The antichrist and the false prophet
Hi good friends out there in internet land. I have reviewed the first eight chapters in the book of Revelation in a very detailed way giving the readers many cross references to each verse but due to time and the fact that I must move on to other writing projects in the Bible the remaining chapters (Revelation chapters 9-22) will be completely quoted with some comments at the end of the chapter. I really do desire to cross reference every verse in these chapters but this would take me way to long thus leaving out other vital biblical studies that are also needed and desired to people that are very hungry for the word of God. There will still be many interesting insights after the chapter is quoted so please enjoy the rest of the study in this fascinating last book of the Bible.
(1) "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. (2) 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. (3) 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. (4) And they worshiped 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? (5) 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. (6) And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle and them that dwell in heaven. (7) And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them; and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. (8) And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. (9) If any man have an ear, let him hear. (10) He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity; he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints. (11) And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. (12) And he exercised all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. (13) And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. (14) And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. (15) And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. (16) And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads; (17) And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. (18) Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast; for it is the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six." Revelation 13: 1 - 18.
Revelation chapter 13 describes two individuals that will work in conjunction with each other as dictators but more specifically with high level deception. World rulers almost never take over a country by force. They will explain the problems of the country, gain the trust of the people and then gradually rule from the inside in a settle way and in time becoming apparent that this individual has taken over the nation.
I personally do not believe the antichrist and the false prophet will be resisted all that much when they first make their appearance. The world is in chaos and looking for an answer. Many dictators in the past were worshipped and then believed they were God. Christians and Jews were almost always persecuted. When a remnant of believers in Christ keep their alliance to the one true God in a setting like this they will be labeled as traitors. This prophetic scenario will be a one world government, a one world economy and a one world religion. It will no longer be limited to one country. These are just some of the names the future antichrist is named in the Bible. The Little Horn (Daniel 7:8, 8:9), King of Babylon (Isaiah 14:4), Man of sin/Son of Perdition (1 Thessalonians 2:3), Beast (Revelation 13:1) and Antichrist (1 John 2:18).
Excessive sin will be the problems of the world but he will be persuasive in getting the masses to believe he has the answers. The antichrist is referred to the beast in verse one because he will be ruthless but initially he will not be seen as heartless. He will be seen as a benevolent leader. The beast is emerging from the sea because the ocean is a picture of restless strivings of the nations around the world. The antichrist will rise out of the chaos and confusion of the countries around the world.
He had according to this text 10 horns with 10 crowns on his horns. This represents political power signifying ten regions of the world. The world is now divided into ten regions. Daniel prophesied four world empires to rise in successive order (Babylon, Medo - Persia, Greece and Rome). Revelation chapter 13 shows us the culmination of world history right before the millennial reign of Jesus Christ. The central headcounters of the antichrist will be from the forth empire (Rome) in the area of Europe because this is the same region as ancient Rome. The antichrist will be able to accomplish what no other human leader was trying to accomplish which will be world dominion. He will have help from one other individual.
The antichrist is compared to a leopard, bear and lion which were the features of the first three empires of world history. The beast will get his power and throne from Satan. In verse three the antichrist will receive a mortal wound and be healed by Satan. Most people will think it is a miracle from God. Some people believe this will happen in the beginning of the seven year tribulation and some believe it will happen in the middle. It all depends on which expositor we are listening to but I tend to lean to the beginning of the seven year tribulation. According to verse 10 newly converted believers in Christ will suffer and die for their faith in Jesus Christ.
I explained the first beast but the second beast is spoken of in verse eleven. This man will play the role of enslaving the minds and souls of men. This beast is cut out of the same cloth as the first beast. They are different people but will be of the same kind of person. He will have the same satanic powers. The first beast came out of the sea (antichrist) the second beast will come from the land. Since there are so many different interpretations on this I am going to choose to remain silent on this meaning. The second beast has two uncrowned horns which has nothing to do with political kingdoms. This second beast encourages false religious power. He is called the False Prophet. He will take all religious systems and put them into one. His two uncrowned horns means he will try and imitate the real Lamb who is Jesus Christ. The two beasts will be very convincing in a false way.
According to verse twelve the second beast exercises unlimited authority and forces people to worship the first beast (antichrist). According to verse 13 he performs great miracles. According to verse 14 he deceives the population and forces people to worship the antichrist's image in the temple. According to verse fifteen he kills all the people that will not comply. According to verse fifteen he forces people to receive the mark of the beast. According to verse 13 he makes a fire streak from the sky to the earth which is nothing more than a satanic miracle. It might be holographic technology. One way or another people get deceived. In verse 15 the false prophet gives life to the image of the first beast. He will force people to worship the image or they will be put to death. Since this is the abomination of desolation spoken of in Daniel 9:27 the image will be in the middle of the temple.
There will be a distinguishing way to figure out who the true believers in Jesus Christ are in this world. In that day a person will either be a beast worshiper or allegiance will be given to the one true God who is Jesus Christ. Those who choose the false way will take the mark of the beast in their right hand or their forehead. Anyone who refuses this mark will be cut off from buying or selling anything. In verse fifteen the false prophet gives life to the image of the first beast so we see the devil is imitating the resurrection of Jesus Christ. All Satan can do is imitate but he does not even have the ability to come up with something new on his own. This is why we have to be discerning in what the Bible teachers and not just be hearers of the word but doers of the word. If we understand the real we will never be deceived by the counterfeit.
The mark of the beast is being perfected at this very moment. Satan knows that if anyone receives this mark they will not go to heaven. I will delve into this matter much deeper when I review Revelation chapter fourteen. If you are on this side of the rapture the first thing you will want to do is get redeemed through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Now would be a very good time to accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting the Son of God into your life.
If you just made that decision or if you are already a Christian consider the parable of the ten virgins in Matthew 25:1 - 13. Five were wise and five were foolish. All ten had their lamps (salvation) but only five (the wise virgins) had their oil. This is symbolic of the Holy Spirit. The five foolish virgins just did not do anything. They did not give their lives over to Jesus Christ daily but the wise virgins did along with living pure and trying to do the will of God. This allows the Holy Spirit to work inside their spirit. The wise virgins go up in the rapture but the foolish virgins get left behind. Choose to be a wise virgin. I know foolish virgins and their consciences are generally very seared and they tend to over simplifying the Bible. They are not living for God. The wise virgins are far more tuned into repentance because when they sin before God they feel bad. The foolish virgins just kind of move on and live comfortable with their sins. As you can see there is a vast difference so our lifestyle has to be truly living for Jesus Christ in an honest way. We need to make a honest assessment of our heart and bring it to the throne room of God. To be wise virgins with oil is a life pleasing to God.
God bless you - Bob D.