On another thread we were talking about Czar Nicholas II and I came across some info on Nicholas's role in orthodoxy and found this page :http://www.geocities.com/kitezhgrad/prophets/last_days_tsar.html which I'll quote:
'Priest Paul Volmensky wrote that "the murder of Czar Martyr Nicholas II…is a precise indicator that Antichrist is at the door and behind him is the Second Coming of Christ and the Last Judgement. The 'withholder' has been taken out of the way and satan works unbridled."'
Father Gleb Yakunin, wrote, "The meaning for world history of the martyr's death of the Imperial Family, something that likens it to the most significant Biblical events, consists of the fact that here the Constantinopolitan period of the existence of the Church of Christ comes to an end, and a new, martyric, apocalyptic age opens up. It is begun with the voluntary sacrifice of the last anointed Orthodox Emperor and his family."
Archimandrite Constantine of Jordanville offers this opinion: "The fall of Russia signalled a beginning to the pre-Antichrist epoch through which we are currently living. This cataclysm did away with the 'restraining power' in the world, setting Satan free from his temporary ('thousand-year', as the Scriptures allegorically call it) bondage."
What do you all make of this?
What I make from this is the recognition that many believed the Orthodox Christian Empire to be the restraining force keeping the Antichrist back from ruling the world--once the Russian monarchy fell to the Soviets (centuries after the fall of Byzantium), the Orthodox Christian Empire disappeared from the face of the earth. Those of us, like myself, who don't give much credence to the Orthodox Christian Empire theory don't really think the fall of the Russian Empire to be a precursor of the Age of Antichrist.