization, the words of Jesus are still with us!
     The Divine Law is always composed of two parts: the eternal
spiritual Law that remains unchanged from Age to Age, and the
material Law that must be altered to accommodate the evolutionary
changes in the human condition.  For example, in the Leo-Aquarian
Age, the Law of only One God, and the 'Golden Rule' are still in
effect.  But there is no longer ambiguity regarding the
permissibility of slavery, or the equality of men and women. 
Also, we are living in a world of technology and science, a world
inconceivable to the common citizen of the Piscean Age.  The Law
of the 'new earth' must accommodate these and other irreversible
facts of human history.
      "No more sea" means that there will no longer be the 'sea'
of chaos, of doubt and disbelief concerning the existence of God,
or of life after death, and other Divinely revealed truths among
the citizens of the new Jerusalem.    

JOHN SEES THE NEW JERUSALEM:

And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God
out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. -Rev
21:2     

     "O ye beloved of God! O ye children of the Kingdom!  Verily,
verily the new heaven and the new earth are come.  The holy City,
new Jerusalem, hath come down from heaven on high in the form of
a maid of heaven, veiled, beauteous, and unique, and prepared for
reunion with her lovers on earth." -AB {1}
      The symbol of Isaiah {2} is alluded to. But in Isaiah, her
husband is the Lord of hosts, the Holy One of Israel. In the
Apocalypse, her husband is to be the Lamb, a symbol of the
Sacrificial Hero and the Eternal Covenant.  Either way, the
symbol is valid, since the marriage symbolizes the renewal of he
Covenant by the Twin Manifestation.
      'Jerusalem' (Greek 'Hierousalem') has a literal value of
864 and an archetypal value of 9, the Seal of Bahá'u'lláh.  864
is exactly twice 432, the literal value of 'new name,' {3} which
also has an archetypal value of 9.  

THE TABERNACLE IS WITH MANKIND:

3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the
tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and
they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and
be their God. -Rev 21:3   

[REB: 3 I heard a loud voice proclaiming from the throne: 'Now
God has his dwelling with mankind!]

       The voice is that of Bahá'u'lláh, the Bird of the
Celestial Throne.  

THE END OF SPIRITUAL DEATH:

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there
shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall
there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. -
Rev 21:4       

      As in most of the Apocalypse, the words are to be taken
spiritually.  In the new Jerusalem, the belief in the eternal
life of the spirit will be firmly grounded, no longer lost in a
sea of uncertainty and doubt.  The sorrow, crying and anguish of
physical death will be eliminated.
      The verse alludes to Isaiah: {4}

....l take delight in Jerusalem and rejoice in my people; the
sound of weeping, the cry of distress will be heard in her no
more. - REB: Isaiah 65:19 

     The same chapter of Isaiah also quotes the words of
Bahá'u'lláh: "Here am I! Here am I!",{5} spoken to a nation that
does not invoke him by name. It also contains an interesting
reference to Achor and Sharon: "....; they will belong to my
people who seek me." {6} "But you that forsake the Lord and
ignore my holy mountain, who spread a table for the god of Fate,
and fill bowls of spiced wine in honour of Destiny, I shall
destine you for the sword, ..." {7} "I am creating new heavens
and a new earth!" {8}  Greatly extended physical longevity is
prophesied. {9} "The wolf and the lamb will feed together and the
lion will eat straw like the ox, and as for the serpent, its food
will be dust.  Neither hurt nor harm will be done in all my holy
mountain, says the Lord." {10} {11}

THE ALPHA AND OMEGA MAKES ALL THINGS NEW:

And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things
new.  And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and
faithful.   And said unto me, It is done.  I am Alpha and Omega,
the beginning and the end.  I will give unto him that is athirst
of the fountain of the water of life freely. -Rev 21:5-6  

      The words are "true and faithful" because they come from
"Faithful and True," the rider of the white horse in verse 19:11. 
Recall that Faithful and True has an archetypal value of 9, as
does Alpha and Omega.  In contrast to former sacerdotal orders
that may have required a tithe or a payment in return for the
dispensing of sacraments, the Word of God is to be disbursed free
of charge in the new Age.
      The 'beginning and the end' alludes to: 

"From the beginning I reveal the end, from ancient times what is
yet to be; I say, 'My purpose stands, I shall accomplish all that
I please.'  I summon a bird of prey from the east- from a distant
land a man to fulfil my design. ..." -REB: Isaiah 46:10-11  

      The words of El remind us of a claim of Bahá'u'lláh:  "I am
the royal Falcon on the arm of the Almighty."{30}


THE SAVED AND THE DAMNED:

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his
God, and he shall be my son.   But the fearful, and unbelieving,
and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and
sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in
the lake of fire which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is
the second death. -Rev 21:7-8  

       The "fearful" are the first on the list of those who will
suffer the second death- those devotees of past Faiths who are
afraid to risk their single talent of silver will not become sons
of God, the citizens of the new Jerusalem.  Atheists, the obscene
and liars of every kind will suffer the same fate as murderers,
fornicators (REB), sorcerers and idolaters.  

JOHN IS PERMITTED TO SEE THE BRIDE:

And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the
seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me,
saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. 
And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high
mountain, and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem,
descending out of heaven from God.   Having the glory of God: and
her light was like unto stone most precious, even like a jasper
stone, clear as a crystal; -Rev 21:9-11  

       It has been an objective of man down through the Ages to
mirror God's heavenly realm with physical structures.  Now John
witnesses the ancient dream becoming a reality as the holy City
descends from the God of the heavens and the earth.  The new
Jerusalem is to exist on the earthly plane, not suspended in
space somewhere in the outer cosmos.  It will be an earthly
microcosm of the heavenly macrocosm.
      Bahá'u'lláh, the Glory of God, is to be the name of the
Manifestation who will govern the new Jerusalem.  His name is
given for the second time in the Apocalypse, the first being in
15:8.
      The jasper stone, {12} already mentioned in 4:3, symbolizes
the oneness of humanity, having many colors but particularly red,
the hue of the human heart.  Bahá'u'lláh's mission includes, as a
paramount objective, the unification of mankind with all their
various Faiths.  

THE TWELVE GATES OF THE CITY:

And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the
gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the
names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: On the east
three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates;
and on the west three gates. -Rev 21:12-13  

       The twelve gates correspond to the twelve zodiacal signs
and their supposed divine (angelic) influences in the world of
man.  
     'Abdu'l-Bahá {16} has revealed the significance of the
twelve gates. His Tablets are summarized:
       According to the theories of astrologers (not to be taken
literally {17}), the world of physical possibilities is
determined by the dawning place of the phenomenal sun shining
through those constellations.  Similarly, the Sun of Truth
manifests and pours forth His bounty in twelve constellations of
holiness.  The twelve constellations of holiness have been
manifested in different Ages as the twelve sons of Jacob, the
twelve chiefs of tribes with Moses, the twelve Apostles of Jesus,
and the twelve Imams of Islam. {18}
      The Heavenly Jerusalem, the sacred Law of God, therefore
has twelve Gates or Stars of Guidance through which advancing
souls enter into the City of God. Each one of the holy souls in
the twelve constellations of holiness has received the power of
Divine confirmation.  Since, symbolically, the Twelve Gates
surround the entire universe, all existence is under the shadow
of these souls, and these Gates are the foundations of the City
of God, the Divine Jerusalem.
     In contrast to the heavenly macrocosm that was considered to
be a sphere, the base of the earthly microcosm is square, with
sides oriented to the four cardinal directions and four corners
symbolic of the equinoxes and solstices. We recall that the names
on the gates were derived in Chapter 7 by correlating Genesis 49
with Revelation 7:5-8: {19} 

Reuben/Aquarius,  Zebulon/Pisces, Gad/Aries,  Issachar/Taurus, 
Simeon & Levi/Gemini,  Benjamin/Cancer, Judah/Leo,  Dinah
(veiled)/Virgo,  Asher/Libra,  Manasses/Flying Eagle,
Joseph/Sagittarius,  Nephtali/Capricorn.{13}
       
     The zodiac as revealed in Chapter 7 has two remarkable
differences from the pre-Piscean male-dominated zodiac. Due to
the coalescing of Simeon & Levi into the single sign of Gemini, a
space in the zodiac is left for Virgo. Thus in the Piscean Age,
womanhood was secretly elevated to her rightful place in the sun. 
This accounts for the influence of Virgo (though still veiled) in
the holy Figures of Mary and Fatima.  Secondly, the occult
substitution of Manasses/Flying Eagle for Dan/Scorpio invalidated
the theory that evil influences emanate from the zodiac through
the sign Scorpio, which, according to astrological theology,
derives its power from the God of the cosmos. Thus God became
totally benevolent, the God of Love, and evil influences could no
longer be attributed to Him.  These principles are overtly
elevated to the rank of revealed Law in the Leo-Aquarian Age.  

THE FOUNDATIONS OF THE WALL:

And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the
names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb. -Rev 21:14  

       In this case, the Lamb is Jesus, and his Twelve Apostles
are memorialized forever by correlating their names with the
Twelve Foundation Stones of the new Jerusalem.
      We have previously discussed the probable names of the
Apostles corresponding to each of the twelve zodiacal signs.  To
review: {14} 

     Simon-Peter the Fisherman = Pisces;  Levi the Tax Collector
= Libra;  Simon the Zealot = Aries;  Thomas the Doubter = Taurus; 
James & John the Sons of Thunder = Gemini; Judas Iscariot the
Betrayer =  Scorpio. {15} Also Mary the Virgin (veiled) = Virgo. 
Less likely are Andrew, brother of Simon-Peter (also a fisherman)
= Aquarius; Judas, son of James (also a fisherman) = Cancer.  

     But Scorpio is to be removed from his position in the zodiac
in the Leo-Aquarian Age. As explained in Acts 1:26, Matthi'as was
chosen by lot to replace Judas Iscariot. Therefore the new sign
replacing Judas Iscariot/Scorpio is Matthi'as/Flying Eagle. 
Unknown are the roles of Philip, Bartholomew and Matthew, who are
probably to be correlated with Leo, Sagittarius and Capricorn. 

THE SPIRITUAL METERING STICK:

And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city,
and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof. -Rev 21:15  

       "In this Greatest Day, the rod of the plant and the rod of
iron are changed into a rod which is of pure gold and is from the
endless treasuries of the Kingdom of God." {20}
                 
THE SACRED GEOMETRY:

And the city lieth foursquare, and the length is as large as the
breadth: and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand
furlongs.  The length and breadth and height of it are equal. -
Rev 21:16  

      The verse is ambiguous, but regardless of the assumptions
made, the dimensions of the holy City can be shown to have occult
significance.
      Although many geometric figures have equal length, breadth
and height, the most ubiquitous are the cube and the pyramid.  In
a pilgrim's note {21} 'Abdu'l-Bahá explains that a pyramidal
shape is intended by the verse, since it is a natural and
enduring shape.
      Besides the symbolism of the pyramid as mirroring the
natural and enduring qualities of the pristine Word of God, one
recognizes the fact that pyramids have been built as sacred
structures throughout the oecumene, the most impressive, perhaps,
being those at Giza. {22} 
      The 12-thousand furlongs of verse 16 correlate with the 12
signs of the zodiac, and the pyramid's base becomes 3-thousand
furlongs (an earthly measure) on each side. But how do we measure
the height of the pyramid?  With only a golden rod, the only
remaining dimension of the pyramid that can be readily measured
is the slant edge, and this will be taken as its 'height.' And,
indeed, a work by the ancient Greek historian Herodotus
strengthens this conjecture, since the length of the slant edge
was given to Herodotus as the height of the Great Pyramid by an
Egyptian priest, circa 450 BCE.
      Thus the holy City becomes a perfect pyramid with all 8
edges equalling 3,000 units of earthly measure.
      The first inference that can be drawn from this geometry is
that it will fit perfectly inside a hemisphere, with the square
base just inside the circle. {22} The square, in astrological
geometry, represents the 'square earth,' while the circle
represents the 'eternal circle of heaven.'  By analogy, the
square base of the pyramid represents the temporal Law of God
that must be modified to fit contingent historical conditions,
while the enclosing circle represents the eternal Law that
remains unchanged throughout the Ages.  The holy City thus
'squares the circle,' {23} the ancient dream of mystics
throughout the Ages.      
     The corners of the base of the pyramid represent the four
'pillars' of the Leo-Aquarian Age:  Bahá'u'lláh, 'Abdu'l-Bahá,
the Bab, and Shoghi Effendi.{24} The apex of the pyramid
represents the Apex of the world {25} and points the way to the
open door in heaven.
      The four sides of the pyramid correspond, not only to the
four annual seasons, but to the four zodiacal seasons, one full
zodiacal year {26} being the time required for the Precession of
the Equinoxes to complete a full cycle of the zodiac.  The last
zodiacal season, beginning at the Age of Taurus and ending at the
start of the Age of Leo-Aquarius, covered a period of about 6,500
years, roughly equal to the traditional duration of the Adamic
Cycle.
      It can be shown with a little algebra {27} that the
following parameters of the holy City will each have an
archetypal value of 9:

      The area of the base
      The perimeter of each triangular face
      The area of each triangular face
      The total area of the four triangular faces
      The total area of the pyramid
      The volume of the pyramid

      That the dimensions of the holy City contain hidden
meanings can be inferred by the emphasis placed upon them by
Ezekiel.  But the dimensions, like the holy City itself, are
symbolic, not physical.  Zechariah reveals that the real
Jerusalem cannot be measured, nor will it have physical walls: 

"... I myself shall be a wall of fire around it, says the Lord,
and a glorious presence within it." -REB: Zech 2:1-5

THE HEIGHT OF THE WALL:

17 And he measured the wall thereof, an hundred and forty and
four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the
angel. -Rev 21:17  

[REB: 17 Its wall was one hundred and forty-four cubits high, by
human measurements, which the angel used.]

       The verse alludes to the 'royal gift of the cubit,' a
custom of antiquity in which the forearm of the priest-king was
designated as the unit of measure that would prevail as the
harmonizing principle (Egyptian 'neter') during his reign.  The
Manifestation, as both man and angel, is the Perfect Man and the
Only Son of God during his Dispensation.  He is, therefore, the
measure of all things human.
      Twice-72 was first introduced in Chapter 7.  Among other
things, it is another clue to the identity of the Manifestation,
since its archetypal value is 9, the literal value of 'Bahá'' and
the Seal of Bahá'u'lláh.  We now see the number connected with
the 'wall' that will protect the holy City. The twice-72 'working
arms' are the specially endowed and confirmed souls, the primal
points or 'mustard seeds' cast over the soil of mankind, who will
guard, nurture and protect the Heavenly Garden, the new 
Jerusalem.
      Recall that ancient Jewish mystics believed that YHWH had
12-times-6 three-letter names called the 'Divided Name of YHWH.'
{31} Thus, in past Ages, each gate of the invisible zodiac
emanated 6 spiritual attributes. Because of the Twin
Manifestation, twice-6 attributes are to emanate from each sign
during the Leo-Aquarian Age.
      Since the cubit is a 'spiritual measure,' its use is
appropriate as a measure of the new Jerusalem.  In astrological
symbolism, the 144 cubits measure the spiritual attributes
emanating from the heavenly realm that will enrich, guide and
protect the citizens of the holy City.
      With the new clue, the number 9 is indicated 7-times in the
dimensions of the new Jerusalem. {28} 
       The dimensions of the new Jerusalem reflect the dimensions
of the Bahá'í House of Worship, 'The Dawning Place of God's
Praise.' Several of these highly symbolic structures now exist
throughout the world.  Their architectural canon has been
enjoined by Bahá'u'lláh as having a dome, nine sides, and nine
doors.  It can be shown, again using the circular property of 9,
that the following 7 parameters of these structures each have an
archetypal value of 9:

       
      The perimeter of the wall
      The area of the wall
      The area of the dome
      The volume of the dome
      The area of the floor
      The total area of the exterior
      The total enclosed volume

       Besides being the literal value of 'Bahá'' and the Seal of
Bahá'u'lláh, the 9 symbolizes the highest unity, being the
greatest single digit number. The 9 doors represent the essential
unity of man and the Divinely Revealed Faiths.  In ancient 
number symbolism, 9 is the 'number of finality, judgement, and
the fulfillment of prophecy.'  It is also the 'Perfected Triad'
(3-times-3).  

THE MATERIAL OF THE WALL AND ITS FOUNDATIONS:

And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city
was pure gold, like unto clear glass.   And the foundations of
the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious
stones.  The first foundation was jasper;  the second, sapphire;
the third, a chalcedony;  the fourth, an emerald;   The fifth,
sardonyx;  the sixth, beryl;  the seventh, chrysolyte;  the
eighth, beryl;  the ninth, a topaz; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; 
the eleventh, a jacinth;  the twelfth, an amethyst. -Rev 21:18-20 

       The verses allude to Isaiah {32} in which the Bride, now
purified and redeemed, is to be married to the Lord of Hosts, the
Holy One of Israel.  Her City will have foundations of sapphires,
battlements of red jasper, gates of garnet, and boundary stones
of precious jewels.
      In the context of Revelation, the stones have physical
attributes suggestive of the spiritual attributes of the Twelve
Basic Principles of the Bahá'í Faith. {29}
      
     The material of the wall is jasper, symbolizing the Oneness
of the World of Humanity, since it comes in many colors, but
especially red, {33} the color of the heart.
      The City is of purest gold, meaning that only purity and
heavenly virtues will be found inside.
      The first and foremost foundation stone is jasper, symbolic
of the principle that Humanity Is actually One race.
      The second foundation stone is sapphire, a stone of truest
blue, the color of justice, faith, inspiration, loyalty and
truth.  It stands for the principle of the Independent
Investigation of Truth.
      The third foundation stone is chalcedony, a stone of purest
white, reflecting all seven colors (seven Faiths) equally well.
It stands for the principle that all Divinely revealed Faiths Are
essentially One, since their common origin is God, the most
manifest of the manifest, and the most hidden of the hidden.     
     The fourth foundation stone is emerald, a stone with the
green of nature, symbolizing harmony, unity, immortality and
humility.  It uniquely harmonizes with every other color, and
stands for the principle that enlightened Religion should and
Must Be the Source of Unity.
      The fifth foundation stone is sardonyx, a stone of
equi-layered red and white. It stands for the principle of the
Equality of Men (red) and Women (white).
      The sixth foundation stone is sardius, a stone that changes
color depending upon how it is viewed.  The same is true of
Science and Religion, and it stands for the principle of their
eventual Agreement and Unity.
      The seventh foundation stone is chrysolite, a stone of
exquisitely pure green, the color of absolute sincerity,
truthfulness, purity and selflessness. Only when our hearts are
pure and free of prejudice and superstition can our secret
thoughts be engraved on the Chrysolite Tablet. The chrysolite
stands for the principle of the Elimination of All Prejudice.     
     The eighth foundation stone is beryl, a stone of
bluish-green, combining the attributes of the sapphire and the
emerald:  justice, faith, inspiration, loyalty, truth, harmony,
unity and humility.  These attributes established in the hearts
of men will permit the Establishment of Universal Peace.
      The ninth foundation stone is the golden topaz, the color
of the sun. The light of knowledge and the glory of wisdom will
follow when Universal Education is established throughout the
world.
      The tenth foundation stone is chrysoprasus, of clearest
green.  It embodies truthfulness, justice, sincerity and purity.
These requisites are necessary for a Spiritual Solution of the
Economic Problem.
      The eleventh foundation stone is jacinth.  Like one form of
jasper, it is a clear red, the universal color, the color of the
human heart.  The heart of one race can understand the heart of
another only when it can speak the same language.  It stands for
the principle of an Auxiliary Universal Language.
      The twelfth foundation stone is amethyst.  Its violet
symbolizes spiritual light, reverence, healing, serenity and
poise.  The World Parliament of Man must embody these attributes
in order to guide mankind in a world at peace. 

THE MATERIAL OF THE GATES:

And the twelve gates were twelve pearls: every several gate was
of one pearl: and the street of the city was pure gold, as it
were transparent glass. -Rev 21:21  

       Pearl is the stone of innocence.  Each gate is made of a
single pearl, emphasizing that the innocent and only the innocent
may enter therein. Once inside the City, they will walk on
streets of golden purity.  

NO TEMPLE IS NEEDED INSIDE:

22 And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the
Lamb are the temple of it. -Rev 21:22    

[REB:  22 I saw no temple in the city, for its temple was the
sovereign Lord God and the Lamb.]

       A 'temple' {34} is a place 'cut off.'  In ancient times,
the temple had separated enclosures with varied 'degrees of
holiness.'
      In Exodus, {35} God promises to dwell among the Israelites
forever, PROVIDED Solomon and his successors {36} are obedient to
His ordinances, precepts and commands. For whatever reason,
Solomon's Temple was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar;  Zerubabel's
Temple was profaned by Syrians and Romans; Herod's Temple was
destroyed by Titus. Each catastrophe implied to the Jews that
they had become alienated from God.
      In the new Jerusalem, Temple worship is no longer needed,
since there is to be no place 'cut off' from the blessings and
the light of God. The Bahá'í House of Worship, contrary to
commonly held misconceptions, is not a 'temple,' since it has no
priesthood, no ritual, no altar, no pulpit, and no separated
'degrees of holiness'; it is literally, by name, intent and
practice, a 'Dawning Place of God's Praise.'
      The most sacred of Bahá'í institutions is the 'Nineteen Day
Feast' that is usually held in private homes.  It consists of
three distinct sessions: worship, community business, and social. 
During the worship session, the Sacred Writings of the Faith are
read and prayers are raised.  The community business session
includes plans, reports, letters from the Friends, etc., but is
devoid of offering plates and conspicuous donations.  The social
session is just that, a time in which the Friends freely mingle,
enjoy conversation and music, and share the delights offered by
the host.  
     
NO NEED FOR THE SUN OR MOON:

23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to
shine on it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is
the light thereof.   And the nations of them which are saved
shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do
bring their glory and honour into it.   And the gates of it shall
not be shut at all by day; for there shall be no night there.  
And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. 
And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth,
neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they
which are written in the Lamb's book of life. -Rev 21:23-27   

[REB: 23 The city did not need the sun or moon to shine on it,
for the glory of God gave it light, and its lamp was the Lamb.]

       The words allude to Isaiah {37}, who also speaks of the
Glory of the Lord {38} and the Holy One of Israel. {40} The new
Jerusalem is to be established with their Return from lands far
away. {40}
      "No sun or moon" means that no priestly hierarchy will be
needed in the City.  The reason is that Bahá'u'lláh, the Glory of
God, will be its light, and 'Abdu'l-Bahá, the Lamb, will be its
Lamp of Guidance.
     Isaiah tells us something else about this light:

'The moon will shine as brightly as the sun, and the sun with
seven times its wonted brightness, like seven days' light in one
....'- REB: Isaiah 30:26

     The Moon of 'Abdu'l-Bahá will shine as brightly as the Sun
of Bahá'u'lláh. The Sun of Truth will shine as brightly as seven
former Days of Creation. 
      In verse 23 the name of Bahá'u'lláh is given for the third
and final time in the Apocalypse.  John follows the ancient canon
of repeating the name three-times to emphasize his supreme
station.{41} The notion that 'thrice' implies the best or
greatest has extremely ancient roots.  Greek 'trismegistos' =
'thrice greatest.'; Latin 'ter felix' = 'thrice-happy' or
'happiest.'
      The practice of repeating three-times was, and still is
used to emphasize a prayer or sacred ritual. The formula was
adapted by practitioners of the occult arts in carrying out their
rituals and incantations. ('Third time's a charm!')  Samuel
Taylor Coleridge employed it in his masterpiece KUBLA KHAN, the
closing lines of which seem to presage the Advent of Bahá'u'lláh: 

      And all should cry, Beware! Beware!
      His flashing eyes, his floating hair!
      Weave a circle round him thrice,
           And close your eyes with holy dread,
           For he on honey-dew hath fed,
      And drunk the milk of paradise.

      A 'Night' is the period between two Divine Manifestations
when the Sun of Truth is not manifest among men.{42} In every
past Dispensation there has been such a period.  But
Bahá'u'lláh's unique Dispensation is the 'King of Days,' the 'Day
not followed by Night.'  Thus in verse 25 we find that there is
to be "no night" in the new Jerusalem.  
                          
                          CHAPTER 22- EPILOGUE


      This, the final chapter of the Apocalypse, is an epilogue
and conclusion.
     John sees the 'water of life' flowing from the Throne of
Bahá'u'lláh and 'Abdu'l-Bahá, the Lamb, just as promised by
Zechariah. On either side of the river, John sees the 'tree of
life,' the Twin Manifestation, the Bab and Bahá'u'lláh. The
'fruits' from the Twin Trees are the blessings that flow from the
12 Basic Principles on which the Sacred City is founded. The
ancient curse that caused the destruction of the physical city of
Jerusalem in past Ages will have been overcome, because the new
Jerusalem is to be a spiritual City, not prone to the capricious
forces of worldly history. Its citizens will be able to converse
'face-to-face' with God, just as Moses had done. The name of God
will be retained in the 'foreheads' of their minds, not in
physical talismans or phylacteries. 
     The Dispensation of Bahá'u'lláh will be the 'Day not
followed by Night.'
     God promises that He is 'coming soon,' that He will become
Manifest in the very next Age, and that the prophesied events
revealed to John are to commence in the very near future.
Bahá'u'lláh, the Alpha and the Omega, will come quickly bringing
deliverance and redemption.
     The chapter ends with farewells and warnings. Jesus reminds
us that he is an offshoot from David, not of the direct line of
kings. 
     Finally, John curses anyone who tampers with the written
text of the Apocalypse. 
     The last word in the Apocalypse is "Amen,"which has a
literal value of 99 and an archetypal value of 9, the Seal of
Bahá'u'lláh.


     [Several voices are heard. The King James Version (KJV) does
not include closed quotes, and the Revised English Bible (REB) is
employed for determining the probable voices.]

      Verses 1 through 5 are spoken by John.  

THE RIVER OF LIFE:

1 And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as a
crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and the Lamb. -Rev
22:1  

[REB: 1 Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life,
sparkling like crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the
Lamb]

      The verse alludes to:

"On that day, whether in summer or in winter, running water will
issue from Jerusalem, half flowing to the eastern sea and half to
the western sea." -REB: Zechariah 14:8 

     The new Jerusalem will be the source of spiritual
inspiration and guidance for all peoples, whether in the East or
in the West.  "We have caused the rivers of Divine utterance to
proceed out of Our throne, that the tender herbs of wisdom and
understanding may spring forth from the soil of your hearts." -BH
{1}  

THE TWIN HOLY TREES:

2 In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the
river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of
fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the
tree were for the healing of the nations. -Rev 22:2   

[REB: 2 down the middle of the city's street.  On either side of
the river stood a tree of life, ...]

       The two 'trees of life' are the Twin Holy Trees, the Bab
and Bahá'u'lláh. The 'twelve manner of fruits' are the blessings
flowing from the Laws and Principles that are the twelve
foundation stones upon which the City is founded.  

NO MORE CURSE:

3 And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and the
Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: -Rev 22:3  


[REB:  3 Every accursed thing shall disappear.  The throne of God
and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants shall worship
him;]

       The authority of Bahá'u'lláh, the Bab and 'Abdu'l-Bahá
will reside in the new Jerusalem.  The only true God will be
worshipped there, whose power will be manifested in the Universal
House of Justice, sitting on God's 'holy mountain.'
     'No more curse' may allude to: 

"Jerusalem will be inhabited, and never again will a ban for her
destruction be laid on her; all will live there in security." -
REB: Zechariah 14:11 

THEY SHALL SEE HIS FACE:

And they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their
foreheads. -Rev 22:4  

       To 'see his face' is an allusion to the event in Exodus
{2} in which Moses is permitted to converse with Jehovah
face-to-face.
      Bahá'u'lláh is the Manifestation of Jehovah, and is the One
who spoke with Moses on Sinai.  Thus, in the Dispensation of
Bahá'u'lláh we are permitted to see the 'face' of the Voice From
the Burning Bush.
      'In their foreheads' alludes to Revelation 14:1 in which we
are told that the twice-72 multitudes of specially endowed
working arms will have the name of the Father (Bahá'u'lláh) of
the Lamb ('Abdu'l-Bahá) written in their foreheads. {3}

NO NIGHT:

And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle,
neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and
they shall reign for ever and ever. -Rev 22:5  

       Again we are reminded that the Dispensation of Bahá'u'lláh
is the 'Day not followed by Night.'  The citizens of the new
Jerusalem will not need the services of a church or a priestly
hierarchy to guide them, since they will receive their spiritual
light and guidance directly from God through His Manifestation.  

THE LORD GOD PROMISES TO COME QUICKLY:

6 And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and
the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his
servants the things which must shortly be done.  7 Behold, I come
quickly:  blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy
of this book. -Rev 22:6-7   

[REB:  6 He said to me, 'These words are trustworthy and true.
The Lord God who inspires the prophets has sent his angel to show
his servants what soon must take place.  7 And remember, I am
coming soon!'
      Happy is the man who takes to heart the words of prophecy
contained in this book!]

       The quote is by the plague angel who spoke to John in
21:9,  15  & 22:1.  He reminds John that it is the Lord God who
has inspired the holy prophets and Manifestations of the past,
and will do so for all the Ages to come.  When the plague angel
speaks the words "I am coming soon!", he is speaking as the
Messenger of God, Who reassures John that God will manifest
Himself very soon. Indeed, He did so in the human Temple of
Muhammad about five centuries after the Revelation.  

DON'T WORSHIP THE MESSENGER!

8 And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had
heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the
angel which shewed me these things.  9 Then saith he unto me, See
thou do it not:  for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren
the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: 
worship God. -Rev 22:8-9   

[REB: 8 It was I, John, who heard and saw these things.  When I
had heard them, I prostrated myself to worship the angel who had
shown them to me.  9 But he said, 'You must not do that!  I am a
fellow-servant with you and your brothers the prophets and with
those who take to heart the words of this book.  It is God you
must worship.']

        Once again, John is warned against worshipping the
Messenger instead of the Originator of the Message.  When a
Divine Messenger speaks in the first person FOR God, this does
not equate him WITH God.  Christians are especially prone to this
error, although the devotees of all Divinely revealed Faiths
commit the fallacy to various degrees. {4}

And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of
this book: for the time is at hand. -Rev 22:10  

       The Apocalypse is a prophecy of events that will commence
very shortly. Indeed, the first great persecution of Christians
prophesied in 8:7-9 began less than a decade after the Revelation
to John, but the Advent of Bahá'u'lláh would not occur until
after another eighteen lunar centuries. {5}

He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is
filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let
him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy
still. -Rev 22:11  

       The verse reminds us of the prophecy of Daniel: 

"Many will purify themselves and be refined, making themselves
shining white, but the wicked will continue in wickedness and
none of them will understand:  only the wise leaders will
understand." -REB: Daniel 12:10 
      
THE ALPHA AND OMEGA GIVES A FAREWELL AND A PROMISE:

12 And behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give
every man according as his work shall be.  13 I am Alpha and
Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. -Rev
22:12   

[REB:       12  'I am coming soon, and bringing with me my
recompense to repay everyone according to what he has done!  13 I
am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning
and the end.']

       Spoken by the plague angel for Bahá'u'lláh.  The 'reward'
alludes to:  

"This is the Lord's [Jehovah's] proclamation to earth's farthest
bounds: Tell the daughter of Zion 'See, your deliverance comes. 
His reward is with him,  his recompense before him.' " -REB:
Isaiah 62:11

      The title 'the Alpha and the Omega' is equated with the
'first and the last' {8} and 'the beginning and the end.'
      'The Alpha and the Omega' is unique to the Apocalypse.  It
occurs a total of three-times in modern translations {6}, as does
the title 'the Glory of God.'  Its uniqueness suggests that its
numerology should be investigated.  Doing so reveals that it has
an archetypal value of 9, the literal value of Bahá' and the Seal
of Bahá'u'lláh.
      The title 'the first and the last' occurs in Isaiah {7}
where it is equated with (REB) 'the Lord [Jehovah], Israel's
King, the Lord of Hosts, his Redeemer.' Isaiah also declares that
error-free prophecy is one proof of the validity of Divine
inspiration.

THE SAVED AND THE DAMNED:

14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have
right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates of
the city. -Rev 22:14   

[REB: 14 Happy are those who wash their robes clean!  They shall
be free to eat from the tree of life ...]

       The Tree of Life is the Manifestation of God.  "Through
His potency the Trees of Divine Revelation have yielded their
fruits, every one of which hath been sent down in the form of a
Prophet, bearing a Message to God's creatures in each of the
worlds whose number God alone, in His all-encompassing knowledge,
can reckon."  -BH {10}

For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and
murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
-Rev 22:15   

    Spoken by John. This list of the damned should be compared to
that of 21:8.  Apparently 'dogs' include the fearful, the
unbelieving, and the abominable.  

"Do not give dogs what is holy; do not throw your pearls to pigs: 
they will only trample on them, and turn and tear you to pieces."
-REB: Matt 7:6  

JESUS BIDS FAREWELL:

16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things
in the churches.  I am the root and the offspring of David, and
the bright and morning star. -Rev 22:16   

[REB: 16  'I, Jesus, have sent my angel to you with this
testimony for the churches. I am the offspring of David, the
shoot growing from his stock, the bright star of dawn.']       

     Probably spoken by the first angel (verse 1:1). His
testimony is to the Seven Churches of Asia.  Jesus affirms that
he is the 'root' of David, that is, the 'Ancient Root,' and
therefore is a Manifestation of God. In addition, he claims to be
the 'offspring of David,' though apparently not of the direct
line of historic kings.  Jesus also claims to be the 'bright star
of dawn,' that is, the 'Herald' of a new day of God. {11}
      It is noteworthy that, once again, Jesus fails to claim the
WORLDLY Throne of David, although many of his devotees must have
considered him eligible for that position. Indeed, we now know
the reason why Jesus did not claim the Worldly Throne of David.
The fact that he was an 'offspring of David' automatically
interdicted any claim that he might have had to that Throne. {16}
But being an 'offspring of David' did not preclude his being the
Messiah sitting on a SPIRITUAL Throne. Recall  

...... [Pilate asks] 'So you are the king of the Jews?'.... Jesus
replied, 'My kingdom does not belong to this world. If it did, my
followers would be fighting to save me from the clutches of the
Jews. My kingdom belongs elsewhere.' -REB: John 18:33-36

       [The New International Version begins a new paragraph at
this point.]

JOHN'S CURSE:

And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth
say, Come.  And let him that is athirst, come.  And whosoever
will, let him take the water of life freely.  18 For I testify
unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this
book, if any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto
him the plagues that are written in this book:  19 And if any man
shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy,  God
shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the
holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. -
Rev 22:17-18   

[REB: 18  I, John, give this warning to everyone who is listening
to the words of prophecy in this book:  if anyone adds to them,
God will add to him the plagues described in this book;  19 if
anyone takes away from the words in this book of prophecy, God
will take away from him his share in the tree of life and in the
Holy City, which are described in this book.]

       Perhaps Jesus should have had the last word at verse 16,
but John addends a curse on those who would corrupt the text of
the Apocalypse.  It is noteworthy that John would have felt the
need to do so, and it implies that corruption of the Word was not
a rare occurrence in the early Christian Church.
      Indeed, corruption of the Word created the great whore of
Babylon that has plagued Christendom during the Piscean Age,
whose offspring is the mayhem that we now observe among the
thousands of Christian sects.  As archaeologists and antiquarians
discover more pristine versions of Sacred Texts, the extent to
which corruption has taken place will become more evident. One
proven case is the Gospel of Mark.  Although it is considered by
biblical scholars to be the most reliable of the Gospels,
nevertheless it is known to have had about twelve-and-a-half
verses addended, and there may have been other alterations.  The
corruption of the Sacred Texts resulted in several hundred years
of trial-and-error before a canon of New Testament works could be
accepted by a significant body of Christians, and even today the
debate goes on.
      It is always tempting to a scribe or a translator to alter
or add a word, a phrase or a verse to bring it more in line with
his own concepts or those of humanly limited theologians and
commentators.  At other times, alterations may be accidental or
even unconscious.  It is probably because the Apocalypse is so
cryptic that it has remained relatively free of such distortions.
Candidly, no one knew where or how to alter the text. {12}
      Most of the alterations of the text of the Apocalypse are
relatively benign, but there is one significant exception. An
early version of the Apocalypse altered the number of the beast
of the Apocalypse from 666 to 616, apparently to make the value
equal to that of 'Nero Caesar,' {13} a blue ribbon villain that
many early Christians considered to be the anti-Christ.  

20 He which testifieth these things saith,  Surely I come
quickly.  Amen. Even so, come Lord Jesus. -Rev 22:20   


[REB:  20 He who gives this testimony says: 'Yes, I am coming
soon!'       Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!]  

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be unto you all. Amen. -Rev
22:21     

     If not with Jesus' testimony at verse 16, the Revelation
should certainly have ended with John's curse, but part of verse
20 and all of 21 seem to have been addended. {14} The addendum
reflects the ardent hope among the early Christians that Jesus
would return in the flesh to establish the Kingdom of God during
their own lifetimes.  
       It is here that another great secret of the Apocalypse
becomes evident! The last word of the Apocalypse is 'Amen,'
whether or not we decide that the Apocalypse has been addended
after John's curse. At several places in the Apocalypse we have
been advised to consider 'the Alpha and the Omega.' Finally, at
22:13 we are advised to look at the 'beginning and the end, the
first and the last.'  And what are the first and last words of
the Apocalypse? The first word is 'Apocalypse,' the last word is
'Amen.'
      The first word 'Apocalypse' has a literal value of 1512
which has an archetypal value of 9.  The last word 'Amen' has a
literal value of 99, which also has an archetypal value of 9.     
     'The Alpha and the Omega' appears three or four times,
depending upon the version. {15} The expression has either the
value 801 or 1332, also depending upon the version.  In all
cases, the archetypal value is 9, the number of Bahá' and the
Seal of Bahá'u'lláh!  
                    
                    APPENDIX A: SOME NUMBER SYMBOLISM


     This Appendix describes some numerological discoveries.
Surely many more remain to be discovered. The definitions of
terms used can be found in the INTRODUCTION.

SOME SUBJECTS THAT HAVE AN ARCHETYPAL VALUE OF NINE:

SUBJECT = LITERAL VALUE = ARCHETYPAL VALUE; [WHERE FOUND] 

Greek Words and Phrases:

Apocalypse (First word) = 1512 = 9; [Title, 1:1]
Amen (Last word= 22:20 or 22:21) = 99 = 9; [1:6, 1:7, 1:18, 3:14,
     5:14, 7:12, 7:12, 19:4, 22:20, 22:21(?)]
'Alpha + Omega' ('First and Last') =  801 = 9; [1:8, 1:11(?),
     21:6; 22:13]
'Alpha (spelled out {1}) + Omega' = 1332 (twice-666) = 9
'Faithful and True' (name) = 1269 = 9; [19:11]
'The Word of God' (name) = 927 = 9; [19:13]
Glory (Greek for 'Kabowd') = 135 = 9; [4:9, 4:11, 14:7, 15:4,
     16:9,  19:1]
'New Name' = 432 = 9; [2:17, 3:12]
Jerusalem = 864 (twice-432) = 9; [3:12, 21:2, 21:10]
'The Glory of God of Israel' = 1746 = 9; [Ezekiel 8:4, 9:3,
     10:19, 11:22, 43:2]
'A grain of mustard seed' = 1746 = 9; [Mat 13:31, 17:20; Mark
     4:31; Luke 13:19, 17:6] 


Numbers:

666 (a sacred number!) = 666 = 9; [13:18]
144 (twice-72) = 144 = 9; [21:17]
144,000 = 144,000 = 9; [7:4, 14:1, 14:3]
1260 (3 1/2 'times') = 1260 = 9; [11:2, 11:3, 11:9, 11:11, 12:6,
     12:14, 13:5]

Items:

Fishes in the net = 153 = 9; [John 21:11]
Stanzas in THE HIDDEN WORDS = 153 = 9
Parameters of the New Jerusalem = (various) = seven cases of 9
     [21:16, 21:17]

Other:

The Almighty (Pantocrator) appears 9 times; [1:8, 4:8, 11:17,
     15:3, 16:7, 16:14, 19:6, 19:15, 21:22] 

SOME OTHER INTERESTING VALUES:

Glory of God (Greek) = 1389 = 3; [15:8, 21:11, 21:23]
Bahá'u'lláh (Arabic) = 75 = 3
'Nine' (Greek word) = 111 = 3

Messiah (Hebrew) = 358 = 7; [Dan 9:25, 9:26]
'Shiloh Come' (Hebrew) = 358 = 7; [Gen 49:10]

Jesus (Greek) = 888 = 6; [14:12, 17:6, 19:10, 19:10, 20:4, 22:16,
     22:20(?)]
Christ (Greek) = 1480 = 4; [11:15, 12.10, 20.4, 20.6]
Jesus Christ (Greek) = 2368 = 1; [1:1, 1:2, 1:5, 1:9, 12:17,
     22:21(?)]
Last sentence of Chapter 13 = 2368 = 1; [13:18]
Son of Man (Greek) = 2260 = 1; [1:13, 14:14]
Son of God (Greek) = 1934 = 8; [2:18]


TRIANGULAR VALUES:

     The name 'Bahá'' is an Arabic word spelled Be, ha, alif,
hamza (BHA'). The numerical values of the letters are 2, 5, 1, 1
{2}. Thus the literal value of Bahá' is 9. The triangular value
of 9 is 45, the same as the literal value of 'Adam.' The word
'Bab' is spelled Be, alif, beh (BAB), which has a literal value
of 5. The triangular value of 5 is 15, the same as the literal
value of 'Eve.' Thus the two traditional names Adam and Eve,
God's first two spiritual creations, are linked with the Twin
Manifestation whose appearance was promised at the Last Day.

KLIMA:

     It seems appropriate to apply klima as we did for YHWH.
Expanding the word 'BAB' by klima:

     B              Sum = 2
     BA             Sum = 3
     BAB            Sum = 5

produces a total of (2 + 3 + 5) = 10, the value of the Y (Yod),
the first letter in YHWH. The literal value of BAB, being 5,
equals the value of the H (Hay), the last letter in YHWH. Thus
the word 'BAB', which literally means 'the Gate,' is an
expression of the 'first and the last.'
     Expanding 'BHA'':

     B              Sum = 2
     BH             Sum = 7
     BHA            Sum = 8
     BHA'           Sum = 9

     The sum of (2 + 7 + 8 + 9) is 26, the literal value of YHWH.
Thus we find the occult connection between BHA' and YHWH. 
     The word Bahá' (BHA') is loosely translated into English as
'Glory.' More accurately, it is equivalent to the Hebrew word
'Kabowd,' a 'palpable manifestation.'  The word 'Kabowd' is
translated into Greek (again loosely) as 'Doxa.' We have noted
several occult uses of the words 'Kabowd' and 'Doxa' in the
Bible. 
     Jewish mystics knew the significance of the letters 'B' and
'H.' They attached much importance to them and wrote commentaries
about these letters.
     There is a Jewish legend that says that Solomon's Seal,
considered a powerful talisman by the ancients, carried the
Greatest Name, possibly the 'Kabowd' of 'El'.
     In the Buddhist Scriptures, the word 'BHA' occasionally
appears, occultly disjointed from the adjacent Sanskrit Text.
                                  NOTES


NOTES TO INTRODUCTION

{1} BAHA'I SCRIPTURES, Sect 92.

{2} The 'Quadratura Circuli.' See Carl Jung, PSYCHOLOGY AND
     RELIGION

{3} The four elements + ether. See Ecclesiasticus 17:5.

{4} Appel and Haken, THE SOLUTION OF THE FOUR-COLOR-MAP PROBLEM,
     Scientific American, Oct, 1977 

{5} Aristotle, DE CAEOLO

{6} Gen 7:2-3

{7} Gen 29

{8} 1 Sam 6:1

{9} Jer 25:11, 2910

{10} See Ps 90:4


NOTES TO CHAPTER 1

{1} The 'Prophetic Cycle' began with the Dispensation of the
     Prophet Adam and ended with the Dispensation of Muhammad,
     the 'Seal of the Prophets.' The Advent of the Bab closed the
     Prophetic Cycle and opened the Age of Fulfillment. The
     'Bahá'í Cycle' initiated by Bahá'u'lláh will consist of
     numerous Ages spanning a period of, perhaps, 500-thousand-
     years. 

{2} From a letter written on behalf of the Universal House of
     Justice to an individual believer, Aug 7, 1978. 'The Master'
     was a title bestowed by Bahá'u'lláh, upon his son, 'Abdu'l-
     Bahá.

{3} See Romans 1:2

{4} Matthew 8:22

{5} GWB, p 101

{6} Matt 13:14-19,  24:15; John 9:39; Acts 28:26-27; Cf. Is
     6:9-10 

{7} BOC, pp 192-6

{8} Isaiah 60:1-3;  Luke 17:22-25

{9} TTJ; PT, p 51; SAQ, p 254; WAB, p 13; GPB, p 95

{10} GPB, p 95

{11} Isaiah 44:6 

{12} Is 41:4,  14,  44:6,  47:4,  48:12,  59:19-21; Ps 24:7-10;
     Job 19:25;  Jer 23:5-8. Cf. GPB, pp 93-99 

{13} GWB, p 168

{14} In the original version of THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED, I chose
     Justice as the symbolism of Parchment, and Harmony as the
     symbolism of Just People. Either way works, since Law is
     usually associated with Justice, and Justice is essential
     for generating Harmony.

{15} 'Thya' means a sandarac tree, a close relative of the
     cypress. The candle-shaped cypress was the emblem of Ormazd
     and Zoroaster. Ormazd was the name given to the God of
     Goodness and Spiritual Light.

{16} H. Smith, THE RELIGIONS OF MAN, is a popular treatment.

{17} WOB p 104

{18} WOB, p 104; GPB, p 169.  As was the custom in that region,
     Bahá'u'lláh had dyed his hair and beard a jet black before
     his interview with Prof E.G. Browne in 1890. See Ustad
     Muhammad-'Aliy-i Salmani, (tr. Marzieh Gail), MY MEMORIES OF
     BAHA'U'LLAH, Kalimat Press, Los Angeles, 1982; H.M. Balyuzi,
     BAHA'U'LLAH, THE KING OF GLORY, George Ronald, Oxford, 1980,
     p.240

{19} Dan 2:32

{20} GWB, p 167

{21} Daniel 7:9, 13-14

{22} GWB, p 296

{23} GWB, p 104

{24} GWB pp 45, 183; WOB, p.104


NOTES TO CHAPTER 2

{1} GWB, pp 179, 185

{2} WOB, p 115}

{3} Possibly mentioned in Acts 6:5.

{4} Cf. Gen 2

{5} The difficulties for Israel ensuing from the worship of Baal
     are recorded in 1st and 2nd Kings.

{6} GWB, p 195

{7} 'Thyine' means 'fragrant.' Cf. Rev 18:12 in KJV.

{8} The subject is further elucidated in Romans 1:3-4 and Hebrews
     1:4-6.

{9} GWB, p 325.

{10} TAB, pp 92-4


NOTES TO CHAPTER 3

{1} GWB pp 332, 323.

{2} GWB, p 132

{3} BOL;  GWB, pp 269-270.

{4} That is, (8 + 6 + 4) = 18. Continuing, (1 + 8) = 9. Note that
     432 is just one-half of 864.

{5} In THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED, I proposed that Bahá'u'lláh was
     the one who "stands at the door and knocks." In revisiting
     the matter, it seems more likely, in the context of previous
     verses, that it is Muhammad.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 4

{1} Every astrological age actually has a double name, e.g.
     ARIES-Libra and AQUARIUS-Leo. The double name
     comes from the names of the stellar constellations or
     'signs' where the sun rises at both the SPRING and Fall
     seasons of the year. This should become clearer in later
     verses. See the INTRODUCTION. I recommend de Santillana et
     al, HAMLET'S MILL.        

{2} SAQ, pp 284-6      

{3} With very little search, I found these twelves in less
     exalted circles: 12 Olympian deities, 12 Titans, 12 knights
     of King Arthur's round table, 12 merry men of Robin Hood,
     and 12 Caesars in the canon of Seutonius. I'm sure that the
     list is quite extensive.      

{4} What are the names of the 24 Elders seated around the throne
     of Bahá'u'lláh? I have been able to locate only 20 that are
     authenticated: the Bab, the 18 Letters of the Living, and
     Haji Mirza Muhammad-Taqi. The names of the other 4 may be
     laying undiscovered in the Bahá'í archives, or may require a
     decision by the Universal House of Justice. In the meantime,
     I personally consider these exalted names as probable: Mirza
     Mihdi (the Purest Branch), 'Abdu'l-Bahá' (the Servant of
     Bahá'), Shoghi Effendi (the Guardian), and Bahiyyih Khanum
     (the Greatest Holy Leaf).

{5} AB, SAQ, p 71

{6} GWB, p 104

{7} BH: TAF. See commentary after Rev 1:12.

{8} BOC, pp 100, 103;  GWB, p 258 


NOTES TO CHAPTER 5

{1} The REB is at variance with the KJV and the NIV. The REB
     reads: 'Do not weep; for the Lion from the tribe of Judah,
     the shoot growing from David's stock, has won the right to
     open the scroll and break its seven seals.' The word in KJV
     v. 5 is actually Greek 'Rhiza', a 'Root.' 
 
{2} Ez 19:4

{3} 2 Kings 25:7

{4} The line of David is given in Ruth 4:18. Bahá'u'lláh is
     descended from Abraham through his third wife Keturah.

{5} 2 Kings 21:2-7. The Ark of the Covenant disappeared at about
     the same time. See Graham Hancock, THE SIGN AND THE SEAL. 

{6} Jer 15:4,  36:30. The genetic root of David is given in Ruth
     4:18-20. His throne was passed down from son to son until
     Jehoiakim. But by the dictum of the prophet Jeremiah,     
     the reign of Jehoiakim's son was aborted. Instead, his 
     brother Mattaniah-Zedekiah was appointed king by       
     Nebuchadnezzar. (2 Kings 24:17) Even this branch was   
     terminated by Nebuchadnezzar. (2 Kings 25:7) Apparently,    
     with the demise of Jehoiakim, there were no further    
     legitimate claimants to the worldly Throne of David from  
     the direct line of David. 

{7} Ps (REB) 132:17

{8} Matthew 22:42-45; Mark 12:35-37; Luke 20:41. Jesus is
     referring to Psalm 110.

{9} in TTJ;  PDC, pp 78-79;  GPB, p 230

{10} 1 Sam 16:1;  Heb 5:4-5, 7:3, 15. Also see Is 11;  Is 63:10; 
     Zech 12:7.

{11} John 18:36

{12} Gen 49:10

{13} See Rev 4:1

{14} The word 'Edom' means 'Red.' When Bahá'u''lah was later
     exiled to the Holy Land, the region of Edom was a part of 
     'Transjordan,' literally, 'the land beyond the Jordan
     river.' Basrah is a city in modern Iraq.

{15} To be explained in a later chapter.

{16} See INTRODUCTION.

{17} The Bab also plays a special role in the Book of Daniel, as
     can be seen by a careful reading of Daniel 10. This chapter
     of Daniel and others is discussed in I, DANIEL.

{18} BOC, p 164

{19} GWB, pp 244-5    

{20} E.g., BOL and CB. See GPB, pp 239, 242.

{21} Genesis 2:9. In WOB, p 135, Bahá'u'lláh refers to 'Abdu'l-
     Bahá as the Branch from the Sadratu'l-Muntaha. In BOL, see
     paragraphs 100, 148, and Notes 128, 164.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 6

{1} Ps 114:7;  1 Chron 16:29-34; Joel 3:16;  Amos 8:8;  Is 13:13, 
     14:16;  Hag 2:6-7;  Heb 12:26-27

{2} Amos 8:9;  Is 13:10,  60:19-20,  14:12;  Ezek 32:7-8;  Job
     38:7;  Num 24:17;  Joel 2:31,  3:15;  Acts 2:20;  Jude 1:13;
     Matt 24:29;  Obad 1:4;  Gen 37:9-11      

{3} Is 34:4;  Matt 24:29-30      

{4} Ps 114:4;  Is 14:25-26, 2:2-3,  40:4,  65:23-25;  Jer 48:8; 
     Micah 1:3-4;  Luke 23:30;  3:4-5;  Dan 2;  John 4:21  

{5} Ps 18:2;  Deut 32:4,  30,  31       

{6} BOC, pp 33-34, 36, 37, 38, 41

{7} GWB, pp 44-45  


NOTES TO CHAPTER 7

{1} GWB, p 68

{2} GWB, p 68

{3} GWB, pp 331, 198, 218

{4} Gen 49. See Introduction.

{5} I.e., (1 + 4 + 4) = 9

{6} Rev 4:4

{7} Numbers 11:25-26

{8} See Introduction.

{9} See Introduction.

{10} See Martin Gardner, THE COLORING OF UNUSUAL MAPS LEADS INTO
     UNCHARTED TERRITORY; also Appel and Haken, THE SOLUTION OF
     THE FOUR-COLOR-MAP PROBLEM.

{11} Gen 49. See Introduction.

{12}  The history of the zodiac is obscure, but it seems likely
     that Gemini was originally the first sign of the zodiac. If
     so, the zodiac was devised at least four astrological Ages
     ago, circa 6-millennia BCE.      Some astrologers have
     suggested that the Cain-Abel myth may have been created
     during the Age of Gemini. An interesting theory! Then
     perhaps Cain was the star that announced the harvesting
     season (Genesis 4:3) and 'murdered' his brother when the
     Precession caused him to replace Abel, the star that
     announced the sheep birthing season (4:4). But, eventually,
     the Precession also caused Cain to lose his position in the
     sky (4:11). Thereafter, Cain became a 'wanderer' or 'planet'
     (4:13), no longer indicative of either the harvesting or the
     birthing season. His star was forced 'east of Eden' (4:16)
     during the Age of Taurus.

{13} Matt 19:28; Luke 22:30

{14} Rev 21:14

{15} Luke 6:12

{16} Mark 3:17

{17} John (REB) 13:21-30

{18} GWB, pp. 169, 213

{19} GWB, p. 189

{20} PMB, pp. 83-4

{21} Zech 11:7-14 (REB):  "So I became a shepherd to the flock
     destined to be slaughtered by the dealers. ...  I had lost
     patience with the flock and they had come to abhor me... 'I
     shall not be a shepherd to you any more..'  I took my staff
     called Favor and snapped it in two, annulling the covenant
     which the Lord had made with all nations ... . Then they
     weighed out my wages, thirty pieces of silver... Then I
     broke in two my second staff called Union, annulling the
     brotherhood between Judah and Israel. "      Curiously,
     Bahá'u'lláh was born on November 12, 1817. By conventional
     pre-Piscean astrology, Bahá'u'lláh would have been born
     under the sign of Scorpio. But by the new astrology of the
     Apocalypse, Bahá'u'lláh was born under the sign of Flying
     Eagle.

{22} See Nabil's Narrative (THE DAWN-BREAKERS).

{23} See Lady Blomfield, THE CHOSEN HIGHWAY.

{24} Another proof can be found in THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED, 
     Figure 16.     Gad-Asher (ARIES-LIBRA) may represent the 
     heroic age of Israel. See 1 Chronicles 7:40 and 12:14.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 8

{1} GWB, p 316

{2} SAQ, p 71

{3} Christians were also under attack from the Jews during the
     persecutions by Rome. Probably in response to Jesus' warning
     (Matt 24:15-6), at the sight of Titus' army coming to take
     Jerusalem in 70 CE, the Christians in and around Jerusalem
     fled across the Jordan river to Pella. This act of seeming
     desertion angered the surviving Jews, who, after the Fall of
     Jerusalem, carried out a campaign of terror against the
     Christians. The Christians responded in kind, and this
     internecine struggle lasted until Caliph Umar I conquered
     Jerusalem in 637.

{4} SAQ, p 66 

{5} GWB, pp 21,  41

{6} The Bab: SWB, p 129 fn


NOTES TO CHAPTER 9

{1}  The Sunni caliphate was abolished in 1924 in the wake of the
     successful revolution in Turkey under Kemel Ataturk. The
     date of the destruction of the caliphate was 27 sabbatic
     years after the Crucifixion. A 'sabbatic year' = 7-decades. 
     I place the date of the Crucifixion at 34 CE in accord with 
     the prophecy in Daniel 9:26.

{2} SAQ, p 60

{3} GWB, p 43

{4} Qur'an: 42:11,  46:11,  73:15

{5} at 3:10.

{6} at 11:13 and 14:7.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 10

{1} Rev 1:7, 4:3, 1:16

{2} 1 Kings 7:21;  2 Chron 3:15

{3} Exod 13:21

{4} Ruth 4:21

{5} Is 11:1, 10

{6} I.e., (7 + 2) = 9


NOTES TO CHAPTER 11

{1} Most of what follows is explained by 'Abdu'l-Bahá in SAQ,
     Chapter 11.

{2} 'AH' means 'After the Hegira,' the starting point of the
     Muslim calendar. The Hegira occurred in 622 CE. A lunar year
     is 354.367 days long. There are 1.03069 lunar years in a
     solar year of 365.242 days.

{3} Exodus 7

{4} Ex 9:33

{5} Ex 4:9

{6} Ex 4:21

{7}  'Kyrios' was His most popular title, implying that many
     early believers considered Jesus to be a mystery deity. See
     Rudolf Bultmann, PRIMITIVE CHRISTIANITY IN ITS CONTEMPORARY
     SETTING.

{8} Is 45:1

{9} PMB, p 68. See also PUP, p 444.

{10} Some believe that the physical Ark is preserved in a
     sanctuary at Axum, Ethiopia. See Graham Hancock,  THE SIGN
     AND THE SEAL. 

{11} Dan 10:13, 21, 12:1;  Rev 12:7

{12} See Chapter 1, Note 1.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 12

{1} Much of this chapter has been explained by 'Abdu'l-Bahá in
     SAQ, Chapter 13.

{2} REB: Gen 49:17

{3} Dan 12:1

{4} Dan 7:25 and 12:7. This is just one-half of the 7 'times'
     specified in Daniel 4:23. The starting point of the 7 times
     is discovered by correlating Daniel 2:1 with 4:29. The
     result is 3 years after Nebuchadnezzar came to power. This
     becomes 3 years after the year 605 BCE, or 602 BCE.          
 
     Seven times are 2520 lunar years, or 2445 solar years.      
     Accounting for the fact that there is no zeroth year in the
     common calendar, the seven times brings us to (2445 - 602 +
     1) = 1844 CE.     The Book of Daniel deals primarily with
     the first half of the 7 times; the Apocalypse deals
     primarily with the second half.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 13

{1} Commemorated in the fable ARABIAN NIGHTS.

{2} Dan 7

{3} See Dan 4:30.

{4} 'Abdu'l-Bahá is the 'Branch' of Isaiah 11:1 (KJV).

{5} 'The Sultan' means 'The Sovereign.'

{6} The 'Abbasids ended their career controlling only the
     dominion surrounding Baghdad, approximately the region of
     ancient Babylonia.

{7}  Jesus is said to have been born at One AD, not Zero AD.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 14

{1} GPB, p 243

{2} GWB, p 13 

{3} WOB, pp 103-104;  GPB, pp 94-96

{4} WOB, p 111

{5}  The archetypal value of 144 'thousands' is 9. That is: 
     (1 + 4 + 4 + 0 + 0 + 0) = 9.

{6} At this point, it is worthwhile to consider the angels who
     deliver the various messages to John. Recall that
     'Abdu'l-Bahá has informed us that there are many meanings to
     each word of the Apocalypse. In my opinion, there are
     meanings latent in the numbers, messages, and ordering of
     the angels beyond those already discerned. In the case of
     the six angels who are presented in this chapter, it seems
     to me that they probably represent the Mediators who
     prophesied the coming of Bahá'u'lláh, the Divine Reaper.
     These were Krishna, Zoroaster, Gautama Buddha, Jesus and
     Muhammad. The Bab is a sixth Mediator who is a part of that
     Judgement, and who also warned us of the Advent of "One Whom
     God will make Manifest," Bahá'u'lláh.           Three
     mediating angels have already appeared in this chapter. At
     verse 6 we find an angel preaching the 'everlasting gospel,'
     while at verse 8, we find one announcing the fall of the
     'city' of the corrupted Word of God. The clues are scanty,
     and the conclusions correspondingly tenuous, but the wording
     of the two verses indicate to me that the first angel is
     probably Lord Krishna, who preached extensively of recurring
     Avatars, while the second angel probably represents the
     Great Reformer, Lord Buddha.     In verses 9-11 the clues
     are more ample. Chapters 11, 12, and 13 offer extensive and
     credible evidence that the third angel is probably Muhammad.

{7} Genesis 11:9

{8} BOC,  pp 84-90

{9} GWB, pp 14, 40-42;  BOC, pp 76-77

{10} TSV, pp 4, 36-37

{11} and RSV: Daniel 7:13. (The REB translates Dan 7:13 and Rev
     1:13 as 'one like a human being.') In the RSV Daniel, the
     one like the Son of Man is introduced to the Ancient of
     Days; but the Ancient of Days has characteristics resembling
     the one like the Son of Man in Rev 11:13! The seeming
     paradox can be resolved by the concept of different
     spiritual worlds as revealed by Bahá'u'lláh in his TABLET OF
     ALL FOOD. Daniel is witnessing the world of Lahut; John is
     witnessing the world of Jabarut.

{12} Without spirituality, man has no meaningful history. A human
     world totally devoid of spirituality would decay to the
     level of the brute, and history would cease.

{13} Matt 21:33-41

{14} Matthew 16:27

{15} In WOB, p 104, Bahá'u'lláh speaks with the VOICE of the Son
     of Man; this Tablet could be interpreted as meaning that He
     does not actually claim the title, but does claim the
     'voice.'

{16} Is 11

{17} In THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED, I suggested that the altar angel
     was probably Jesus Christ. The whole subject of the
     identities and symbolism of the various angels in the
     Apocalypse deserves more study by some enterprising scholar.

{18} That is, (1 + 6 + 0 + 0) equals 7.

{19} Micah 4:10;  Ez 1:1,  28,  43:1-4;  Zec 4.  Cf. Ezra 5:2 &
     Zech 4:9. [The river Chebar or Kabar empties into the
     Euphrates at Babylon. 'Zerubabel' means 'Banished in
     Babylon.']


NOTES TO CHAPTER 15

{1}  GWB, p 270

{2} Isaiah 11

{3} The Ka'bih at Mecca is also a tent in the shape of a perfect
     cube.      Plato in his TIMAEUS ascribed a cubical shape to
     the 'element earth.'     The 4 fabrics of the Tabernacle and
     the priestly garment may have symbolized the 4 elements of
     fire, air, earth and water (Muller, HISTORY OF JEWISH
     MYSTICISM, p 14).     In his TOPIGRAPHICA CHRISTIANA, the
     6th century monk Cosmas likened the earth to the Tabernacle
     except on a greatly enlarged scale; the ground corresponded
     to the floor, the sky to its walls and ceiling. 

{4} GWB, pp 47, 311

{5} BOC, p 76

{6} Also 1 Kings 8:11


NOTES TO CHAPTER 16

{1} E.g., Lord Curzon, PERSIA AND THE PERSIAN QUESTION.

{2} The Civilizing Hero is called the 'God incarnate in man' by
     Arnold J. Toynbee and the 'Hero with a thousand faces' by
     Joseph Campbell.

{3} GWB, pp 151, 29; PMB, p 42; Qur'an 39:65-70

{4} There would be only three 'Kings of the East':  Bahá'u'lláh,
     'Abdu'l-Bahá and Shoghi Effendi.

{5} Exodus 8

{6} Ex 8:7

{7} Matt 24:42-44;  Luke 12:39-40;  Rev 3:3.

{8} E.g., Is 35:2,  41:2:  Jer 49:38;  Ez 43:2; Hosea 2:15; Micah
     7:12-15;  Matt 24:3, 27, 36. In these prophecies, Assyria
     included old Babylonia, etc.; Elam was a region included in
     Persia;  'Achor' literally means 'trouble,' an occult name
     for modern 'Akka.

{9} SE: TPDIC, p 117 

{10} GWB, p 39

{11} GWB, pp 198, 40, 136

{12} Matt 16:27


NOTES TO CHAPTER 17

{1} GWB, p 18)   

{2} In THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED published in 1981, I proposed
     Alexander's empire as the beast that 'was, is not, yet is.'
     Based on the analysis of A.J. Toynbee in his monumental A
     STUDY OF HISTORY, I have decided that the Persian empire is
     the correct solution to the riddle.

{3} From the date of the Apocalypse, circa 104 CE, until the
     beginning of Muhammad's Dispensation:  Syria-Palestine was
     dominated by Romans, Persians and Byzantines.   Arabia was
     dominated by Romans, Byzantines, Abyssinians and Persians.  
     Egypt was dominated by Romans and Byzantines.   Libya was
     dominated by Romans, Vandals, and Byzantines.   Spain was
     dominated by Romans, Vandals, Visigoths and Byzantines.  
     West Turkestan, later to become Transoxania, remained an
     amorphous region dominated in turn by various invaders.  
     Only Persia, under the Seleucid, Parthian and Sasanid
     dynasties, remained sovereign.

{4} If one counts only the mainstream Caliphs, there were also 10
     un-repeated names of chiefs of the Seljuk dynasty that
     seized power from the 'Abbasids. See commentary, Rev 13:13-
     14.

{5} In Rev 17:14, we find the epithet 'Lord of lords, and King of
     kings.'  In Rev 19:16 we find the epithet capitalized and 
     reversed: KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. The reversing of
     the epithet suggests that the 'Lamb' of 17:14 is not the 
     same Figure as 'Faithful and True' of verse 19:16.  In fact,
     17:14 refers to the Bab while 19:16 refers to Bahá'u'lláh. 
     Collectively, they are the 'Twin Manifestation.' See A NOTE 
     CONCERNING TITLES in the INTRODUCTION.

{6} TOA;  GWB, pp 77, 292, 145.  The Bab is Lord of Lords, and
     King of Kings- BOC:  pp 123-4


NOTES TO CHAPTER 18

{1} GWB, pp 339-40, 181, 321

{2} Isaiah 47

{3} Luke 17:2

{4} As in the ancient Islandic legend of 'Amlodhi's Mill.' See de
     Santillana et al, HAMLET'S MILL.

{5} Jer 25:10

{6} Jer 51:58-64


NOTES TO CHAPTER 19

{1} Cf. Isaiah 47 & 54

{2} Matthew 22:1-13. Repeated with variations in Luke 14:16-24.

{3} Gen 37:31-33

{4} BWF, p 47

{5} All caps to indicate that he rules over the other Kings of
     kings, and Lords of lords.

{6} BOL, p 49;  GPB, p 206. Bahá'u'lláh was given the title 'Lord
     of Lords' by the Bab in the Persian Bayan: GPB, p 94.

{7} Matthew 22:12

{8} NEB: Matthew 22:14

{9} See A NOTE CONCERNING TITLES in the INTODUCTION.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 20

{1} This sequence differs slightly from that proposed in THE
     APOCALYPSE UNSEALED.

{2}  See commentary Rev 5:5.

{3} John 3:7

{4} The resurrections that occurred during the Piscean Age were
     apparently suppressed and minimized by satanic forces.  Both
     Jesus and Muhammad prophesied that the Great Resurrection
     would occur but at a time known only to God.  See, e.g., 
     Luke 14:14;  Matthew 24:36;  Qur'an 99:2, 27:66-67.

{5} BOC, p 118; Qur'an 7:178
 
{6} Ez 38

{7} ROM, p 50

{8} Ez 38:8

{9} Ez 38:12

{10} Rev 20:9;  Ez 38:21-23

{11} Qur'an 21:96

{12} Qur'an 18:82-96

{13} Ez 38:22

{14} Qur'an 18:100

{15} We note that the phrase "from whose face earth and heaven
     fled away" tends to favor the first interpretation since it
     correlates with Rev 6:12-17. On the other hand 'heaven and
     earth' (the former Spiritual and Material Laws of God)
     always 'flee' from the face of a Manifestation of God.

{16} Note that 'thrones' is plural. If there were a single
     individual who is to have the power of judgment during the
     Millennium, the word would be singular.


NOTES TO CHAPTER 21

{1} BWF, p 350

{2} Is 54:5-6 

{3} See Rev 2:17,  3:12

{4} REB: Isaiah 65

{5} Is 65:1; BH: WOB, p 104;  GPB, p 169

{6} Is 65:10

{7} Is 65:11-12

{8} Is 65:17

{9} Is 65:20

{10} Is 65:25

{11} The REB version of Isaiah 65:16 reads: "Anyone in the land
     invoking a blessing on himself will do so by God whose name
     is Amen, and anyone in the land taking an oath will do so by
     God whose name is Amen, for past troubles are forgotten;
     they have vanished from my sight."      The REB is at
     variance with the KJV, the RSV and the NIV. These translate
     'Amen' as the 'God of truth.'      I do not know the
     rationale for these interpretations.  However, assuming that
     'Amen' is introduced as a sacred name of God in the new Age, 
     what is its meaning? In Piscean Judeo-Christian usage, the
     word came to mean simply 'faithful and true!', a 'seal' or
     an echo of assent to the truth of a spiritual statement.  In
     Rev 3:14 we find that usage of "Amen" in reference to
     Muhammad, the "faithful and true witness" to the Prophethood
     of Jesus.     The 'Rx' symbol on a prescription drug has
     come to mean simply a statement of clinical potency,
     although it was originally an abbreviation of a prayer to
     'Jupiter Rex,' the king of the Roman pantheon. Similarly, 
     'Amon' or 'Amen' was also the name of the chief god of upper
     Egypt whose worship was introduced near the beginning of the
     Age of Aries and flourished during the Egyptian Captivity.
     Literally, the name means 'Hidden.' In the words of
     Bahá'u'lláh, God is the 'Unknowable Essence,' and 'the most
     hidden of the hidden.'  Apparently, in the Leo-Aquarian Age,
     the ancient title might become an acceptable appellation for
     God, since 'past troubles are forgotten.' 

{12} REB: Ezekiel 28:13-16 lists some of the stones that will be
     given in this and later verses.  The king of Tyre, adorned
     with semi-precious stones, once walked on 'God's holy
     mountain' (Carmel), but is brought down in disgrace "from
     among the stones that flashed like fire."       Ezekiel {28}
     gives the dimensions of the holy City as 4,500 measures on
     each side and 18,000 measures around the perimeter. Both of
     these numbers have an archetypal value of 9.  The dimensions
     of the altar {29} are given as 12 cubits on each side, which
     gives an archetypal value of 9 for its area. The altar is
     purified for 7 days. {30} The 7 'days' symbolize the seven
     Faiths (1:4) that precede the Faith of the Bab and     
     Bahá'u'lláh.  


{13} Ezekiel 48:31-34 gives a list of names of the tribes as they
     are to appear on the gates of a prophetic city allotted to
     the tribes of Israel. Ezekiel's list is at variance with
     Revelation 7:5-8 and does not appear to have astrological
     significance.

{14} using Luke's 6:14-16 list.

{15} See Zech 11:13 and commentary Rev 7:5-8.

{15}{16} TAB, pp 92-94; WAB, pp 164-167

{17} AB:  SAQ, pp 284-286

{18} AB: SAQ, p 67.  See also Joshua 4 and Matthew 19:28.

{19} The orientation of the holy City follows the canon of the
     four cardinal directions.  We find the same canon applied,
     for example, to the Giza pyramids. The three gates in each
     wall represent the three zodiacal signs centered about that
     cardinal direction.

{20} TAB, pp 92-94; WAB, pp 164-167

{21} Reported by E.T. Hall of Manchester, England on February 28,
     1920.

{22} Recent discoveries by certain Egyptologists indicate that
     astrology played an important part in the design and
     placement of the Giza pyramids.     In contrast to the
     pyramid of the new Jerusalem, the Great Pyramid of Giza has
     a base that lies OUTSIDE the circle.      There are many
     other interesting facts and speculations concerning the
     Great Pyramid of Giza, but only pertinent characteristics
     will be recited.

{23} That is, the 'Quadratura Circuli,' discussed in depth by
     Carl Jung in PSYCHOLOGY AND RELIGION, Yale University Press,
     1971. See SOME NUMEROLOGY in the INTRODUCTION.

{24} Cf. Zech 1:8-21 with Rev 6:1-8, 7:1.

{25} See TAB, pp 538-40

{26} Approximately 25,920 solar years.  Also called a Great Year
     or a Platonic Year.

{27} Proof not given here.  Some of the results follow from the
     'circular property of 9,' that is, any real, positive,
     non-zero number multiplied by 9 will have an archetypal
     value of 9.

{28} The interested reader may test other theories of his own,
     such as by letting each edge of the pyramid equal 12,000
     measures, or by assuming a cubical shape for the holy City.
     Regardless of the assumptions posited, the number 9 will
     appear with high frequency in the archetypal values of the
     parameters.       

{29} This interpretation of the 12 Foundation Stones is based on
     a pilgrim's note purportedly given to Shahnaz Waite by
     'Abdu'l-Bahá. My typed copy contains many typographical and
     other errors. I have taken some liberties with the text of
     the note to correct obvious errors, make it more readable,
     and to elaborate on certain portions where I considered it
     productive to do so. In particular, I included 'justice' as
     an attribute of the sapphire in accordance with the ancient
     Egyptian priesthood's use of the stone to represent 'truth
     and justice.' The Twelve Basic Principles as listed here can
     be found in several issues of STAR OF THE WEST beginning
     with Vol 10, March 20, 1920.

{30} BH: TABLETS OF BAHA'U'LLAH, p 169

{31} Occultly derived from Exodus 14:19-21. (See KLIMA in the
     INTRODUCTION.) The set of 72 names was further divided into
     4 groups of 18 names in correspondence with the four letters
     of the Tetragrammaton, and apparently in correspondence with
     the four zodiacal seasons.     Astrologers describe the
     attributes of a sign of the visible zodiac in 6-term
     combinations of:  masculine or feminine;  diurnal or
     nocturnal; commanding, melancholy, phlegmatic or sanguine;
     earthy, airy, fiery or watery;  hot or cold;  dry or wet.
     There are probably other secrets in the number 144 that will
     not be discussed here.

{32} REB: Isaiah 54:11

{33} Is 54:11

{34} From Lat. 'templus'; Hebrew for Temple is 'beth Jehovah' or
     'hecal Jehovah,' a residence or palace of Jehovah.

{35} Ex 6:12-13

{36} See Mal 2:8;  Mark 7:5-8.

{37} Is 60:11,  19-20

{38} Is 60:1

{39} Is 60:14

{40} Is 60:4,  9

{41} The Pantocrator is thrice-holy in 4:8.

{42} The Bab: SWB, p 129 fn

{43} See commentary Rev 7:5-8.

{44} In THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED, I proposed that the Bab was the
     'Moon' in this verse. The moon is a reflector of the sun's
     light. Since he was a Manifestation of God, the Bab was a
     'Sun,' not a 'Moon.'


NOTES TO CHAPTER 22

{1} NTG, Aug 3rd.

{2} Ex 33:11. But in Ex 33:18,  Moses seems unsatisfied with this
     arrangement and requests that he be permitted to see His
     'Glory' (Heb 'Kabowd').   Psalms 73:24 reads (REB) "You
     guide me by your counsel and afterwards you will receive me
     with glory. 

{3} We also note that Ez 9:3-4 (REB) reads: 3 "The glory of God
     of Israel ..... called to the man dressed in linen, with pen
     and ink at his waist.  4 'Go through the city of Jerusalem,'
     said the Lord, 'and mark with a cross the foreheads of those
     who groan and lament over all the abominations practiced
     there.' "

{4} Cf. Rev 1:17,  19:10.  

{5} Cf. Rev 1:3,  10:4.

{6} REB, NIV and RSV: 1:8,  21:6 and 22:13.  In the KJV, it also
     occurs (spuriously?) at 1:11.

{7} Is 44:6-7

{8} Jesus reveals that "many of the first will be last, and the
     last first." (REB) Mark 10:28-31; also see Matt 20:1-16. 
     Jesus' words imply that many of those who are the first to
     accept his own Manifestation may be the last to accept the
     Manifestation of the Age to come.  Confirmed Bahá'ís, even
     former atheists, readily accept the validity of the
     Manifestations of all previous Ages, including Jesus Christ
     and Muhammad.

{10} GWB, p 104

{11} Cf. Matt 2:2.  The 'rising star' seen by the astrologers
     from the East (Zoroastrians?) was probably the great
     conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter that occurred in 6 BCE.

{12} A few variations in versions of the Apocalypse have already
     been noted.  Certain Christian groups have rejected the
     Apocalypse altogether.

{13} in Hebrew! Later equally heroic attempts have been made to
     equate 666 to various favored villains.  Besides the Caliph,
     Napoleon may have had enough villainous stature to qualify
     for the number, especially since he is the subject of Daniel
     11:36-45.

{14} Bahá'u'lláh explains that the phrase 'the Alpha and the
     Omega' means 'the Word of God,' and thus it can be applied
     collectively to every Manifestation of God, since they "are 
     regarded as one soul and the same person, ... utter the same
     speech, and proclaim the same Faith."  However, Shoghi
     Effendi explains that, in the Apocalypse, the title
     specifically refers to Bahá'u'lláh.  (BH: TTJ;  WOB, p 115; 
     SE:  GPB, p 95

{15}  at 1:8, 1:11(?), 21:6,  22:13.

{16} See commentary, Rev 5:5.


NOTES TO APPENDIX A 

{1} In at least one version of the Apocalypse, the Alpha is
     spelled out while the Omega remains a single letter. The
     literal value of this version is 1332, which is twice-666.

{2} The hamza is a glottal stop with the value of 1, the same
     value as the alif.
                    SOME BAHA'I APOCALYPTIC WRITINGS


     The following writings have been used as background material
for much of this Commentary on the Apocalypse. They are described
in more detail in THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED.

GENERAL:

'Abdu'l-Bahá: BS, Sections 92, 804 
'Abdu'l-Bahá: TAB, pp. 285-6, 294, 678-81
'Abdu'l-Bahá: SOW,  Vol. 8, p 180
Shoghi Effendi: GPB, pp 48-9, 57-8, 93-100, 238-40
Mirza Asadu'llah: SOW, Vol. 2, No.1, pp. 3-4
Mirza Asadu'llah: SM, pp 112-19

CHAPTER number:

VERSES; AUTHOR; SOURCE

CHAPTER 1:

4;  Shoghi Effendi;  BAHA'I NEWS, No. 77, Sept 1933
7;  Bahá'u'lláh;  BOC, pp 71-3,  216-7
4, 16, 20;  The Universal House of Justice;  Letter to individual
     believer, Aug. 7, 1978
4;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SAQ, p 179
8;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  PT, p 51
8;  Shoghi Effendi;  GPB, p 95
8;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SAQ, p 254
8;  Bahá'u'lláh;  TTJ
8;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  WAB, p 13
11-16;  Bahá'u'lláh;  TOM 

CHAPTER 2:

17;  Bahá'u'lláh;  GWB, p 195
17;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SOW, Vol 11, p 275
17;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  TAB, p 677

CHAPTER 4:

4;  Shoghi Effendi;  GPB, pp 7-8
4;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SAQ, pp 86-7
4;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  TAB, p 39

CHAPTER 6:

12-13;  Bahá'u'lláh;  BOC, pp 33-4, 36-41

CHAPTER 9:

12;  Shoghi Effendi;  M-to-A;  pp 99-100

CHAPTER 11:

all;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SAQ, pp 53-71
11-14;  Shoghi Effendi;  GPB, pp 49-50
13;  Shoghi Effendi;  GPB, pp 53-54
13;  Mirza Asadu'llah;  SM, pp 16-17

CHAPTER 12:

all;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SAQ, pp 77-82

CHAPTER 13:

8;  Louis Gregory & Mirza Abu'l-Fadl;  SOW, Vol 13, No 14
18;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  Two Tablets to individual believers

CHAPTER 16:

16;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SOW, Vol 10, No 3
16;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  'ABDU'L-BAHA, pp 259, 438
16;  Shoghi Effendi;  WOB,  pp 4-7

CHAPTER 19:

16;  Shoghi Effendi;  GPB, p 206

CHAPTER 20:

3;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  TAB, pp 659-60
4;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  TAB, pp 396-7,  429-30,  643-4
7;  Shoghi Effendi;  Bahá'í News, No 89, Jan 1935, p 1

CHAPTER 21:

1-2;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  SOW, Vol 18, No 197
1-2;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  TAB, pp 538-40
1-2;  Shoghi Effendi;  Bahá'í News, No 134, Mar 1940, p 2
1-2;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  PUP, pp 17-8,  35-6,  97-8
1-2;  Mirza Asadu'llah;  SM, pp 37-40
1-2;  Bahá'u'lláh;  ESW, pp 144-5
1-2;  Shoghi Effendi;  GPB, p 213
1-2;  Shoghi Effendi;  WOB, pp 204-6
1-2;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  PT, p 84
1-7;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  BWF, pp 350-1 and WAB, pp 12-3
2;  Shoghi Effendi;  ADJ, pp 64-7
2;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  BWF, pp 380-1
10-17;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  TAB, pp 92-4 and WAB, pp 164-7
15;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  pilgrim's note to E.T. Hall, 1920
19-20;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  pilgrim's note to S. Waite, circa 1920
19-20;  ?;  SOW, Vol 10, Mar 20, 1920, pp 358-9
22-23;  'Abdu'l-Bahá;  TAB, pp 10-11
23;  Bahá'u'lláh;  BS, Sect 47, p 117
23;  Mirza Abu'l-Fadl;  SOW, Nov 22, 1902

                        SOME BIBLICAL REFERENCES


SYMBOLISM: 

Wind-  Gen 8:1;  Ex 10:13,  19,  14:21,  15:10;  Num 11:31;  2
     Sam 22:11;  1 Kings 19:11;  Ps 18:10,  78:26,  104:3, 
     107:25;  Jer 49:36;  Is 59:19, 60:19-20;  Ez 37:9;  Dan 7:2; 
     Zech 2:6;  Matt 8:26-7  

Dogs and pigs: Matt 7:6

Millstone: Luke 17:2

'Heaven and earth': Matt 24:35

Tower of Babel: Genesis 11:9

'Tree of Life': Gen 2:9

Horn' as a name: Dan 7:8,  11,  20-24,  8:5-22

'Horn' as a 'head': Ps 92:10,  112:9

'See':  Is 6:9-10;  Matt 13:14-19,  24:15;  John 9:39;  Acts
     28:26-27;  Romans 1:20. Cf Matt 17:10-13 with 2 Kings 2:11 &
     Mal 4:5     

'Death,' 'sleep,' etc.: Gen 2:17;  Ez 18:21-23;  Matt 8:21-22, 
     10:28;  John 11:25, 17:3;  1 Tim 5:6; 

Raised from death: Romans 1:2

'Clouds': Ps 97:2;  Is 44:22, 50:3;  Ez 30:1-3, 32:7-8;  Zeph
     1:14-15;  

Stars shall fall, etc.-  Matt 24:29-30  

Rod of Iron-  Is 11:4  

'Manna' = 'Word of God'-  John 1:1-2,   3:34,  6:33 ff,  6:50-51, 
     12:49; Wisdom 9:17                  

Door:  Psalm 24:7-10;  Ez 43:1-4  

The rejected stone:   Ps 118:22  

'Seven eyes'- Zech 3:9- 4:10 

Seven suns: Is 30:26

Tree:   Gen 2:9;  Ps 1:3;  Prov 3:18;  Dan 4:10,  20-22;  Matt
     3:10,  7:19, 12:33  

Sun and heat-  Eccl (e.g.) 3:16,  4:1-16,  5:13,  18,  6:1;  Is
     49:10;  Ps 121:6;  Jonah 4:8;  Mal 4:1-2  

Water-  Is 12:3,  49:10;  Jer 2:13, 17:13;  Ez 36:25;  John
     4:10-14;  Zec 14:8  

Hunger- Ex 16:3-4;  Deut 8:3;  Neh 9:15;  Ps 34:10;  Amos
     8:11-12;  Matt 5:6; Luke 6:21,  25;  John 6:35  

Fire:  E.g.,   Is 1:25,  10:17,  30:27-33,  33:11,  66:15-16; 
     Amos 2:5;  Ps 29:7-8,  83:14-15;  Mal 3:2-3;  Jer 13:9;  Heb
     12:29

Grass and green things: Job 5:25,  8:16,  15:32,  Ps 23:2,  37:2,
     35-36, 52:8,  72:6,  90:5-6,  92:7,  102:4,  103:15-16, 
     129:6-8;  Pr 19:12;  Is 37:27,  40:6-8,  44:3-4,  51:12; 
     Jer 11:16,  17:8;  Ez 17:24;  Hos 14:8; Micah 5:7;  Luke
     23:30-31;  James 1:10-11; 1 Peter 1:24-25


Voices: Gen 4:10;  Ec 5:3-7;  Ps 55:3,  58:5,  74:23

Thunder, etc.:  E.g., Ps 46:6,  77:18,  93:3-5,  104:7

Sea and dry land:  E.g.: Exodus 14:16-29;  Haggai 2:6-7

Rain:  Ps 72:6;  Pr 16:15;  Is 5:6,  55:10-11;  Jer 5:24,  14:22; 
     Ez 1:28, 38:22;  Hos 10:12;  Amos 4:7;  Zec 14:17-18;  Matt
     5:45

Hail:  Ps 11:6,  105:22

Earthquake: Ps 114:7;  1 Chron 16:29-34; Joel 3:16;  Amos 8:8; 
Is 13:13,  14:16;  Hag 2:6-7;  Heb 12:26-27

Sun, moon and stars: Amos 8:9;  Ezek 32:7-8;  Job 38:7;  Num
     24:17;  Acts 2:20;  Jude 1:13; Matt 24:29;  Obad 1:4; Gen
     37:9;  Deut 17:3;  Ps 72:5,  121:6,  136:8-9,  148:3; Is 
     60:19-20,  14:12;   13:10,  30:26;  Jer 31:35;  Joel 2:10, 
     31,  3:15;  Micah 3:6;  Luke 21:25  


Heavens rolled up: Is 34:4;  Matt 24:29-30      

Mountains, valleys: Ps 114:4;  Is 14:25-26, 2:2-3,  40:4, 
     65:23-25;  Jer 48:8;  Micah 1:3-4;  Luke 23:30;  3:4-5;  Dan
     2;  John 4:21  

Dens, islands, rocks: Ps 18:2;  Deut 32:4,  30,  31       

Fire and brimstone:  Gen 19:24;  Deut 29:23;  Job 18:15;  Ps
     11:6;  Is 30:33, 34:9;  Ez 38:22;  Luke 17:29

Birds:  Gen 40:17-19;  Lev 14:6-53;  Ps 11:1,  35:7,  124:7;  Jer
     4:25, 5:27,  12:4-9;  Ez 13:20,  39:4; Ec 10:20;  Hosea
     9:11,  11:11;  Dan 4:33; Lam 3:52;  Is 31:5, 46:11;  Matt
     13:32;  Luke 17:20,  37  

Frogs: Exodus 8

Altar:  E.g., Ex 30:1,  27,  31:8,  35:15,  40:5;  1 Kings
     1:50-51;  2 Chron 6:22;  Amos 3:14;  Matt 23:18-22

Dead (Gr: 'Nekros' = lit. or fig. 'dead')- all of Revelation
     except Rev 11; all N.T. direct quotes of Jesus except: Matt
     9:24; Mark 5:39; Luke 8:52, 10:30;  John 6:49,  58,  11:14, 
     25  

Dead (Gr: 'Ptoma' = 'a lifeless body')-  Rev 11  

Dead (Gr: 'Apothnesco' = lit. or fig. 'to die off')-  Matt 9:24; 
     Mark 5:39; Luke 8:52;  John 6:49,  58,  11:14,  25  

Dead (Gr: 'Anazao' = lit. or fig. 'be alive again')- Luke 15:24, 
     32  

Alive (Gr: 'Zao' = lit. or fig. 'lively')-  Rev 1:18,  2:8  

Stand (Heb: ''Amad' = lit. and fig. 'arise')-  Dan 12:1,  13  

Awake (Heb: 'Quwts' = lit. or fig. 'arise')-  Dan 12:2  

'mark' as a 'sign' or 'token' (Heb 'oth'):  Gen 4:15;  Deut 11:18

'mark' as a 'signature' (Heb 'tawv'): Ez 9:4,  6

'mark' as a 'badge of servitude' (Gr 'charagma'):  Rev 13:16, 
     17,  14:9, 11,  15:2,  16:2,  19:20,  20:4

'image' as a 'resemblance' (Heb 'tselen'):  Gen 1:26

'image' as a 'resemblance' (Gr 'eikon'):  Matt 22:20;  Mark
     12:16;  Luke 20:24;  Rev 13:14,  15,  14:9,  11,  !5:2, 
     16:2, 19:20,  20:4


PARABLE AND ALLEGORY:

Allegory used in the Bible: Matt 13:10-23,  36-43, 15:8-20,
     16:11-12,  17:11-13,  22:29-32,  26:26-28;  Mark 4:10-12,
     34;  1 Cor 2:13-14,  4:20,  10:1-4, 14:15-20;  2 Cor 4:18; 
     Gal 4:21-26

Parable of the Vineyard:  Matt 21:33-41;  Mark 12:1-9;  Luke
     20:9-16

Parable of the Talents: Matt 16:21, 25:1, 14-30

Parable of the Feast: Matthew 22:1-13; Luke 14:16-24. Cf. Isaiah
     47 & 54; 

NUMBERS AND NUMEROLOGY:

Forty:  Ex 24:18;  Gen 7:4, 12,  8:6, 18:29, 50:3; Numbers
     13:25, 14:33-34; Deut 2:7, 8:2-4, 25,  9:18-25;  1 Kings
     19:8;  Ezek 4:6, 16:35,  24:18, 29:11;  Jonah 3:4;  1 Sam
     17:16;  Matt 4:2; Acts 1:3;  Ps 95:10; Micah (KJV) 7:15; 
     Josh 5:6,  13:1;  Mark 1:13;  Luke 4:2

'72'-  Num 11:25-6;  Luke (REB, NIV) 10:1  

'Thrice'-  Ex 34:23-4;  2 Kings 13:18-19,  25;  Matt 26:34;  Luke
     22:34; John 13:38;  Acts 10:16

Seven times seven:  Lev 25:8-12;  Deut 16:9

Seventy times seven:  Dan 9:24;  Matt 18:21-22

Two olive trees:  Zech 4:3,  11-14; Exodus 7; Ex 9:33, Ex 4:9, Ex
     4:21

The 12 stones of the priestly breastplate-  Ex 39:12  

Four horses of heaven- Zech 6:2-3 

Bonding of souls-  Matt 13;  Mark 4:30-34  


AGES AND ASTROLOGY:

Future Ages: Ps 72:5;  Matt 12:32,  24:3,  26:29,  28:20 (RSV); 1
     Cor 10:11

Four corners: Zech 1:8-21

The cosmic machine-  Ezek 1,  10  

Cosmic seasons-  Mark 13:28-29  

Age of Aries- Acts 17:23  (Egyptian cult of Ram = 'Amon' =
     'Occult')  

'Lamb of God'-  John 1:29,  36  

Age of Pisces-  Matt 2:1-2  

Golden calf (Age of Taurus)-  Ex 32:23  

Four horses of heaven- Zech 6:2-3 

'Forever' is an 'Aeon'-  Cf. Matt 28:20 in KJV and RSV;  1 Peter
     1:5,  20, 4:7;  1 Cor 10:11;  Jude 18  


PROGRESSIVE REVELATION:

Progressive Revelation: Heb 4:14,  6:20,  7:12;  9:15-28 (cf. 1
     Tim 2:5 & 2 Cor 3:7-11)

Future Manifestations:  Matt 16:27,  19:28, 24:3, 30, 44;  Mark
     13:26;  Luke 9:26, 17:24-26, 30,  18:8;  John 14:16, 17, 26, 
     15:26, 16:7, 8, 13

Jesus foretold by Moses: Deut 18:15-19; John 5:46

"Fierce as a Lion to Judah" (Third-Day prophecy)-  Hosea 5:14 -
     6:2. [The three 'days' are the Dispensations of Jesus,
     Muhammad and the Bab. The Bab's Declaration came a few weeks
     after the Edict of Toleration that permitted the Jews to
     resettle the Holy Land.]

New song-  Is 42:9-10,  43:19     


THE BOOKS WERE SEALED:  Dan 12:4, 8-9;  John 16:12-13;  1
     Corinthians 13:8-12


STATION OF A MANIFESTATION:

Son of God: John 10:34-35;  Psalm 82:6-8;  Romans 1:3-4;  Heb
     1:4-6

Jesus' relationship to Abraham: John 8:58

The Manifestation as a 'Mirror'-  Colossians 1:15;  Hebrews 1:3-4 

"I and my Father are one."- John 10:30    

Autonomy of a Manifestation-  John 5:26-27  


RESURRECTION AND THE RAPTURE:

Born again: John 3:5-7, 6:54-8

The time known only to God: Luke 14:14;  Matthew 24:36

The 'Rapture'-  Cf. 1 Thess 4:16 and Ephesians 2:5-7  

Resurrection: (Gr: 'Anastasis' = 'a standing up again' = lit. 'a
     resurrection from death' or fig. 'a moral recovery of
     spiritual truth')-  Rev 20:5, 6; all direct quotes of Jesus
     in the Gospels (i.e., Matt 22:30-31;  Luke 14:14, 20:35-36; 
     John 5:29,  11:25); also Matt 27:53,   12:18,  23;  Mark
     12:26-27; Luke 20:27, 33;  John 11:24  

Resurrection (Gr: 'Egersis' = lit. 'a resurgence from death' or
     fig. 'an awakening from inactivity')-  Matt 27:53  

Resurrection (Gr: 'Exanastasis' = lit. 'a rising from death')- 
     Philippians 3:11  

The 'Rapture':

     Raised (Gr: 'Egeiro' = lit. 'to waken from sleep or death'  
          or fig. 'to rouse from inactivity')-  Eph 1:20

     Raised (Gr: 'Sunegeiro' = lit. 'to rouse from death in
          company with' or fig. 'to revivify spiritually in
          resemblance to')-  Eph 2:6

     Caught up (Gr: 'Harpazo' = 'to seize' in various
          applications)-  1 Thes 4:17;  Rev 12:5
     
     Alive (Gr: 'Zao' [see above])-  1 Thes 4:15,  17      


DISPENSATION OF BAHA'U'LLAH:

One name for God:  Zech 14:9

One God:  Eph 4:4-6;  Gal 3:20;  Mal 2:10  

One shepherd: John 10:16

As bright as 7 suns: Is 30:26

Day not followed by Night-  Zech 14:7 

Deliverance of daughter of Zion: Is 62:11

Falcon from the east: Is 46:10-11 

Word renewed at Babylon: Micah 4:10;  Ez 1:1,  28,  43:1-4;  Zec
     4.  Cf. Ezra 5:2 & Zech 4:9. [The river Chebar or Kabar
     empties into the Euphrates at Babylon. 'Zerubabel' means
     'Banished in Babylon.']

"Here am I, here am I": Is 65:1

One like the son of man: Daniel 7:13

Marriage of the Lamb: Isaiah 47 & 54

Mystical references to Bahá' (Glory): Is 60:1-2;  Hab 2:14; (Beth
     and Ayn:) 1 Kings 7:21; 2 Chron 3:15 ; Exod 13:21; Ruth 4:21

Lord of Hosts, First and Last, Latter Day Redeemer, King of
     Glory: Is 41:4, 14, 44:6, 47:4,  48:12,  59:19-21;  Ps 24:7-
     10;  Job 19:25;  Jer 23:5-8

God of Glory:  Acts 7:2

Spirit of Truth:  John 16:12-15

Throne of Glory:  Jer 14:21;  Ez 1:26;  Matt 19:28,  25:31

'Zerubbabel' (= 'Banished in Babylon' = Bahá'u'lláh)-  Haggai
     2:23;  Zech 3:9- 4:10  

Rod of Jesse: Is 11:1, 10

Michael:  Dan 10:13,  21,  12:1-4. [Also see Exodus 23:23. 'My
     Angel' = 'Michael' by rearrangement of the Hebrew letters.
     This is an ancient form of letter mysticism called
     'temurah.'] 

Birth of Michael: Dan 12:1

The 'Return'-  Luke 13:35;  Matt 16:27,  17:10-13,  25:31-33

Thief in the Night-  Matt 24:42-44;  Luke 12:39-40; Cf. 2 Peter
     and Wisdom 17:19-18:1  

Glory [= Heb 'Kabowd' =  Gr 'Doxa' = 'palpable manifestation'] 
     E.g.:  Deut 5:24;  1 Sam 4:21;  Ps 73:24;  Is 3:8,  6:3;  Ez
     39:21;  Matt 24:30;  Mark 13:26;  Luke 9:26,  21:27,  24:26

Glory of God:  E.g.:  Ex 16:7, 10,  24:16,  33:18,  40:34;  Lev
     9:6;  Num 14:10;  Ps 19:1,  24:7-10,  102:16, 138:5;  Is
     35:2,  40:5,  60:1, 11, 19-20;  Ez 1:28,  3:12, 43:1-4, 
     9:3, 10:4, 18, 19,  11:22, 23;  Hab 2:14;  Hag 2:7; Matt
     16:27;  Mark 8:38; Luke 2:9,  9:26;  John 11:4, 40,  17:5,
     22, 24,  9:26,  21:27,  24:26;  Acts 7:55 


Glory of God at Babylon [at the river Kebar]:  Ez 3:23,  8:4, 
     43:1-5

Glory of God fills the Sanctuary:  1 Kings 8:11;  2 Chron 5:14

Cloak dyed red; winepress, etc.: Gen 37:31-33, 49:11; Isaiah
     63:1-3

Rejection of Bahá'u'lláh:  Luke 17:22-25;  Is 60:1-3

Forty-year Ministry:  KJV: Micah 7:15  

Israel's call to return:  Is 5:24-26,  60:4, 9

THE BRANCH, 'ABDU'L-BAHA: Isaiah 11:1 (KJV).

THE CHILD, SHOGHI EFFENDI: Is 11:6  

CARMEL:

Carmel:  1 Kings 19:8;  Is 35:2;  Jer 46:18,  50:19

Napoleon at Carmel:  Dan 11:45 to 12:1

Bahá'u'lláh at Carmel:  E.g., Is 35:2,  41:2; Is 65:  Jer 49:38; 
     Ez 43:2; Hosea 2:15; Micah 7:12-15;  Matt 24:3, 27, 36. In
     these prophecies, Assyria included old Babylonia, etc.; Elam
     was a region included in Persia;  'Achor' literally means
     'trouble,' an occult name for modern 'Akka; 

OLIVE TREES:

Olive trees:  Ps 52:8;  Jer 11:16;  Hos 14:6

Two olive trees:  Zech 4:3,  11-14

BABYLON:  

Fall of Babylon: Isaiah 47

Fall of Israel to Babylon: Jer 25:10

Babylon;  Ps 137:8;  Is 21:9,  48:14;  Jer 29:15;  Jer 50;  Zec
     2:7

Babylon in ruins:  Jer 51:58,  64

Daughter of Babylon:  Is 47

Word renewed at Babylon: Micah 4:10;  Ez 1:1,  28,  43:1-4;  Zec
     4.  Cf. Ezra 5:2 & Zech 4:9. [The river Chebar or Kabar
     empties into the Euphrates at Babylon. 'Zerubabel' means
     'Banished in Babylon.']

DAY OF THE LORD:

A Day of the Lord = 'a thousand years':  Ps 90:4

Woe:  Is 3:9, 11,  5:8-22,  29:15;  Ez 13:3, 18,  34:2;  Luke
     11:42-52

Woe attends a Day of the Lord:  Amos 5:18

Rejection of Messengers: Matt 23:29-39;  Acts 7:51-53


SATAN:

Leviathan: Is 27:1

Dragon: Is 51:9;  Ezek 29:3

Scorpion: Gen 49:17-18

Serpent: E.g., Gen 3:1;  Ex 4:4-5;  Matt 10:16;  Job 26:13;  Is
     27:1, 14:29;  Amos 9:3.  Cf: Numbers 21:9 and John 3:14-15

Satan: E.g., Job 1:6 ff;  Zech 3:1 ff;  Matt 4:10,  12:26, 
     16:22;  Mark 1:13;  Luke 10:18,  13:16,  22:31;  Acts 26:18

Evolution of 'Satan': Cf: 2 Sam 24:1 and 1 Chron 21:1 

ZION:  Ps 65:1;  Is 2:3-4,  59:19-21;  John 4:21;  Romans 9:33,
     11:26;  1 Pet 2:6

ARMAGEDDON:

Megiddo:  2 Kings 23:29;  2 Chron 35:22; Zech 12:11           

THE ABOMINATION THAT MAKES DESOLATE:  Dan 8:13-14,  11:31, 
     12:11;  Ez 18:12;  Matt 24:15,  29,  30;  Mark 13:10,  14, 
     24-27;  Luke 21:20,  24-28

THE COVENANT:

The Covenant- Gen 9:13;  Ezek 1:28, 6:12-13; 16:62,  37:26;  Jer
     31:4,  31-34, 32:38-40;  Luke 1:72;  Is 52:9, 54:10,  59:21; 
     Ps 33:11,  105:8-9;  Hos 14:7;  Amos 9:11;  Mic 7:18-19; 
     Heb 8:8  

Violation of the Covenant:  Malachi 2:8-10;  Zep 3:9;  Matt 
     16:18-19,  28:18-20;  Mark 7:5-8, 16:15;  Luke 24:47;  John
     21:15-17;  1 Cor 4:9,  9:1-27,  12:27-31,  15:9;  2 Cor
     11:5-13, 12:11;  Gal 1:17-19

SACRIFICE:

Blood sacrifice-  Gen 22:13-14;  Ex 24:4-8;  Num 6:17,  28:9; 
     Lev 4:32-35, 16:11;  1 Peter 1:19,  2:5;  Heb 9:12-14, 
     10:4, 11, 12;  Is 40:2,  53:4-5; John 1:29,  36;  Rom 12:1  


'Lamb of God'-  John 1:29,  36  

ONLY BEGOTTEN:

Israel: Apoc of Ezra 6:55

Jesus: cf. John 1:18 in KJV and RSV  

THE NEW JERUSALEM:

The new Jerusalem-  Is 2:2-4,  9:6-7, Is 60, 62:1-2;  Zec 14:9  

Precious stones: Ezekiel 28:13-16; Is 54:11

No more curse: Isaiah 65;  Zech 14:11

'Running water': Zech 14:8

List of tribes: Ezekiel 28:13-16

'wall of fire': Zech 2:1-5

PROPHETIC TIME SCALES:

A 'day' equals a 'year': Numbers 14:34 and Ezekiel 4:6

A Day of the Lord = 'a thousand years':  Ps 90:4

'Forever' is an 'Aeon'-  Cf. Matt 28:20 in KJV and RSV;  1 Peter
     1:5,  20, 4:7;  1 Cor 10:11;  Jude 18  

3 1/2 'times': Dan 7:25 and 12:7

THRONE OF DAVID:

Throne of David-  1 Sam 16:1;  2 Sam 7:12-16;  Is 9:6-7;  Ez
     37:24;  Mal 2:10;  Zep 3:9

Sons of David cut off: Ezekiel 19:4; 2 Kings 21:2-7, 24:17, 25:7;
     Psalm 132:11-12; Jer 15:4, 36:30;  Is 63:10;  Zech 12:7   

Ultimate victory: Gen 49:10

Jesus denies the Throne:  Matt 10:34; John 18:33-36

KEY OF DAVID:  Is 22:22              

MESSIAH:

Cyrus a messiah: Is 45:1

Prepare a lamp for him: Psalm (REB) 132:17

Not a son of David: Matt 22:42-45;  Mark 12:35-37;  Luke 20:41; 
     Psalm 110;  John 18:33-36

DIVINE BESTOWAL: 

David: 1 Sam 16:1;  

Melchizedek, Jesus: Heb 5:4-5, 7:3, 15;  

Bahá'u'lláh: Is 11

THRONE OF HEAVEN:

Jesus: John 18:36; Matt 19:28; Luke 22:30

APOSTLES OF JESUS:

As per Luke: Luke 6:12

Sons of thunder: Mark 3:17

Judas: John 13:21-30;  Zech 11:7-14

GOG AND MAGOG: Ez 38

                          SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY


JUDEO-CHRISTIAN:

KJV:  THE KING JAMES VERSION OF THE HOLY BIBLE
NEB:  THE NEW ENGLISH HOLY BIBLE
REB:  THE REVISED ENGLISH HOLY BIBLE
NIV:  THE NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION OF THE HOLY BIBLE
RSV:  THE REVISED STANDARD VERSION OF THE HOLY BIBLE

Roland H. Bainton, CHRISTENDOM, Vol. 1, Harper and Row, NY, 1966
Ernst Muller, HISTORY OF JEWISH MYSTICISM, Oxford, 1946
Rudolph Bultmann, PRIMITIVE CHRISTIANITY IN ITS CONTEMPORARY
     SETTING, tr. Rev. R.H. Fuller, Meridian Books, World
     Publishing Co., Cleveland and New York, 1956
F.H. Colson, G.H. Whitaker, PHILO, London, 1929
Christopher Dawson, et al, SAINT AUGUSTINE, HIS AGE, LIFE AND
     THOUGHT, Meridian Books, the World Publishing Company,
     Cleveland, 1969 
Graham Hancock, THE SIGN AND THE SEAL, Crown Publishers, NY, 1992

MUSLIM:

QUR'AN: THE HOLY BOOK OF ISLAM 

Syed Aeer Ali, THE SPIRIT OF ISLAM, W.H. Allen Co., London, 1891;
     Christophers, 1935
T.W. Arnold, THE PREACHING OF ISLAM, Scribners, NY, 1913
E.J. Brill, THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ISLAM, Leiden, 1913-1942, 1960-
     1966
H.M. Balyuzi, MUHAMMAD AND THE COURSE OF ISLAM, George Ronald,
     Oxford, 1976

BAHA'I:

WAB- 'Abdu'l-Bahá, SELECTIONS FROM THE WRITINGS OF 'ABDU'L-BAHA 
PT- 'Abdu'l-Bahá, PARIS TALKS 
CB- Bahá'u'lláh, THE COVENANT OF BAHA'U'LLAH  (KITAB-I-'AHD)
SWB- The Bab, SELECTIONS FROM THE WRITINGS OF THE BAB 
SDC- 'Abdu'l-Bahá, THE SECRET OF DIVINE CIVILIZATION 
THW- Bahá'u'lláh, THE HIDDEN WORDS 
BOC- Bahá'u'lláh, THE BOOK OF CERTITUDE 
GPB - Shoghi Effendi, GOD PASSES BY 
WOB- Shoghi Effendi, THE WORLD ORDER OF BAHA'U'LLAH 
SAQ-, 'Abdu'l-Bahá, SOME ANSWERED QUESTIONS 
TDB- Nabil's Narrative, THE DAWN-BREAKERS, (trans. & edit. by
     Shoghi Effendi) 
BWF- Bahá'u'lláh and 'Abdu'l-Bahá, BAHA'I WORLD FAITH 
ROM- Bahá'u'lláh and 'Abdu'l-Bahá, THE  REALITY OF MAN 
ESW- Bahá'u'lláh, EPISTLE TO THE SON OF THE WOLF 
PMB- Bahá'u'lláh, PRAYERS AND MEDITATIONS 
GWB- Bahá'u'lláh, GLEANINGS FROM THE WRITINGS OF BAHA'U'LLAH 
TCH- Lady Blomfield, THE CHOSEN HIGHWAY 
WATAB- 'Abdu'l-Bahá, THE WILL AND TESTAMENT OF 'ABDU'L-BAHA 
ADJ- Shoghi Effendi, THE ADVENT OF DIVINE JUSTICE 
TPDIC- Shoghi Effendi, THE PROMISED DAY IS COME 
PUP- 'Abdu'l-Bahá, THE PROMULGATION OF UNIVERSAL PEACE 
TAB- 'Abdu'l-Bahá, TABLETS OF 'ABDU'L-BAHA ABBAS, (3 volumes)
     1940 
M-to-A - Shoghi Effendi, MESSAGES TO AMERICA (1932-46)
SM- Mirza Asadu'llah, SACRED MYSTERIES, 1902 
BS- Bahá'u'lláh and 'Abdu'l-Bahá, BAHA'I SCRIPTURES, 1923 
TTJ: Bahá'u'lláh, TABLET TO THE JEWS
BOL: Bahá'u'lláh, THE BOOK OF LAWS (KITAB-I-AQDAS)
TAF:  Bahá'u'lláh, TABLET OF ALL FOOD
TOM: Bahá'u'lláh, TABLET OF MYSTERIES
TOA: Bahá'u'lláh, TABLET OF AHMAD
NTG: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, London, NEARNESS TO GOD
SOW: STAR OF THE WEST, republished by George Ronald, Oxford
TOB: TABLETS OF BAHA'U'LLAH

Adib Taherzadeh, THE REVELATION OF BAHA'U'LLAH, George Ronald,
     Oxford (4 volumes)
Elena Maria Marsella, THE QUEST FOR EDEN, Philosophical Library,
     NY, 1966
Abdu'l-Qasim Faizi, EXPLANATION OF THE EMBLEM OF THE GREATEST
     NAME, Bahá'í News, Wilmette, IL, Oct 1968
Dhikru'llah Kadem, BAHA'U'LLAH AND HIS MOST HOLY SHRINE, Bahá'í
     News, Wilmette, IL, March 1976, No. 540
Jamshed K. Fozdar, BUDDHA MAITRYA-AMITABHA HAS APPEARED, Bahá'í
     Publishing Trust, India, 1976
William Sears, THIEF IN THE NIGHT, George Ronald, Oxford
J.E. Esslemont, BAHA'U'LLAH AND THE NEW ERA, Bahá'í Publishing
     Trust, Wilmette, IL 
Ruhiyyih Rabbani, THE PRICELESS PEARL, Bahá'í Publishing Trust,
     London
H.M. Balyuzi, 'ABDU'L-BAHA, George Ronald, Oxford
Usted Muhammad-'Aliy-i Salmani, MY MEMORIES OF BAHA'U'LLAH, (tr.
Marzieh Gail), Kalimat Press, Los Angeles, 1982
H.M. Balyuzi, BAHA'U'LLAH, THE KING OF GLORY, George Ronald,
Oxford, 1980

COMPARATIVE RELIGION:

Hans Jonas, THE GNOSTIC RELIGION, Beacon Press, Boston, 1963
Huston Smith, THE RELIGIONS OF MAN, Harper and Brothers, NY, 1958
Edward Conze, BUDDHISM: ITS ESSENCE AND DEVELOPMENT,
     Philosophical Library, NY, 1951   
Jacques Duscesne-Guillemin, SYMBOLS AND VALUES IN ZOROASTRIANISM,
     Harper and Row, NY, 1966
G.R. Driver, CANAANITE MYTHS AND LEGENDS, Clark, Edinburgh, 1956
David Brady, THE BOOK OF REVELATION AND THE QUR'AN: IS THERE A
     POSSIBLE LITERARY RELATIONSHIP?, Journal of Semitic Studies,
     Vol 23, #2, Autumn, 1978

GENERAL HISTORY:

Arnold J. Toynbee, A STUDY OF HISTORY
Simeon L. Guterman, RELIGIOUS TOLERATION AND PERSECUTION IN
     ANCIENT ROME, London, 1961 
S. Runciman, THE FALL OF CONSTANTINOPLE, 1453, Cambridge
     University Press, 1965
V.V. Bartold, TURKESTAN DOWN TO THE MONGOL INVASION, 2nd ed.,
     1958
Alexis Perrey, NOTE SUR LES TREMBLEMENTS DE TERRE, Academie
     Royale des Sciences des lettres et des Beaux Artes de
     Belgique, Bulletin, Vol. 18, No. 4, pp.291-308 of the First
     Series, 1855
O. Neugebauer, THE EXACT SCIENCES IN ANTIQUITY, Dover
     Publications, NY, 1969
Milton K. Munitz, THEORIES OF THE UNIVERSE, FROM BABYLONIAN MYTH
     TO MODERN SCIENCE, The Free Press, Macmillan Publishing Co.,
     NY, 1957  
Lord Curzon, PERSIA AND THE PERSIAN QUESTION

SYMBOLISM:

Carl Jung, MAN AND HIS SYMBOLS, Doubleday, Garden City, NY
Carl Jung, PSYCHOLOGY AND RELIGION, Yale University Press, 1971
Carl Jung, PSYCHOLOGY AND ALCHEMY, Collected Works, Bollingen
     Series XX, NY, 1953
Otto Rank, BEYOND PSYCHOLOGY, Dover, NY, 1958
Jose A. Arguelles, THE TRANSFORMATIVE VISION, Shambhala,
     Berkeley, Calif, 1975  
Adelaide S. Hall, A GLOSSARY OF IMPORTANT SYMBOLS, Bates and
     Guild, Boston, 1912

ASTROLOGY:

Giorgio de Santillana and Hertha von Dechend, HAMLET'S MILL,
     Gambit, Boston, 1969; David R. Godine, Boston, 1977
Arthur M. Harding, PhD, ASTRONOMY, Garden City Publishing Co., 
     NY, 1935
Alan Oken, AS ABOVE, SO BELOW, Bantam Books, NY, 1973
Robert Hand, HOROSCOPE SYMBOLS, Whitford Press, West Chester, PA,
     1981

NUMEROLOGY:

Plato, TIMAEUS
Aristotle, DE CAELO
E.W. Bullinger, NUMBER IN SCRIPTURE, Kregel Publications, Grand
     Rapids, Michigan, 1986
Carlo Suares, THE CIPHER OF GENESIS, Shambhala, Berkeley, 1970
John Mitchell, CITY OF REVELATION, Garnstone press, London, 1972;
     Ballantine Books, NY, 1973
Christopher Butler, NUMBER SYMBOLISM, Barnes and Noble, NY, 1970
F.B. Bond and Dr. T.S. Lea, GEMATRIA, Basil Blackwell, Oxford
Ernest G. McClain, THE MYTH OF INVARIANCE, Shambhala, Boulder and
     London, 1978

MATHEMATICS:

Kenneth Appel and Wolfgang Haken, THE SOLUTION OF THE FOUR-COLOR-
     MAP PROBLEM, Scientific American, October, 1977 
Martin Gardner, THE COLORING OF UNUSUAL MAPS LEADS INTO UNCHARTED
     TERRITORY, Scientific American, Feb, 1980
 
SACRED GEOMETRY:

Matila Ghyka, THE GEOMETRY OF ART AND LIFE, Dover Publications,
     NY, 1977
R.A. Schwaller de Lubicz, THE TEMPLE IN MAN, The Autumn Press,
     Brookline, Mass, 1977 
Peter Tompkins, SECRETS OF THE GREAT PYRAMID, Harper and Row, NY,
     1971
H.E. Huntley, THE DIVINE PROPORTION, Dover Publications, NY, 1970

BOOKS BY THE AUTHOR:

THE APOCALYPSE UNSEALED, Philosophical Library, NY, 1981 
I, DANIEL: The most recent version can be downloded from    
     http://members.aol.com/bennachti/riggs.htm
     
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