“Down, but not out for the count!”

We have just seen an electoral defeat for President Erdogan of Turkey. According to a report in the New York Times it said; “President Recep Tayyip Erdogan confronted the prospect of a stunning political defeat on Monday, as local voting in Turkey showed his party had lost the capital, Ankara, and possibly Istanbul, its largest city and his key base of support for many years.

The results of the municipal balloting on Sunday from around the country was a telling barometer of Mr. Erdogan’s weakened standing with voters, as Turkey’s economy has fallen into a recession and he has assumed sweeping new executive powers. Mr. Erdogan was not conceding defeat on the results in Istanbul, which were still unofficial.

But the head of the High Election Council said the opposition mayoral candidate, Ekrem Imamoglu, was leading the Istanbul race by 27,806 votes, with only 24,000 remaining ballots to be counted.The declining economy was at the forefront of voters’ concerns. After years of impressive growth, Turkey entered a recession in March. Unemployment is over 10 percent, and up to 30 percent among young people. The Turkish lira lost 28 percent of its value in 2018 and continues to fall, and inflation has reached 20 percent in recent months.”

There is a saying in boxing “he is down but not out for the count.” In other words this boxer has been knocked down to the canvas by his opponent but is not out cold but getting back up on his feet again to continue the boxing match. President Erdogan is not the sort of man to take this defeat. When you consider the heavy handed and autocratic tactics he has used in the past there is no way he will just go away quietly and submissively or disappear from the political arena or from the world’s stage for that matter.

This man from Turkey is far from finished. In the eyes of the wider Islamic world he is still a contender for the top job namely the supreme caliph of Islam as well as the prophesied Mahdi. When you consider his globetrotting activities especially in the Muslim world you can see over the years how he has been gathering supporters for his revived Turkish Ottoman Caliphate.

If President Erdogan could find a way to revive Turkey’s flagging economy he would become the number one political leader in that country again. Even though he is a dictator, he would be followed by the masses in Turkey if he guaranteed jobs and somehow found a way to revive the flagging economy. In the past there have been political leaders who saw the failing economy of their country and started a war to unify the nation in a so called ‘greater cause.’ Who knows the man from Turkey might just pull this one off just like Adolph Hitler did in Germany in the early 1930’s leading up to WWII?

It has been said that history has a way of repeating itself. Well what about Adolph Hitler? What can we learn from history about this man from Germany who started WWII?

In the 1930’s Germany became a republic in 1919. After losing the First World War, Kaiser Wilhelm II abdicated. Many Germans were dissatisfied with the new situation. They longed for a return to the Empire. Many people also believed that the ruling social democrats were to blame for losing the war.

Nevertheless, things started to look up from the mid-1920s onwards. And then in 1930, the global economic crisis hit. Germany could no longer pay the war debts stipulated in the Versailles Peace Treaty. Millions of Germans lost their jobs. The country was in a political crisis as well. Cabinets were falling, and new elections were held all the time. It seemed impossible to form a majority government.

This was the backdrop to the rise of the German National Socialist Workers’ Party (NSDAP). When it was founded in 1920, it was only a small party. But Hitler used his oratory talent to attract more and more members. The party was characterised by extreme nationalism and anti-Semitism. In November 1923, Hitler even led a coup attempt. It was a complete failure. Hitler ended up behind bars and the court banned the NSDAP. Both Adolph Hitler and President Erdogan did jail time.

At the end of 1924, Hitler was released after serving a relatively short sentence. However, his political career was not over. In prison he had written Mein Kampf, setting out his plans for Germany. From then on, the Nazis were to stick to the law and try to gain power by means of elections. They benefited from the economic crisis that began by the end of the 1920s.

The Nazis used the crisis to condemn the government and the Versailles peace treaty. Their strategy was effective. In the 1928 elections, the NSDAP gained 0.8 million votes; in 1930, the number had increased to 6.4 million. The fact that many Germans were attracted by the NSDAP was not only because of their party programme. The party radiated strength and vitality.

Moreover, the Nazi leaders were young, quite unlike the greying politicians of the established parties. In addition, Hitler’s image as a strong leader appealed to people. He was all set to unite the population and put an end to political discord. The Nazis focused on voters from all walks of life, rather than on just one group, such as the workers or Catholics. They also attracted many people who had never voted before.

Still, in November 1932 the party seemed to be past its peak. The economy was recovering, and the NSDAP received 11% fewer votes than in the July elections earlier that same year. The conservative parties did not manage to win enough votes. They pressured President Paul von Hindenburg to appoint Hitler chancellor. They hoped to form a majority cabinet with the NSDAP. The fact that they expected to use Hitler for their own agenda would turn out to be a fatal underestimation.

The 30th January 1933 was the day when Von Hindenburg gave in to political pressure and appointed Hitler chancellor. Joseph Goebbels, the future Minister of Propaganda for the Nazis wrote in his diary; “It is like a dream. The Wilhelmstraße is ours.” So, although Hitler was not elected by the German people, he still came to power in a legal way.

When Adolph Hitler had supreme power he eliminated all opposition and with his rhetoric and demonised personality was able to sway the masses in Germany to follow him in the re-establishment of German power in the world and the establishment of a thousand year Reich. It was just like President Erdogan’s dream of a resurrected Turkish Ottoman Empire of global proportions. As King Solomon wrote; What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.” (Proverbs 1:9)

When you look at the black and white film footage of the 1930’s and early 1940’s you can see thousands upon thousands of starry eyed Germans both young and old cramming into his rallies to hear their supreme leader sprout his demonically inspired rhetoric about the glory of Germany’s empire and villification of the Jewish people. There is no doubt Adolph Hitler was a demonized man and had supernatural power to enchant and mesmerize the masses in Germany.

Originally he was a failed artist and living in obscurity and not in any way, shape or form a charismatic leader. However, I am persuaded his hate for the Jewish people was the means by which a powerful demonic principality from Satan entered him with the purpose of destroying the Jewish people and by extension Bible believing Christians especially those who opposed his despotic agenda. Most of the Protestant Churches remained silent except for a few faithful ministers of God’s Word who really loved God and loved the Jews.

Of course we all know how Adolph Hitler ended his life and what happened to Germany after it lost the war. It was the Germans that put Jewish children into the ovens but in the end God Himself used the allies to fire bomb German cities like Dresden. When the demonic principality left Hitler he was just a shell of a broken man and a coward who took his own life.

Having said this I am persuaded that the man from Turkey will again rise to power and it may even be at the behest of a weak and fragile Turkish government that lacks strong and decisive leadership. Possibly Turkey will get to the point socially and economically when only a strong leader with Charisma and with a solution to these problems will once again win over the voters.

In the 1930’s people were so enamoured by Adolph Hitler they could not see where he would ultimately take the nation, not to victory but to defeat. If President Erdogan is the Antichrist, and he has all the marks Biblically, then at some point Satan will personally enter into him in the same way he entered into Judas Iscariot, and in the same way the demonic principality entered into Adolph Hitler.

When you compare the character of President Erdogan with that of Adolph Hitler one can see a parallel in their character traits and the possibility of history repeating itself. Bible Prophecy itself is a pattern. You have partial fulfilments of historical events foretold in the Bible that are similar in pattern that together teach us something about the ultimate fulfilment to come.

In the Book of Daniel when God spoke of a future ruler to come in the character of Antiochus Epiphanies (215 BC-164 BC) he was not only writing about Antiochus but also prophesying about the final Antichrist to come at the end of this present age.

Biblically and historically Antiochus was ‘a pattern’ or a major type of the future Antichrist. Daniel also tells us that the final Antichrist will become very strong but not by his own power but by Satanic power and that in the end he will be destroyed, not by human power, but by the power of God. (Daniel 8:24, 25) When this happens not only will the Antichrist be down, but out for the count!

Sources: The New York Times / Anne Frank House