October 13, 2015. Updated 10/13/2017 Steve Sabz
Fire show artist breathes fire in the dark (Photo by kuzeayo)

Fire show artist breathes fire in the dark (Photo by kuzeayo)

2 witnesses executed by the beast

October 13, 64 A.D.  Rome

On the hot summer day of July 18th in 64 AD, a fire breaks out in Rome that burns for six days and seven nights that destroys half the city. Rumors circulate that emperor Nero (54-68 AD) started the fire in order to free up property for his building projects. In conversation, he is reported to have said, "When I am dead let fire devour the world. "Nay," said he, "let it be while I am living" . Nero responds by blaming and arresting Christians, whom he publicly slaughters in the most horrific way during the dies imperi (regnal day anniversary) festivities in celebration of his 10th year as emperor of Rome  (Revelation 15:1-3).


The apostles Peter and Paul, "two olive trees on the right and the left of the lampstand" of the Lord (Zechariah 4:11-14, Revelation 11:3-4), at the same time suffer martyrdom at his hands, granting Nero the title "first among God's chief enemies."  The lampstands symbolize the churches (Revelation 1:20). Olive trees, or branches of the olive tree, represent the Jewish and Gentile believers who would be joined together into one olive tree that Paul describes (Romans 11:24). Peter was the witness to the Jewish branch, while Paul preached to the Gentile branch (Galatians 2:7-8). The fire coming out of their mouths (Revelation 11:5) is a symbol of the power of the word of God which they preached and spiritually defeated their enemies (Isaiah 5:24, Jeremiah 5:14, 23:29). Many "signs and wonders" were also performed by the Lord's apostles (Acts 2:43, 4:30, 5:12, 6:8, 14:3, 15:12, Romans 15:19, 2 Corinthians 12:12, Hebrews 2:4).


Nero's execution of two high profile servants of the Lord would have been witnessed by "some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations" (Revelation 11:9) present in Rome on his regnal day anniversary. This is the same scenario that Luke describes when he says that "there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven" (Acts 2:5) who witnessed the arrival of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost.


Church historian, Eusebius Pamphilius, testifies  that both Peter and Paul were executed by emperor Nero and buried in Rome. Since Paul was a Roman citizen (Acts 22:25-27), he was granted execution by sword. This method of capital punishment (i.e., beheading) fulfills Paul's allusion to his death when he wrote about "being poured out as a drink offering..." (2 Timothy 4:6). Peter, however, was not a citizen of Rome and was instead crucified (John 21:18-19). Nero was given authority over Christians until his death on June 9th in 68 AD, approximately 42 months after imperial-sponsored persecutions began (Revelation 11:3-7, Revelation 13:5-7).


  This article is an excerpt from the author's book  END TIME REWIND  

Steve Sabz

Steve Sabz

Born again (John 3:3, 1 Peter 1:23) on August 8th 1988, Steve Sabz is a professional educator with a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Physiology from William Paterson University,  where he also completed Graduate level courses in Human Physiology and Endocrinology. Currently, Steve is pursuing a Master of Arts in Systematic Theology at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary.  Steve founded Science and Bible Research in March 2014 with the goal of edifying the Christian through Science and Bible research in the areas of culture, faith, and reason. In the past, he faithfully served in church outreach ministries such as teaching English as a second language, playing guitar in worship bands, Scripture assembly projects, and inviting people within the local community to hear the good news of the risen Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In an effort to grow in the knowledge and grace of the Messiah, Steve successfully completed over 100 hours of Association of Christian Schools International-approved lecture courses in Principles of Biblical Interpretation, Doctrine of the End Times, Bible Survey (I - IV), Systematic Theology (I - IV), Apologetics (I & II), Church History (I - VI), Biblical Theology of Covenants, Doctrine of Election, Doctrine of Assurance, Doctrine of the Trinity, and Logic of Creation from Ligonier Ministries.  Steve is also the author of Evolution's Complexity Problem: See How Evolution Falls Apart At Its Beginning and End Time Rewind: An Exploration In Bible Prophecy And The Fate Of The World.