Armageddon: Christians Not Allowed to Buy or Sell

It was so bad under Domitian, that the Christians could no longer buy or sell. It was illegal for Christians to buy or sell in the empire, under Domitian, who may have been the antichrist although that man could have been a Jewish Zealot or high priest as well. It is not a test of faith to figure out who that man of perdition was!

Partial Preterism means that we believe all has been fulfilled, with the exception of the coming of Christ. The 1000 years have passed, the financial order has wrecked havoc in the world since 1995 to the present, and the end is near. No one knows the date of that end event, but we are in the last hours of the last days, since a prophetic day is a thousand years to God.

Full Preterists fail by believing the resurrection is past. Partial Preterism explains the end times with most prophesy fulfilled although many partial preterists are mistaken in other basic doctrine. I support the Partial Preterist endtime position, though this is one doctrine and not a basis for fellowship alone. I add some some wrinkles. With regard to Armageddon, even if the Romans fought with swords, the Christians fought a spiritual war based upon the love of Christ. In the present age, we fight the war against big finance and cruel government with the love and patience of Christ. More on Armageddon:

For centuries mankind has been interested in the battle of Armageddon.  Countless books have been written about this topic.  This battle is and has been the subject of so much controversy over the years that entire doctrines have been contrived around it.  It is not the purpose of this study to determine what the battle of Armageddon is not.  Rather, the goal of this study is to shed light on what this battle really is so that informed students of scripture can determine for themselves what it is not. 
First, we must bear in mind that John wrote this book directly to the churches of Asia in the latter half of the 1st century.  At the time of this writing the Lord's church was undergoing some of the most severe organized persecution it would face in all the Christian age.  Christianity was outlawed by the Roman Empire.  Emperor Domitian demanded to be worshiped as a god on earth and any who refused became enemies of the Imperial Roman Empire.  Violators were ostracized from society, forbidden to buy, sell or participate in any kind of government program.  Not only was it illegal for a Christian to buy or sell within the empire, it was illegal for the Roman citizens loyal to Domitian to sell to or buy from them. 

All commerce with Christians who refused to worship the emperor was forbidden by the state.   These economic sanctions were focused primarily on the Christians and excluded the Jewish people still worshipping under the Mosaic system.  The Jews comprised such a large part of the Roman economic engine that Domitian permitted them a degree of religious freedom but, they were forbidden to trade with their brethren of nationality who were Christians.

Those who were even suspected or accused of being Christians or even aiding them were imprisoned, their property seized by the state, their children were often sold into slavery, and the prisoners of the state were often subjected to various tortures up to and including their use in the Roman games for the public entertainment of the masses.  Publicly slaughtered by gladiators and wild beasts they became a grim example to the rest of the citizenry of Rome of the consequences for refusing to bow down to Emperor worship or for helping anyone who refused to obey their authority.  It was a dark time for God's faithful. 
The conditions under which the recipients of this letter received it forms the backdrop for how we are to understand it today.  Revelation was a book of comfort, exhortation and hope to a severely oppressed group of God's people.  It is only logical that they would be able to understand John's letter.  They would know the Battle of Armageddon and what it meant to Christians.  They would be familiar enough with the imagery to understand and apply it to their situation.  Nobody would write a letter of encouragement to a suffering loved one that they could not understand.  What the battle of Armageddon meant to John and the first readers of his book is what it was, is, or will be. 


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