Review of Alexander Hislop's *The Red Republic*, Part One, by Rand Winburn
OK, it's time to review, Red Republic.
The Introduction was excellent. He even utilized a Scripture which I use on my home page: None of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand. He makes a strong argument that the thrust of the Revelation can be understood, apart from understanding the time sequences (pp. 9-10). I agree.
CHAPTER I: THE HOLY CITY
In my opinion, Hislop is way off here. All knowledgeable commentators agree that the Holy City is speaking to the Church, the Bride of Christ, the New Jerusalem. Hislop calls them all wrong, equating the Holy City with "the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Gomorrah." (p. 18). Jerusalem fits the description, as does Rome today, he declares. He dismisses the application of the "treading down" as signifying the persecution of the saints, but instead sees it as the "profanation of religious ordinances." (p. 19). In my mind, God is more concerned with souls than He is with sacred ceremonies. Man was not made for the Sabbath, but the Sabbath for man. On page 22, he interprets "tenth part" (verse 13) as relating to the ten toes and ten horns, which I find interesting. I liked how he stated unequivocally the fact of the ten distinct kingdoms which emerged in Western Europe, out of the ashes of the Roman Empire. On page 23, Hislop states these 10 kingdoms, though distinct, became subject to the spiritual supremacy of the Pope. I concur, believing that was what the Holy Spirit had in mind when describing the Beast from the sea with ten horns and ten crowns: the 10 kingdoms of Western Europe would be under the subjection and dominion of the Papal Antichrist. The crowns refer back to the Pope and his authority over the kings.
CHAPTER II: THE TWO WITNESSES
Note that Hislop acknowledges the Paulicians (aka 'Paulikians, per [E.B.] Elliott). (p.27). Personally, I do not draw the distinction of Western Witnesses versus Eastern Witnesses. Thus, I view the Paulicians as one of the two Witnesses who will always witness against the Antichrist, as does Elliott and [Isaac] Milner. I agree with Hislop that they are not relegated to two individuals, but a succession of faithful men. Hislop takes a Covenanter, Reconstructionist view that the two witnesses testify to "Christ's headship over the state...over nations and churches..." (p. 28). The two olive trees and anointed ones are symbolic of church and state, says Hislop. I view them as men having been given the prophetic office, who will never deplete their oil, as will the false prophets, the foolish virgins. I have much to say on the prophetic office and will one day write my views. Needless to say, I believe Hislop to be off here.
Please note that Hislop and I are in complete agreement as to the Mark of the Beast on the forehead: i.e., "the open and avowed adherents of Antichrist," and the Mark on the right hand: i.e., "those who with a better profession [evangelicals--Rand's comment] give the active cooperation of their hands to the support of the unhallowed system..." (p. 34). I have photos in my book and on my site [Antichrist in Our Midst photo session--Rand] which support that interpretation.
The mourning aspect of the witnesses I agree with. However, in my opinion, it is not mourning over the Antichrist, rather mourning over the defiant and rebellious unbelief of professing Christians to their prophecies of warning and doom. I agree with the "suffering" aspect of the witnesses (p. 38).
Hislop brilliantly recognizes the import of the seed of the serpent versus the seed of the woman (p. 39). This is a subject I deal with in my book--paramount, in my view, to rightly understand the grace of God and the atonement of Christ. Few recognize it or teach it.
He recognizes the two witnesses are prophets (p. 43, my view also), thus undermining his church and state theory. On page 46, he gives a very discerning teaching on the present day office of prophet, which I hold. On page 47, Hislop correctly understands the role of prophet being one who is sent to the professing Church in apostasy, yet insists on viewing the apostates as whole nations, rather than professing Christian individuals and churches.
Page 49--Hislop equates the Pope with the Man of Sin. Right-on. Interestingly, he views the Potato Famine as judgment from God for compromising with the Antichrist.