36 " 'The king shall do according to his own will: he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the wrath has been accomplished; for what has been determined shall be done.
37 " 'He shall regard neither the God of his fathers nor the desire of women, nor regard any god; for he shall exalt himself above them all.
38 " 'But in their place he shall honor a god of fortresses; and a god which his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things.
39 " 'Thus he shall act against the strongest fortresses with a foreign god, which he shall acknowledge, and advance its glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and divide the land for gain.' "
- In verse 36, this "king" (whom I shall refer to as the "Antichrist" for the remainder of this post) will exalt himself above every god - this fairly clearly indicates that he will himself claim to be a "god", demanding worship.
- In verse 37, "the God of his fathers" could be translated as "the gods of his fathers". In the first case, this would indicate either that he will be a Jew, or he will come from a Christian-influenced tradition/culture. Also, the phrase, "the desire of women", in the context of verse 37 dealing with various "gods" and their being honored, is almost certainly a reference to the desire of Jewish women to bear the Messiah - thus, the Antichrist will not "regard" the Messiah, Jesus, either.
- In verse 38, the word translated "fortresses" is the Hebrew word "maowz", which, according to Strong's Concordance, means: "a fortified place; fig. a defence: -- force, fort(-ress), rock, strength(-en), (x most) strong(hold)". And, in all other cases in the Old Testament where the King James Version reads "forces", a different Hebrew word than "maowz" is used, indicating that in Daniel 11:38, "maowz" does not mean "forces" (as it is translated in the KJV). Rather, it apparently means "stronghold" or "fort" or "fortress", or "a fortified place". In this sense ("a fortified place"), the word could be referring to temples. Actually, the same word ("maowz") in verse 39 is translated in the KJV as "strong hold" - thus, the concept involved appears to be, in both cases, "a fortified place", and could (or most likely would, given the entire context of "gods" and "regarding"/"worship") refer to temples.
- In verse 39, where it mentions "fortresses" (in the NKJV), the same Hebrew word, "maowz", is used. Now, I am not clear on the following, but perhaps "maowz" can be considered either plural or singular (like the word "sheep") depending on the context. If so, then in my opinion "(t)hus he shall act against the strongest fortresses with a foreign god" should rather read "(t)hus he shall act against the strongest fortress with a foreign god", where the word translated as "fortress" would actually mean a "temple". The "strongest" fortress/temple would be a way of referring to the Temple in Jerusalem (where "strongest" likely has a slightly different meaning, such as "greatest", or "most important", or something). If so, then in "act(ing) against" the Temple "with a foreign god" would apparently refer to exactly the same thing as described by Paul in II Thessalonians 2:3-8, where the "man of sin" opposes and "exalts" himself above all gods.
Now, the Antichrist is said, in these verses, to do what appear to be two contradictory, irreconcilable, things. First, it is said that he will exalt himself above "every" god, and not regard "any" god. Second, it is said that he will exalt a "foreign" god, a "god of fortresses". Well, which is it? Will he not regard any god, or will he honor a "foreign" god?
I believe the answer to this apparent dilemma is that the Antichrist will, in a certain sense, claim to be that "foreign" god, and thus by "exalting" and "honoring" that foreign god, he will be exalting and honoring himself. I believe that, combined with the description of the Antichrist (the Beast from the Sea) and his relationship to Satan (the Dragon) in Revelation 13, the Antichrist will not claim to be this foreign god "directly", but will claim to be its "final manifestation", or its "final representative", or something like this. Very similar to the relationship the high priests of Quetzalcoatl had with the god Quetzalcoatl - they were in human form, and were associated with the god Quetzalcoatl as divine representatives, vessels, of Quetzalcoatl, but did not claim to be Quetzalcoatl fully. The "feathered serpent" was "other" than them, but in some sense "pervaded" them. Something like this, anyway.
And, Quetzalcoatl, as the "feathered serpent", would fit quite well with the description in Revelation of the world worshiping the Dragon, the Serpent. Dragons (generally) are imagined as being capable of flying, yet have bodies like serpents (long and undulating). Quetzalcoatl is very, very close to being a Dragon of this sort.
If King Juan Carlos (or his son, Felipe) is the Antichrist (which seems fairly likely to me), then as King of Spain, he has an historical association with Quetzalcoatl through Cortez and Montezuma (the Aztecs thought Cortez was Quetzalcoatl [in the form of the last high priest of Quetzalcoatl] returned). King Juan Carlos has also, since at least 1995, made special trips to Central America, visiting various Aztec and Mayan sites, and promoting something called "The Quetzal Route", which has people embarking on a sort of "spiritual journey" starting at Quito, Ecuador (I think) and ending at Macchu Piccu (I think). In any case, that "Route" starts at an Aztec or Mayan site, and ends at another Aztec or Mayan site - what I remember reading was that at least one such "Route" ended with the travelers ascending an ancient Aztec or Mayan temple, and witnessing the rising of the Sun through the specially designed ancient architecture of the temple, which was a place of Sun worship. And King Juan Carlos made the comment that the journey would be "enlightening" for the participants (or something like this). Very pagan.
Quetzalcoatl was the primary god of the Aztec and/or Maya, especially later in their histories. But Quetzalcoatl was never incorporated into Spain's culture, nor any culture in Europe. As such, Quetzalcoatl could be described as a "foreign" god to King Juan Carlos, a god "which his fathers did not know". There is also an Aztec or Mayan prophecy about Quetzalcoatl "returning", and also an Aztec or Mayan prophecy about the end of the Age being in 2012, both of which inspired a book written in 2005 by a Daniel Pinchbeck titled, "2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl". In that book, Pinchbeck - who is a journalist who began dabbling in psychoactive drugs and the "shaman" culture - claimed to have received "communication" from a being calling itself "Quetzalcoatl", and who claimed to be coming back in 2012. Much of that "communication" sounds very much like something Satan would say in order to prepare people for his worship as described in Revelation 13.
Also, the Aztec and Maya are renowned for their stepped temples. Those temples are generally huge (some on the order of the Great Pyramids of Egypt). Several of those temples, perhaps most, were devoted to the worship of Quetzalcoatl. If the word translated as "fortresses"/"fortress" in Daniel 11:36-39 means "fortified temples/temple", or just "temples/temple", once again Quetzalcoatl would fit the prophecy quite nicely, in that Quetzalcoatl could quite well be described as a "god of fortresses" or a "god of fortified temples". (See Teotihuacan, plus other sites, for a description of various Aztec/Mayan temples.)
My belief is that King Juan Carlos (or his son Felipe) is the Antichrist, and that Satan will receive the worship of the world under the guise of "Quetzalcoatl", whom the Antichrist will claim to "represent" and whom the Antichrist will exalt. I also had a series of four or five "nudges" from God which pointed to Quetzalcoatl being that "foreign" god mentioned in Daniel 11 (culminating with John C. Whitcomb, during a lecture at a local church in 2006 on Creationism and the Bible, mentioning a large but extinct reptilian bird named the "Quetzalcoat" [not a typo - there is no final letter "l" in the name of that bird].)
This post has been edited by Godsword: 27 March 2008 - 01:51 PM