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Authors: Sigmund Brouwer

The Last Sacrifice

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The Last Sacrifice

Copyright © 2005 by Hank Hanegraaff. All rights reserved.

Cover photograph of man taken by Stephen Vosloo. Copyright © by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved.

Cover photograph of clouds copyright © Steve Geer/iStockphoto. All rights reserved.

Cover photograph of moon copyright © Evgeny Kuklev/iStockphoto. All rights reserved.

Cover photograph of boat copyright © Jakez/iStockphoto. All rights reserved.

Cover image of bronze embellishment copyright © Dusko Jovic/iStockphoto. All rights reserved.

Designed by Daniel Farrell

Edited by James H. Cain III

Scripture taken from the Holy Bible,
New International Version
,
®
NIV
.
®
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica, Inc.

Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
www.zondervan.com
.

This novel is a work of fiction. With the exception of historical persons and facts as noted on the website, names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the authors’ imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons in the present day is entirely coincidental and beyond the intent of either the authors or the publisher.

The Library of Congress has cataloged the original edition as follows:

Hanegraaff, Hank.

The last sacrifice / Hank Hanegraaff, Sigmund Brouwer.

p. cm.

ISBN 978-0-8423-8441-4 (hc)

ISBN 978-0-8423-8442-1 (sc)

1. Bible. N.T. Revelation XIII—History of Biblical events—Fiction. 2. Church history—Primitive and early church, ca. 30-600—Fiction. 3. Rome—History—Nero, 54-68—Fiction. 4. End of the world—Fiction. I. Brouwer, Sigmund, date. II. Title.

PS3608.A714L375 2005

813'.6—dc22 2005016381

Repackage first published in 2012 under ISBN 978-1-4143-6498-8

To Christina.

Your encouragement for the Last Disciple series is inspirational, your enthusiasm infectious.

Calendar Notes

The Romans divided the day into twelve hours. The first hour,
hora prima,
began at sunrise, approximately 6 a.m. The twelfth hour,
hora duodecima,
ended at sunset, approximately 6 p.m.

hora prima
: first hour: 6–7 a.m.

hora secunda
: second hour: 7–8 a.m.

hora tertiana
: third hour: 8–9 a.m.

hora quarta
: fourth hour: 9–10 a.m.

hora quinta
: fifth hour: 10–11 a.m.

hora sexta
: sixth hour: 11 a.m.–12 p.m.

hora septina
: seventh hour: 12–1 p.m.

hora octava
: eighth hour: 1–2 p.m.

hora nonana
: ninth hour: 2–3 p.m.

hora decima
: tenth hour: 3–4 p.m.

hora undecima
: eleventh hour: 4–5 p.m.

hora duodecima
: twelfth hour: 5–6 p.m.

The New Testament refers to hours in a similar way. Thus, when we read in Luke 23:44, “It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour,” we understand that this period of time was from the hour before noon to approximately 3 p.m.

The Romans divided the night into eight watches.

Watches before midnight:
Vespera, Prima fax, Concubia, Intempesta
.

Watches after midnight:
Inclinatio, Gallicinium, Conticinium, Diluculum
.

The Romans’ days of the week were Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, and Saturn.

The months of the Hebrew calendar are Nisan, Iyar, Sivan, Tammuz, Av, Elul, Tishri, Heshvan, Kislev, Tevet, Shevat, Adar I, and Adar II. In AD 65, the date 13 Av was approximately August 1.

Dramatis Personae

Alypia:
Wife of Lucius Bellator; former lover of Maglorius; stepmother of Valeria and Quintus

Amaris:
Wife of Simeon Ben-Aryeh

Ananias:
High priest; father of Eliazar

Annas the Younger:
Former high priest

Atronius Pavo:
Captain of the ship carrying John and Vitas to Alexandria

Bernice:
Queen of the Jews; sister of Agrippa II

Boaz:
A Pharisee of high standing

Caius Sennius Ruso:
Wealthy senator; friend of John

Chara:
Wife of Strabo

Chayim:
Son of Simeon Ben-Aryeh; in Rome as a “hostage”

Cosconius Betto:
Sailing master on the ship carrying John and Vitas; brother of Kaeso

Eleazar:
Governor of the Temple; son of Ananias

Falco:
Prominent Roman citizen

Gaius Calpurnius Piso:
Plotted to kill Nero

Gaius Cestius Gallus:
Governor of Syria

Gaius Ofonius Tigellinus:
Prefect of the praetorian guard; member of Nero’s inner circle

Gallus Sergius Damian:
Slave hunter; brother of Vitas

Gallus Sergius Vitas:
Famed general of the Roman army; former member of Nero’s inner circle; husband of Sophia; brother of Damian

Gessius Florus:
Roman procurator of Judea

Helius:
Nero’s secretary; member of Nero’s inner circle

Hezron:
Famed rabbi in Rome; father of Leah

Issachar, son of Benjamin:
Silversmith in Alexandria

Jerome:
Slave of Damian

John, son of Zebedee:
Last disciple of Jesus of Nazareth

Joseph Ben-Matthias:
Prominent citizen in upper city Jerusalem

Leah:
Daughter of Hezron and a follower of the Christos

Lucullus:
Roman commander on Patmos

Maglorius:
Former gladiator; servant in the Bellator household

Malka:
Old, blind woman Quintus lives with in Jerusalem

Nahum:
Glassblower in Jerusalem; husband of Leeba; father of Raanan

Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus:
Roman emperor; persecutor of the followers of the Christos

Nigilius Strabo:
Farmer on the island of Patmos; husband of Chara

Quintus Valerius Messalina:
Seven-year-old son of Lucius Bellator; in hiding in Jerusalem

Simeon Ben-Aryeh:
Member of the Sanhedrin; escaped Jerusalem; fugitive of Rome with Sophia

Sophia:
Wife of Vitas; fugitive of Rome with Ben-Aryeh; a follower of the Christos

Sporus:
Nero’s young lover

Valeria Messalina:
Daughter of Lucius Bellator; in hiding in Jerusalem

Part I

Prologue

Rome

Capital of the Empire

They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.

—Revelation 12:11

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