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 and sixty-six. [REV 13:18]

Note that 666 is not some magical number being stamped all over everything. It is a means of identification. Identification of a single individual.

If the Papacy is the beast power, then this equation must apply. And, it does.

The official latin title of the Pope is VICARIUS FELII DEI , which means "Vicar of the Son of God." For several centuries this official title appeared upon the Pope's mitre, his crown.

Take the roman numeral values of those letters and add them up. The total: 666 This was a common method of assigning a number to a person back in Biblical times, just as we derive a social security number today for identification. Using the system that was available when the book was written makes sense.


      V -   5        F -  0        D - 500       Remember:  U's are V's in
      I -   1        I -  1        E -   0                  the Roman alphabet!
      C - 100        L - 50        I -   1
      A -   0        I -  1      -----------
      R -   0        I -  1            501
      I -   1      -----------                           112
 U or V -   5            53                               53
      S -   0                                         +  501
   -------------                                     ---------
          112                                            666

A moment ago we said it was an individual. This is still the case; it is an individual who is in an office of power. For instance, we could say our leader is the president, no matter how many times the office holder changes, the statement still holds true.

This is by no means "new" news -- the principal exponent of this interpretation was Andreas Helwig ( c. 1572-1643; see L.E. Froom, The Prophetic Faith of Our fathers, vol 2., pp. 605-608)

Is this phrase currently found on the Pope's mitre? No. Back in the early seventeenth century the church of Roman was sufficently embarassed by this revelation, and they removed the "VICARIUS FILII DEI" from the mitre...

But, the Roman Catholic Church still continues using this phrase in their ceremonies whenever a new Pope is ordained. "VICARIUS FILII DEI" is the Pope's official title.

Perhaps you have seen or read Hal Lindsey's books, "The Late Great Planet Earth" or "The 1980's: Countdown to Armageddon." His interpretation of Bible prophecy is from the school of thought entitled "FUTURISM"... They say the Papacy is not the little horn power, they say the Papacy is not the anti- Christ; they claim that the anti-christ will be a single individual that will have power for a literal 1260-day/42-month period.

It is important to know how and why the Papacy is overlooked and ignored in Hal Lindsey's futurism. "Futurism" was originated in the late 1500's by, you guessed it, a Spanish Jesuit monk named Francisco Ribera (1537-1591). What futurism expounds is that the anti-Christ has not yet Shown Up, but he will "in the future." This was done to get the Roman Catholic Church off the hook... the Jesuits are Catholics, so what would you expect them to say? "Yes, we're the anti-christ"? Hardly.


                             THE FUTURIST VIEW

      Babylon        Greece                              The 1260 days, the
         |   Persia     |  [------ Rome -------]         42 literal months   |
         v      |       v                                                    v
  |   605  539  v  331    168                476                             _|
  |   B.C. B.C.    B.C.   B.C.      *        A.D.        *                    |
  |                                 *                    *                    |
1,000                            B.C./A.D.           1,000 A.D.           2,000
 B.C.                               *                    *                  A.D.
  |   605  539     331    168       *        476  538    *              1798  |
  |   B.C. B.C. ^  B.C.   B.C.               A.D. A.D.                  A.D.  |
  |       ^     |       ^                                                   ^ |
          |   Persia    |  [------ Rome -------]  [----- The Papacy ------] |
       Babylon       Greece                              1260 Years         |

                             THE HISTORIC VIEW

Futurism would have us ignore the existence of the Papacy. But the Bible prophecy exists to tell us how history flows, and, as you can easily see on the time line above, you're left with a giant gap between 476 A.D and present day.

But the historicst's view of the prophecies fills that very important gap, showing prophecies just didn't up and quit.

Also, there is another prominent element of futurism's anti-christ teaching that pictures him as being very anti-religious, that he will attempt to deny or demolish man's belief in the existance of God or Christ. But the fact that the anti-Christ claims to be God or Christ appearing on earth Does Not Pre- ordain That he Be Non-Christian.

"ANTI" in the Greek language not only means "against," but "in place of."

The religious nature of the "anti-Christ" will mislead millions, since they don't expect him to be a professing Christian, asking all to treat him as they would God. ...which is exactly what Popes require of those they've subjugated.