The CW network series The Messengers is the latest Hollywood production that distorts and misuses the Bible for entertainment dollars. The show, about 7 strangers who all die and resurrect at the same time to battle against Satan in the end times – is a wildly inaccurate take on the Book of Revelation that not only mocks the Christian faith but also promotes the rise of the Antichrist.
The trailer for the show is below:
And here is the show synopsis:
A mysterious object plummets to Earth, sending out a shock wave that causes five strangers to die, only to miraculously come back to life moments later. The group makes up of Vera (Shantel VanSanten), a struggling radio-astronomer living in New Mexico who is searching for her missing son; Erin (Sofia Black-D’Elia), a young mother in Tucson, Arizona who is desperate to protect her seven-year-old daughter Amy from her abusive policeman ex-husband; Peter (Joel Courtney), a troubled high school student and orphan in Little Rock, Arkansas; Raul (J.D. Pardo), a federal agent in Mexico who is looking to escape his dangerous and violent undercover assignment; and Joshua (Jon Fletcher), a charismatic second-generation televangelist in Houston, Texas.
Most mysterious of all is the figure known only as The Man (Diogo Morgado), who offers Vera the location of her abducted son if she will help him with one morally complicated task which puts her on a collision course with Rose (Anna Diop), a nurse in Houston who has been in a coma for seven years after being shot by an unknown hitman. Drawn together by fate and biblical prophecy, the “Messengers” soon learn they now have supernatural gifts that might be the only hope for preventing the impending Rapture. (source).
Distortion of the End Times
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. – Revelation 9:1.
The story opens with ‘ The Man’ – the villain who is later described as the Devil on the show, falling from Heaven as what is thought to be a meteor. The Messengers’ own promotion material uses the verse above from Revelation chapter 9 to reference this scene. Soon the five strangers at the center of the story learn they are part of the “seven angels of the apocalypse” detailed in the Bible and it is their mission to stop Satan’s plan of initiating the end times. While this may have been an attempt to be faithful to the Biblical account, there are a litany of errors that follow.
Dead People Becoming Angels
While it sometimes said and believed that humans upon dying become angels, the Bible makes no such statement. Angels are heavenly realm beings who existed far before the first human, Adam was ever created. This is explained in the book of Job. In a direct conversation with The Lord, Job is challenged by God to see if he can even begin to comprehend the vastness of God’s power. The Lord issues a series of questions to give Job perspective on how just how great The Lord is and His authority over the entire universe:
Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it? Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof; When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy? – Job 38:4-7.
At the time God created the Earth the “morning stars” and the “sons of God” – both references to angels “sang together” and “shouted for joy”. Thus it is clear that angels predate humanity. The Bible also says that humans are inferior to angels:
What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him? For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour. – Psalm 8:4-5.
So rather than being deceased human beings, angels are a different class of being altogether.
The 7 Angels of The Apocalypse Saving The World
Similarly there is no Scriptural basis for The Messengers reference to the “angels of the apocalypse.” In the book of Revelation there are seven angels who stand before the throne of God who act as servants in initiating the end times judgments God pours out on the unbelieving world:
And I saw the seven angels which stood before God; and to them were given seven trumpets…. 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 trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up. 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. 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. 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. – Revelation 8:1; 7-12.
And I saw another sign in heaven, great and marvellous, seven angels having the seven last plagues; for in them is filled up the wrath of God... 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. – Revelation 15:1; 7.
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. And the first went, and poured out 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 them which worshipped his image. 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. 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 shalt 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 are worthy. And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments. 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. 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 for pain, And blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds. – Revelation 16:1-11.
The seven angels in Scripture have one clear directive – to carry out the judgments God pronounced to punished the God-rejecting world. The world in the end times will be it at its apex of evil. The antichrist, the satanically-empowered false Messiah, will rule over the Earth. People will literally worship the Devil and the Antichrist as gods. With the overwhelming majority of the planet given over to Satan, God will take action and commence the end time judgments known as the Great Tribulation or the Day of The Lord in Scripture. And rather than being the “heroes” of Revelation – the seven angels are servants of God, who release the divine punishments on the Earth at His command.
In The Messengers, the seven angels are deceased human beings now tasked with saving the world. Rose, who is a prophetess and guide of the group tells the heroes they are being “tested” by God to prevent the apocalypse. This is a fictional concept that reinforces a very common New Age idea – that humanity can solve the Earth’s problems and save ourselves. Like most end times-themed TV shows or movies, there is no mention of Jesus Christ in this show. The Book of Revelation or the Apocalypse, is about the revealing of Jesus Christ as God and the true ruler of the Earth who returns to defeat the Antichrist and his armies, imprison Satan and rule the Earth from Jerusalem for 1,000 years. In the end times, the heavenly realm will be visible. Angelic beings, often referred to as “stars” in the Bible, will manifest on Earth. God’s will pour out His divine wrath on unbelievers in a manner so cataclysmic, there will be no doubt in the minds of the staunchest atheist that The Lord’s Hand is at work. These judgments, referred to in Scripture as the Day of The Lord or Great Tribulation, so rock the world, that even the wealthy and powerful scramble and hide to save themselves:
And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became 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 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? – Revelation 6:12-17.
These are the final series of judgments of the Earth before the Second Coming of Christ. It is the ultimate alarm that the time to repent and believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ is now. Nowhere are human beings leading any fight against Satan. What The Messengers does is move the focus from Jesus Christ and puts it squarely on humanity and its own ability to redeem itself. All while twisting the Bible’s message of salvation. Vera, the main character of the show, professes her atheism and yet she was still “chosen” to save the world by God. So by the show’s logic, faith in Christ is not even necessary to serve God – a message that is sadly being preached in many of the apostate churches of today.
Promoting The Rise of The Antichrist?
The Book of Revelation gives by far the most detail in the Bible about the Beast or Antichrist – the satanically-empowered false Messiah who will rule the Earth in a global government for the final 3 1/2 years before the Second Coming of Christ. The Antichrist will be a powerful military leader and perform real, supernatural miracles before the public. He will eventually be worshiped as a god. But what gives the Beast such prominence is that he dies and comes back to life right before the public eye:
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. And the beast which I saw was like unto 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. And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto 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. – Revelation 13:1-5.
Seeing the Antichrist in his spirit-realm form (as a seven-headed beast), the Apostle John describes the reign of the Antichrist as supreme ruler of the earth. And through some means – the Antichrist will suffer a deadly wound to his head that will heal. He will die and the world will believe that he resurrected. This will cause the entire world to “wonder” and be in absolute awe of this man. It is during this time of death that the Beast spirit from the abyss – a prison for evil angelic and demonic beings – will indwell the Antichrist. Through satanic, occult power the Antichrist will perform supernatural feats that move the world to make him their leader. Once in power, the Antichrist and his religious cohort, the False Prophet, will wage war against Bible believing Christians and impose a global system of mandatory worship under punishment of death.
Interestingly, on The Messengers, all of the seven “angels” receive their powers by dying and resurrecting:
So the heroes of the show gain supernatural power and prominence in the exact manner the Bible describes for the Antichrist. What spirit inspired a show that denies Jesus Christ while promoting the rise of the Antichrist?
One World Religion
The Messengers continues its false message by promoting a one world religion. In one of the early scenes the group of heroes assemble and learn their “divine” purpose. The group’s prophetess informs them that while the seven angels are from the book of Revelation, the end times are described in many religions. In episode 2, Strange Magic, a conversation between Joshua, the Joel Osteenesque preacher and Rose, the prophetess of the group confirms this:
“God is angry. So he’s testing us. This is about prophecy.”
“You mean the book of Revelation?”
“Different religions call it different things but God’s message is the same no matter how you slice it.”
This again is never stated in the Bible. Jesus Christ made it clear that He is the only way to forgiveness of sins and eternal life:
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. – John 14:6.
Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. – John 10:7-10.
Rather than affirming the message of other religions, the Bible specifically proclaims its exclusivity. The idea that all religions, regardless of their message, are the same is contrary to basic Biblical Christianity. The Bible’s message of eternal life is centered on Jesus Christ, who died on the cross to take the punishment for the sins of humanity. In doing this, The Lord offered Himself as a sacrifice to atone or make payment for the debt to God all people owe because of all have sinned:
And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement. – Romans 5:5-11.
A Christian does not earn their forgiveness. It is a gift from God, won by Jesus Christ who shed His righteous blood and took our punishment so that we could be declared innocent and be “justified” before God on judgment day. No other religion in the world teaches this message.
Preventing The Rapture?
For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words. – 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18.
The Day of The Lord will be seven years of horrific catastrophes and supernatural judgment. After thousands of years of murder, war, deception, greed, racism and perversion, the world which rejected God and even today, mocks and attacks God’s Word – will be punished. This will be a frightening time. But for those who believe and trust in God’s Word – there is an escape – the Rapture. As described above in 1 Thessalonians, the Rapture is an event that just precedes the starts of the Day of The Lord. It is when Jesus Christ Himself, descends from Heaven to the clouds and all Christians, dead and alive are “caught up” in the air – leaving the Earth to go with Jesus to Heaven. For those Christians who were alive at that time, it is a rescue from the impending destructive judgments of the Great Tribulation and the reign of the Antichrist. Isaiah 26 summarizes this:
Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead. Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast. For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain. – Isaiah 26:19-21.
While God rises to punish the Earth, His faithful believers will be behind “their doors” and protected in Heaven from the “indignation” a term for God’s wrath. Thus the rapture represents God’s mercy in the final years of the earth. On The Messengers, the Rapture is portrayed as a bad event. Rather than looking forward to the Rapture – the resurrected heroes on the show are trying to prevent it. The synopsis for episode 2 states:
“Rose then explains to the five that they all have been resurrected as angels, and that they have been chosen to be the Messengers of God in order to prevent the impending Rapture” (source).
Isaiah chapter 5 says: “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!“ Through subtlety, The Messengers takes God’s plan of salvation and turns into something we should want to avoid. Do not be deceived.
Mockery Of The Christian Faith
Joshua – the lone Christian among the seven angels on the show, is a thinly-veiled copy of Prosperity Gospel heretic Pastor Joel Osteen. With a mega church audience and successful TV ministry, Joshua preaches a message of “abundance” with no focus on God’s judgment or wrath (his father reminds him at one point that they “don’t preach fire and brimstone”). He is also the son of a famous preacher and based in Houston – just as Osteen is. The Messengers makes it clear that the Joshua and his father in particular are in preaching for the money and success, not from any genuine desire to share God’s Word.
It is not until Joshua dies and resurrects that he changes the tone of his message. As his post-resurrection “gift” Joshua receives prophetic visions and uses his airtime to warn the viewing audience about the apocalypse. His new sermons make him look like a lunatic as he shouts “heed my words or perish!” to the TV camera. And even his prophetic preaching distorts the Scripture. At one point he yells “I have seen the face of God..and it is terrible!” – something no prophet of God ever uttered in Scripture. During a time when he stopped receiving visions, the supposedly converted Christian preacher seeks the help of a Native American “medicine man” who gives him peyote to help the pastor get high to revive his prophetic messages from God.
Adding to the mockery of the faith is a scene where Joshua learns that his pregnant wife not only had an affair with Joshua’s pastor father – but that the child she carries may actually be the child from the adultery. Joshua’s father gleefully tells his son that the child “may be your brother” and calls the entire adulterous situation “a blessing.” The message from these scenes is clear – Christians are the ultimate frauds and behaving even worse that nonbelievers.
Trust The Real Message
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: 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. – Revelation 22:18-19.
The Book of Revelation is a startling book full of predictions that could not have possibly been fulfilled in the first century AD when the Apostle John wrote it. It describes a future where the entire global economy is controlled through a “mark” on the right hand or forehead of every person for the purchases of buying and selling. Until just a few years ago, technology to allow such a system did not exist. Revelation also details a global government and one world religious system where all people are required to conform to the “world’s religion” – again a notion that is just coming into shape as the religious in society are being pressured to modify their beliefs and remove any ideas which are not “politically correct” or “progressive” (and many heretical pastors are surrendering to this pressure). Revelation is the final time for a world to deny God before they witness the glorious Second Coming of Jesus Christ, in which all His enemies will be defeated and He will rule the world as God on Earth.
Rather than trying to prevent the end times, we should embrace its promises of salvation, protection and eternal life for those who put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins. Just as the Old Testament contained over one hundred prophecies predicting the First Coming of Jesus Christ to Earth in the first century AD – as a suffering servant who would be killed for the sins of humanity – Revelation predicts the return of Jesus as a conquering King who will defeat the Antichrist, Satan and restore peace and righteousness to a corrupted Earth. The Messengers gets only part of the message correct – the sins of the world will indeed bring on the wrath of God. However, where it completely corrupts and distorts the truth is attempting to remove Jesus Christ from Revelation. For an unbeliever the end of the world may seem like a frightening thought – and well it should be. But the real truth is that it is the beginning of the true new age of peace, goodness and eternal life for all of those who believe in Jesus Christ.
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. 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. – Revelation 22:16-17.