THE BOOK OF REVELATION
~ The Revelation of Jesus Christ
Revelation Chapter 13
As the visions continued to unfold, John found himself standing upon the sand of the sea. Now remember that the Apostle John was not literally transported to the seashore. He was simply taken control by the Spirit of God and shown a series of visions. Contrary to some interpretations, at no time was John ever transported to any particular time in the future. He was just shown a series of visions of future events.
The First Beast
Verse 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.
Standing upon the sand of the sea, John 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. As in Daniel's beasts visions (in Daniel 7), the beasts in John's visions depict the carnal and earthly minds of the Gentile kingdoms of this world, as characterized by the downward look of the heads of the beasts. Similar to the wild beasts in Daniel's vision the first Beast in John's vision also rose up out of the sea. The oddity of this Beast actually gave the Apostle John a summarized view of the whole manifestation of what had already existed for some time even as it would exhibit the final form and the very end of the mystery of iniquity that the Apostle Paul had written in 2 Thessalonians 2:7.
A little explanation is necessary here before we proceed further. Like all the other visions, there were always certain prominent features that caught the attention of the Apostle John. In the vision of the First Beast, the ten horns and the head that bore these horns caught John's attention. It is obvious that the ten horns were not distributed unevenly on the seven heads; rather they were all found on only one head, which was the seventh head. It does not mean that John saw it as the seventh head to appear on the Beast since all the seven heads were on the Beast as it rose out of the sea. The seventh head represents the seventh and the last Gentile World Empire. It is interesting to note that this seventh head was actually the first head to appear from the water as the Beast rose up out of the sea. The original text renders the first verse: And I saw a beast coming up out of the sea, having ten horns and seven heads, and on his horns ten diadems, and upon his heads names of blasphemy.” This shows that John saw the horns first and, of course, the head that bore them, and then the other six heads.
The prophetic vision did not deal so much with each head of the Beast as it did with the seventh head and its ten crowned-horns; yet it gave an overview of the whole Beast ONE Beast, not seven. The descriptive phrase, his mouth as the mouth of a lion, in verse 2 clearly refers to the mouth of the seventh head and not that of all the seven heads. This seventh head with ten crowned-horns symbolizes the last and final Gentile World Empire which represents the restoration of the imperial power of the Roman Empire. This ten-kingdom empire covers the sphere of the territory of Western Europe. Its religious power is the Papacy of the Roman Catholic Church. This was even shown in the dream of Nebuchadnezzar where the fourth empire (that is, the Roman Empire) was divided into legs of iron (Western and Eastern Divisions) and further divided into feet and toes of part iron and part clay (Dan.2). The ten toes correspond to the ten horns of the Beast. It is this last empire of the Babylonian system that will be utterly destroyed by a stone cut without hands and which will become a great mountain, a great kingdom the kingdom of the Lord upon the earth. Yes, the Holy Roman Empire shall be revived in a different form only to be utterly destroyed.
[Note: Some preachers teach that this Beast is the same Fourth (nondescript) Beast that Daniel saw in his vision (Dan.7). They believe that the Fourth Beast, which was the Roman Empire, either had evolved into a creature with seven heads (the seven heads being seven [different] forms of governments) by the time it was shown to John or would begin to evolve into such a creature from the time of John. Such interpretations do not make sense because animals do not grow heads as they would horns (as in Daniel 7:8). If seven [different] forms of governments were to be established on the Roman Beast through time, then John should have seen the Beast developing heads. However, the Beast did not evolve from one form to another. In fact, the vision shows a beast with seven heads and ten horns; that is, it was 'born' with those features. And John's attention was drawn mainly towards the 7th head with its ten crowned-horns.]
Now, the sea speaks of the masses of confused and disordered life of the Gentile nations (cf. Isa.17:12; 57:20; Jude 1:13). In Daniel 7:2, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea represent the four forces of political, economic, military and religious powers by which kingdoms have attained power in their struggle and strive against the turbulent seas of peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues (Rev.17:15). And history tells us that civilization with all its conflicts and revolutions started in the Middle East. From there it spread quickly westward. Hence, this Beast rises up from that region of the world the prophetic world which is commonly known as the Old World.
Now, the great red dragon in heaven (in chapter 12) is this Beast on earth. This Beast reflects on earth what John saw in heaven concerning the seven Gentile world-governments (from the beginning of history to the end) that the great red dragon (with seven crowned-heads and ten horns) would embody to prevent God from carrying out His plan for Israel and the rest of mankind. As the single colossal image in Nebuchadnezzar's dream (Dan.2) symbolized different empires, so does this one single Beast. As John's eyes traversed the Beast from head to head, he was surveying the dominion of the Gentile world from its beginning to its end. The seven heads symbolize the successive empires of Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, Rome and Papal Rome. The last was also the eighth, and is of the seven (Rev.17:11) because it did not really die though it had received a deadly wound during the Age of the Reformation (verse 3).
Notice that the crowns seen on the heads in chapter 12 are now found on the ten horns. This shows the nature of the Beast in its final stage under the spirit of Romanism the last head with ten crowned-horns (or ten kingdoms/nations); a very complex intriguing Beast indeed, one that was, and is not, and yet is (Rev.17:8). This seventh and last Gentile Empire will not only be a political and religious empire like the six other heads, but it will be the most powerful one because it will be controlled by a powerful political and religious institution, a great whore the Roman Church as shown to John in a later vision (in chapter 17). [Note: It is important to know that the great whore is not the Beast.] The Devil will completely empower this final world system (a one world politico-religious system) to seek and destroy Israel and the saints of God. Beloved, I want you to know that the spirit of Romanism (besides the spirit of deceit or false prophecies) is the most powerful spirit in the world; it is more powerful than the spirit of Communism. While Communism declines, Romanism thrives.
Written upon the heads of this Beast were names of blasphemy or blasphemous names. Truly, it is not uncommon to find in history how the Almighty God had been vilified by the rulers of these great earthly empires with their impious claims to divine titles. They simply claimed to be equal with God on earth. God certainly hated them because Israel was one of the nations subjected to their impious rules and blasphemous claims. But when the spirit from the bottomless pit comes upon the seventh head it would make it the most blasphemous of all empires.
The ten crowned-horns are on the 7th head of the Beast. The Prophet Daniel saw a somewhat similar beast in his night visions in the days of Belshazzar, king of Babylon:
Dan.7:1: In the first year of Belshazzar king of Babylon Daniel had a dream and visions of his head upon his bed: then he wrote the dream, and told the sum of the matters.
Dan.7:2 Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea.
Dan.7:3 And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another.
Dan.7:4: The first was like a lion, and had eagle's wings: I beheld till the wings thereof were plucked, and it was lifted up from the earth, and made stand upon the feet as a man, and a man's heart was given to it.
Dan.7:5: And behold another beast, a second, like to a bear, and it raised up itself on one side, and it had three ribs in the mouth of it between the teeth of it: and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh.
Dan.7:6: After this I beheld, and lo another, like a leopard, which had upon the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it.
Dan.7:7: After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns.
Dan.7:8: I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.
Notice that the diverse beast had no crown on its ten horns. And just as the fourth beast that Daniel saw had ten horns and was very diverse, dreadful, terrible and exceedingly strong (as compared to the first three beasts: the lion which represents the Babylonian Empire, the bear which represents the Medo-Persian Empire, and the leopard which represents the Grecian Empire) so had the Beast that John saw in its final stage. But in Daniel's prophecy the nondescript beast was fulfilled, in history, in the Fall of the Roman Empire. The little horn with eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things refers unmistakably to the Pope for he has been known to boast of great things and to rack up what his carnal eyes could see. He was the Bishop of Rome who claimed the title of 'Bishop of Bishops' some sixty years after the death of Constantine the Great in 337 A.D. The nature of this little horn was not political but religious; hence, it was not considered as the eleventh horn. In 476 A.D., when the Roman Empire fell completely to the barbaric tribes who invaded and dismembered it into ten provinces (horns) Anglo-Saxons, Alemanni, Heruli, Vandals, Ostrogoths, Visigoths, Suevi, Lombards, Burgundians and Franks, the little horn came up and, by 538 A.D., uprooted three horns the Vandals, Ostrogoths and Heruli, and completely destroyed them. Later, between 600-754 A.D., when there were again ten kingdoms, the same little horn uprooted three of the ten horns Rome, Lombards and Ravenna. The powers of these three kingdoms were ceded to the then ruling Pope at the beginning of their temporal kingdoms. Incidentally, in the 12th Century there were also three kings, Henry IV, Frederick I and Philip Augustus (or Philip II) who, in confrontation with the Pope in their days, were brought into submission by the latter.
The religious little horn still exists in our day, and it is just as powerful and carnal. He is the man of sin, the son of perdition (2 Thess.2:2-3), a very blasphemous man indeed. Though the Old Roman Empire is long gone, the spirit of Romanism still lives because of the power of that foul little horn. And the multifarious beast that was dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly has been, and still is, diversifying up to this very day. And soon a new scenario of this nondescript beast will emerge where the man of sin will once again take control of the Beast (system) and ride on it. That was what was shown to John on the Isle of Patmos, although in a different composite Beast.
The ten crowned-horns in John's vision represent the ten kingdoms or nations of Western Europe which will form the political power base for the Beast in its final stage when the Great Serpent is cast out and cast down onto the earth. It means that Satan is incarnated in the Antichrist as he rides on this Beast in the last 42 months of the 70th Week of Daniel (Rev.18:3; cf. Dan.9:27). The ten horns on the Beast will be the political arm of the Roman Catholic Church as they were during the days of the Holy Roman Empire. These ten horns will be united under one government as the last Gentile World Empire under the control of the Roman Church. But none of these political horns will be uprooted for the head of the great religious whore will be the one who will crown the horns. That's right, the Beast through the Pope will give them the prestige and authority to be recognized as a world power to rule with him (Rev.17:12). And the great whore will ride on the Beast!
Since 1948, the countries of Western Europe have grouped themselves to form the Common Market, formerly known as the European Economic Community. The group is communist in form though not in ideology, such as that of Marx and Lenin. In 1993, the name European Union was adopted. There are presently 12 members Belgium, Luxembourg, Holland, Italy, France, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Denmark, Spain, Greece and Portugal. Austria, Cyprus, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland have applied for membership in the Union.
Due to centuries of upheaval, the European nations are still in a tumult. They wanted to rule the world. So they fought not only among themselves but also against other nations in the world the Americans, the Africans, the Indians and the Orientals. However, in 1948 the Word of God began to come into fulfillment for Israel and other nations which started to put on leaves for the Second Advent of Christ (Matt.24:32-35; Lk.21:29-33). As conquered nations became independent, the European nations began to try and unite themselves. The Vatican has had a hand in this task to fulfill her own ambition.
The European Union (E.U.) is not in full agreement and perfect unity at this time for the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken (Dan.2:42). Some of these nations are having misgivings about the E.U. and will either pull out of it or withdraw their applications. Though at present the E.U. has more than ten members, it will end up with only ten members. The Prophetic Word is clear there are only ten horns and they shall receive power in that hour when the spirit of that foul Beast shall come up out of the bottomless pit (Rev.17:12).
Verse 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.
Notice that the Beast was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion. Prophet Daniel saw these three beasts before he saw the fourth diverse beast in his visions. These three beasts in Daniel's visions represent the historical empires of Babylon, Medo-Persia and Greece respectively. Their characters and properties were symbolized in the Beast that John saw. This conveys to us the great depth of strength and energy of the Beast it has the swiftness of conquest of the leopard, the prowess and tenacity of purpose of the bear, and the voracious, commanding force and power of the lion. The mouth of a lion also signifies a proud, vicious and confused voice (opinion) of the Babylonian spirit in the Beast. It is also obvious that parts or all of the territories of these historical empires would come under the control of the Beast that is yet to be as recorded in Daniel chapter 7, verse 12: As concerning the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away: yet their lives were prolonged for a season and time. Though the heathenistic and evil spirits of the three beasts live on, the empires (Babylonian, Medo-Persian and Grecian) will never rise again.
Now, besides all these, the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. What Christ had refused to accept from Satan, who offered Him all the kingdoms of this world and their glory (Matt.4:8-10), this Beast will readily accept. He will pull together the many nations in that region of the world and make a covenant with them for seven years. No doubt, for economic reasons, the ten horns (European Union) will agree to this covenant. Yes, the Beast will dominate the prophetic world. And, when the Devil is cast out and cast down onto the earth, in the middle of the 70th Week of Daniel, he will incarnate in, and be one with, the Beast as the Antichrist (the Beast-man) the man of sin. It will be the most destructive of all beasts (empires) that have ever existed. Hence, the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority in order to use him as an instrument of his diabolical wrath against the seed of the woman and the saints of God.
My friend, something great is coming to shake this world. And when it's over the Pope will step in as the Prince of Peace and you will see the Beast establish itself as John saw it. The last and most powerful head the Revived and Revised power of the old Holy Roman Empire will come into existence. But the spirit of Romanism will rear its ugly head when the Pope shall break the covenant in the midst of the seven years and shall begin to rule with an iron fist (cf. Dan.9:27). This will happen when the Dragon (Satan) gives his seat and authority to the Pope. That's right. The Pope will be the Devil's anointed. John saw this same Beast depicted in scarlet-color, in Revelation chapter 17, with the Roman Catholic Church sitting on it. And the head of the Roman Catholic Church is a man. [Note: It is not only important to know that the great whore is not the Beast and the Beast is not the Pope (the Antichrist), it is also important to understand the relationship between the Antichrist and the Beast.]
The Wounded Head
Verse 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.
John noticed a head that was wounded to death but the deadly wound was miraculously healed and this astounded the people of the world. Though this pointed to the future ahead of John's time, it is a historical fact to us. What was the wound of this head and which head was it?
This wounded head was clearly the 7th head Papal Rome (or the Holy Roman Empire). It was the only head (or empire) with such a peculiarity about it. That was why God showed John this Beast in its final stage and how the wounded head was revived. The wounding of the head could be traced back to the period of the Dark Ages when the 7th head the Holy Roman Empire ruled the Western European world. It was a dark period when people were basically indoctrinated by the spirit of Roman Catholicism into burning religious candles together with all sorts of superstitious teachings. With that, everything that was good came to a standstill. There were millions upon millions of people put to death just because they would not bow to the superstitions of the Roman Catholic Church. There was no freedom. According to a Catholic cardinal who wrote the book 'The Catholic Church, The Renaissance and Protestantism' which is sanctioned by the Church, The Catholic Church has a horror of blood. Nevertheless when confronted by heresy she has recourse to force, to corporal punishment, to torture. She creates tribunals like the Inquisition. She calls the laws of the state to her aid. Especially did she act thus in the 16th Century with regard to Protestants. In France, under Francis I and Henry II, in England under Mary Tudor, she tortured the heretics. (pages 182-184). As J. A. Wylie wrote (in 'The History of Protestantism') the noon of the papacy was the midnight of the world.
Then in 1517, Martin Luther came. He preached that the just shall live by faith. His 'protesting' against the errors of the Roman Church annoyed and antagonized the Papal and clerical offices. But the king of Germany and the people stood behind Luther and a reformation soon began to sweep Europe. People began to experience the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. They were set free from the bondage of dogmas and man-made doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church. This broke the power of the Roman Catholic Church and the Holy Roman Empire began to die from this deadly wound to the head. All over Europe, other Reformers, like Calvin, Knox, and Zwingli further slashed at the wounded head with the Sword of the Spirit as they spread the Gospel throughout Europe.
However, the Papacy still had control over certain other nations. But the political power of the Roman Catholic Church was weakened with the start of the French Revolution in 1789. In 1798, the French general, Berthier, marched his armies into Rome and pulled the then Pope off his throne, carried him away into exile and confiscated all the properties of the Roman Church. In 1804, the French (of whom many were Roman Catholics) chose Napoleon Bonaparte as their emperor. Napoleon defied and humiliated the Pope (Pius VII) when he crowned himself as Emperor of the French during the coronation ceremony in the cathedral. In 1808, Napoleon took the Vatican State and seized the Pope, and later deported him to France. This politico-military wound inflicted by Napoleon ended the power of the Papacy. Together with the spiritual wounding, the head began to die. But later, another beast came along and the deadly wound was healed. That was what John saw how the first Beast was revived after it had lost all its strength and power.
Verse 4: And they worshipped 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?
How will the people worship the Dragon (Satan)? They will worship him through the Beast system, of course. The Scripture here is not referring to the pagans or the heathens in the world; rather It refers to those who revere the Roman Beast. Even today, many Church-goers are indirectly worshipping the Devil because they are bound to a church system. In practically every organized 'church service' Satan is being worshipped. Here is the subtilty of the Devil: Get the worshippers to be religious and make them put their trust implicitly in the tenets of faith of their respective denominations. No wonder, today, most religious denominational minds are like concrete, all mixed up and permanently set. They are so programmed with church activities and traditional teachings that they could not be awakened to the revelation of the Word of God. In this endtime hour the True Church of Jesus Christ are groups of born again, Spirit-filled believers in divine order; they are walking in the light, not in darkness (traditions) and contending for the faith that was once delivered to the saints (1 Jhn.1:5-7; Jude 1:3; cf. Gal.3:27-28; Eph.4:8-14).
Yes, in that day, many people will revere the Beast just as they are doing now. It's the spirit of Romanism, that's what it is. They will look to it and 'bow down' to it saying, Who is like unto the Beast? Who is able to challenge (oppose, battle, overcome) him? It is the greatest thing that mankind has ever had because he has brought the nations of the prophetic world together. This is God's doing. It is God.” If they only know that the Devil is behind all of it.
Verse 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.
Verse 6: And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
Now, the Beast has the mouth of a lion. Obviously, it is the mouth of a man who will head the empire. Remember that the Beast is under the control of the Roman Catholic Church, headed by the Pope. Though the Beast and the Man are separate entities, they are as one. Truly, the Beast-man, the Antichrist, will boast of great things even to the extent of blaspheming God and things divine without hesitation. Remember, it has the mouth of a lion and mankind will stand in awe and reverence as he speaks. But the worst time of trouble for the world will be during the second half of the 70th Week of Daniel's prophecy a short time of forty and two months. By then the Beast will have gotten his power, seat and authority from the Dragon. That will also be the time when the Devil would incarnate in the man of sin, the son of perdition. Although he has already usurped God's Authority and misused God's Holy Name as his own, the Devil-incarnate will surely misuse It even more. Whatever false teachings he has formulated out of God's Divine Word, he will continue to do so and more. He will kill his opponents and order his faithful followers to do likewise, teaching them to believe that they are doing God's will just like he had done during the Dark Ages. Yes, blasphemies upon blasphemies will pour forth from the mouth of the Beast against the Holy God, His Name, His People and even all things heavenly. But remember, God permits all these as He is the One Who has given unto him that power and foul mouth for that short time of 42 months (Rev.12:12).
[Note: Today many Christians, both the clergy and the laity, who once believed that the man in the Papal Throne would be the Antichrist, have now rejected this truth. They have been bewitched and turned away from the truth by a strong delusion of Satan to believe a lie that the Antichrist will be 'someone else' other than the Pope. And that 'someone else' will not be known to the Christians until he is revealed just before the beginning of the 70th Week of Daniel. My, how foolish can these Christians be! Wouldn't it be too late? It will certainly be too late for them, for now they even believe that they must go through the period of Great Tribulation to suffer the wrath of the Antichrist. 'O naked and wretched Laodicean, thy riches and thy pride hath blinded thee, whereupon thou recognized not the day of God's visitation nor understood the Word and the Work of thy God.']
Verse 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.
The saints, whom the Beast will make war with and to overcome them, are those who will be left upon the earth because they have failed to be watchful and prayerful in their preparation for the 'catching away' (rapture) of the Bride. They have failed to be ready because they do not have the ear to hear what the Spirit of God is saying to the churches in this present hour. Many of these saints are deceived into accepting a denominational faith so much so that they are practically worshipping the system. But, thank God, He has not forsaken His True Church, His ordained Bride. As opposed to the ministry of organized Christianity, we are given in these last days a certain sound in the true Voice of the Spirit of God's Holy Word through the ordained Five-fold Ministry of Christ Jesus. Amen.
All kindreds, tongues and nations of the world will feel the power of the Beast but not all nations will be under his control. Remember, the Beast rises up out of the sea. The Beast will only have complete power and control over the prophetic world. Most nations in the Far East will not be affected. Certainly, the communist nations such as China and Vietnam, and perhaps even democratic countries like India and Japan, will not bow down to the Beast. These are some of the Kings of the East which have their places in God's prophecies (Rev.16:12). However, the Beast might have power over nations, such as the Philippines, Canada and the Latin American countries, which are strongly influenced by the spirit of Roman Catholicism.
Verse 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.
With the Devil's power behind the Beast, many of those who are under its control and influence will worship the Beast. There will also be 'Christian people' bowing down to this Beast. Those who worship the Beast will forfeit their lives, just as God had foreknown they would before the world began. Those who will not bow to the Beast will be judged according to their attitudes toward God's people when they stand before Christ Jesus Who will be sitting upon His Throne of Glory. (Read Matthew 25.)
Verse 9: If any man have an ear, let him hear.
Do you have an ear to hear? The prophetic revelation of God's Word is not simply revealed to just anybody in the world but only to those who are Christ's disciples, to those who are babes in Christ and willing to learn (cf. Mk.4:11; Matt.11:25). Are you willing to learn?
Verse 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.
Firstly, this is God's warning: to the persecutors that they shall receive retribution in kind and to those who resort to carnal weapons that they shall likewise suffer the same consequence. Secondly, this is His prophetic admonition: endure and maintain a patient trust in God. Maranatha!
The Second Beast
Verse 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.
This Second Beast comes up out of the earth in contrast to the First Beast which rises out of the seas. This great nation or kingdom, instead of overthrowing other powers to establish itself, must arise out of a terra firma previously unoccupied. Therefore, it could not be found in the Old World of Biblical time. Unlike the Beast with seven heads and ten crowned-horns, this beast has only one head and two lamb-like horns showing that it represents only one kingdom. There will be no succession of kingdoms. The prophetic symbol of this beast points unmistakably to the United States of America.
Notice that the beast had two horns like a lamb which is often wrongly taught as a lamb with two horns. The U.S.A. is not symbolized by the lamb. Lambs and sheep are timid and helpless animals. They are easily frightened by the slightest movement of things around them and are defenceless when attacked. In fact, the word beast is from the Greek word therion which means a wild beast. There is only one animal which fits the descriptions in this prophecy, and that is the bison (sometimes called the American Buffalo, which is a misnomer). In the early 17th Century, about the time of the arrival of the first Europeans to this New World, it was estimated that there were about 50 million bisons thundering across the plains of the continent of America. The bisons are large and strong animals, weighing as much as 900 kilograms (or 2000 pounds) when fully grown. When threatened, the herd will bunch up and the bulls will face outward to fight and defend themselves. This is the U.S.A. And the seed of the United States was sown when the persecuted Christians fled from Europe and migrated to this New World in 1620 in search of a new life. These migrants were determined to establish a government upon the broad foundation of civil and religious freedom symbolized by the two horns. Notice, the horns are not crowned, therefore they are not kingdoms. But they are specifically likened to the horns of a lamb, indicating gentle and benevolent powers. The horns do not have a separate identity from the overall structure of the beast. In 1754, John Wesley said this, concerning the second beast, He is not yet come, though he cannot be far off, for he must appear about the end of the first beast's power. Through much hardship this second beast sprang up like a plant on the 4th of July, 1776, about three decades before Papal Romanism, the 7th Head of the first Beast, received its political death blow. Republicanism and Protestantism were the fundamental principles adopted by the nation. That was the spirit of Americanism.
However, this second beast soon began to spake as a dragon.
Unfortunately, the powerful American empire began to decay politically and religiously through each passing decade. Satan has been undermining it by using those citizens (with the spirit of Romanism) who hold high positions in the government especially the legislative and judicial bodies. Their dishonest actions gave the lie to the liberal and peaceful principles which were supposed to be the foundation of its policy. By and by, secular power began to intrude on the Church. Inevitably, intolerance and persecution prevailed. Soon the State and Church became one. And the spirit of Americanism began to change. It began to speak like a dragon.
The Image of the Beast
Verse 12: And he exerciseth 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.
Verse 13: And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men,
Verse 14: And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the 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.
Speaking as a dragon and exercising all the power of the first Beast before him, this second beast is becoming sacerdotal; its words and acts are devilish. With the influence of 25% of the population who embrace Roman Catholicism, Americanism is becoming more like Romanism, bowing in the direction of Rome. It is Protestant-Americanism that is getting the world to look to the first Beast and to honour and revere it. It is able to do so because U.S.A. has the means, the power and the technological knowledge to perform great wonders of calling fire upon the earth. The U.S.A. has many miracles inventions (such as the automobiles, radios, telephones, televisions, computers, etc.) for the world, but none is as powerful and awesome to the eyes as the miracle of the fiery bombs, missiles and other destructive weapons. With the exception of the kings of the east and some other nations, the rest of the world are looking upon him as the leader and policeman to bring about a New World Order. And on 18th of February, 1991, President George Bush offered that leadership in his State of the Union address: It is a big idea: a new world order, where diverse nations are drawn together in common cause... only the United States has both the moral standing and the means to back it up.
How did the first Beast receive healing for its wounded head?
During the 19th and 20th Centuries, aggressive movements arose to foster world peace. Liberal theology and the social gospel, with their emphasis on the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man, helped in the promotion of world peace. Before World War I, the Western European Nations were trying hard to hold themselves together as one, even by intermarriage, while the U.S.A. was negotiating peace, supported mainly by the churches. However, it could not unite according to Prophet Daniel's interpretation of the Ten Toes in the visions of Nebuchadnezzar's colossal image: And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters' clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay. And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay (Dan.2:41-43). So, World War I broke out, followed by World War II a few years later. It was at this time that the United States rose to power.
When World War II was over, Europe was in ruins. All over Europe, the nations were financially strapped. But the second beast, with two horns like a lamb, came to its aid. The U.S.A., with the Church and State, pumped in billions of dollars. They formed NATO and even stationed their armed forces to protect them from Russia, so they thought. But Russia was eyeing something else Israel. Russia will be destroyed after it has destroyed the United States (read Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39).
So, with financial and military support, the first Beast was healed politically. Between the two World Wars, several nations were sending ambassadors to the Vatican. The Vatican City is an independent state within the city of Rome. These nations recognized the power of the Pope over millions of people, so they tried to seek his favour. And with the goodwill of the Protestant churches of the United States the religious wound of the Roman Beast was also healed. Just as apostasy in the early church of Rome led them to seek the aid of the civil government, apostasy in the church of the United States will prepare the way for the erection of the image to the Beast.
What is the Image of the Beast?
An image is the likeness, the resemblance, of the real thing. So, this Image of the Beast will be something like the Roman Beast, just as the saying goes Like father, like son; like mother, like daughter.
Because of the wide diversity of beliefs held by the various denominational churches, the idea of the need for unity arose in the early 20th Century. To secure such a union, the leading churches of the United States formulated an ecumenical plan in which they agreed to set aside all doctrinal differences and to share the common beliefs in some basic doctrines. With this ecumenical move, the Image of the Beast was being erected, and by 1948, this spirit of Ecumenism had established itself and had brought about One World One Church the Image of the Beast!
There are two bodies the World Council of Churches (W.C.C.) and the National Council of Churches (N.C.C) which have the blessings of the Papacy. The headquarters of the W.C.C. is a stone's throw away from the headquarters of the E.U. in Brussels, Belgium. The Roman Catholic church sends observers to the meetings of the World Council of Churches although it is not a member of the Council. The Roman church has done a great deal to promote ecumenism through the work of the Second Vatican Council (held from 1962 to 1965) that was convened by Pope John XXIII. So far, his successors, Paul VI and John Paul II, have continued to support the movement towards unity. Their ulterior motive is to bring all the Protestant churches back to the Church of Rome. The Roman Church is MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH as revealed by the angel to the Apostle John in a later vision (Rev.17:5). So, the Harlot Daughters (the Protestant denominational churches) must return to their Harlot Mother.
Besides the Roman Catholic Church, there were other observers at the meetings of the W.C.C.. They were the Buddhists, Sikhs, Moslems and Hindus. Malcolm Muggeridge, an observer at a W.C.C. meeting at Uppsala, Sweden, had this to say: One may be excused for noting that institutional Christianity is inexorably extinguishing itself. At Uppsala, one could clearly see that they agreed on almost everything as they believed almost nothing. They reminded me of a group of drunks that I observed in a country Pub, in my youth. Individually they would have fallen over, but collectively they managed to remain upright.
Today, in most of the churches, we see plenty of religious pomposity of form and ceremony singing, shouting, dancing, speaking in tongues, etc., but none of the Apostolic teachings of the Truth and the power of the Holy Spirit. The Bible does not encourage the Believer to stay and try to improve such situation in his church, but It warns him in no uncertain terms to turn away from it (2 Tim.3:1-5).
In 1972, Michael Ramsey, who made ecclesiastical history by preaching in Manhattan's Roman Catholic St.Patrick's Cathedral at a service attended by Terence Cardinal Cooke and Archbishop Iakovos of the Greek Church of North and South America (TIME Feb.,7), said, I can foresee the day when all Christians might accept the Pope as Presiding Bishop. Perspectives change, and we must give the bag a good shake and see what happens.” Even notable and influential churchmen speak of it with great favour. The Evangelist Billy Graham was quoted in a German newspaper as saying, that it would be a great tragedy if the ecumenical policies of the late Pope John were reversed. Pope John brought an entirely new era to the world. It would be a great tragedy if the cardinals elect a pope who would react against the policies of Pope John and bring back the walls between the Christian faiths. With such assurance, we are going to see (or have already seen) an endless procession of sincere people, their minds befogged by the spirit of delusion, join the wedding procession to the union with Rome. The only ones who will escape this delusion will be those who possess the mind of the Lord Jesus Christ the Word of God, and not church theologies and traditions.
Protestant-America is fallen, is fallen! It has become the voice of false prophecies! This second beast has gone into apostasy and has built an image to the first Beast! Americanism has turned Ecumenism into Romanism! It is a false prophet!
Verse 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 that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.
Though the image has already been made, it has yet to be a One World Church; the second beast has yet to breathe life into it. At this present moment, the evil presence of this image is being felt as it goes about tackling the relations between the various churches and the organisations of all the other religions and ideologies; even dialogues are being held among the different religions of the world. With the State and Church as one and through the legislative power of the United States, the false prophetic spirit of Americanism may soon give life to the image of the Beast. When it does, the image will have the power and authority to dictate and control the lives of people. Every denomination, sect and group that affiliates with it will pledge full allegiance to it and submit to its dictates just as the Roman Catholic people are to the Roman Church. It will say what 'true religion' is and what is not, and force people to either bow to the beastly union or die. By then the Roman Beast will have financial control of the prophetic world. The 'money world' will be there; it will no longer be in New York or Tokyo. So, the whole world will have to look towards the Beast. And a fourth part of the world the Christian world will feel the power of the Beast in that dark hour (Rev.6:8). Of course, the Far Eastern nations will not be so affected. Remember, they have their place in Bible prophecies.
There is no doubt that the irresistible effort of the Ecumenical Movement to form a World Church will culminate in the acceptance of the Pope that man of sin, the son of perdition as its head. And from that he will be the head of a one-world system. Malachi Martin, an expert on the Catholic Church, a former Jesuit and professor at the Vatican's Pontifical Biblical Institute, wrote in his book 'The Keys Of This Blood' which was published in 1990:
Willing or not, ready or not, we are all involved The competition is about who will establish the first one-world system of government that has ever existed in the society of nations. It is about who will hold and wield the dual power of authority and control over each of us as individuals and over all of us together as a community Our way of life as individuals and as citizens of the nations; our families and our jobs; our trade and commerce and money; our educational systems and our religions and our cultures; even the badges of our national identity, which most of us have always taken for granted all will have been powerfully and radically altered forever. No one can be exempted from its effects. No sector of our lives will remain untouched (Page 15).
(Pope John Paul II) insists that men have no reliable hope of creating a viable geopolitical system unless it is on the basis of Roman Catholic Christianity (Page 492).
Beloved, remember, the only ones who will escape this delusion will be those who have the mind of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Word of God.
The Mark of the Beast
Verse 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:
Verse 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.
Cashless transactions have been, or are being, implemented in many countries around the world. There are several cashless ways in transacting business. One of the systems is the use of a computerized laser beam to scan a 'bar code' of numbers on a card and the transaction will be debited from the buyer's bank account and credited to the seller's bank account. But think of a possible scenario in which a world government uses the laser to inscribe an invisible and indelible mark or number upon the people's forehead or arm and forces them to buy and sell only at designated commercial centres which are electronically computerized to read the mark.
Although such a cashless system has not yet been implemented, the stage is set for the Bible prophecy to be fulfilled. There is coming a day when all the currencies of the world will be worthless. The people's credit cards, smartcards and whatever 'cash' cards will be useless and obsolete. They will need a mark on them before they can buy and sell anything. That will be the day when the Beast comes under the control of the Roman Church and the Pope who will wield absolute reins of power (Rev.17:3). The mark will either be the number or the name of the Beast. That will be in the middle of the 70th Week of Daniel.
However, we are certainly not dealing with an outward mark. Spiritually, the Church World is bowing to the Roman Church. When PROTESTANT-AMERICANISM the FALSE PROPHET (with the spirit of false prophecies) built the Image to the Beast, it just shows how the Apostate Churches of America have led the Protestant World into accepting the spiritual leadership of the Roman Church. They are just like their 'Harlot Mother' doing away with the Word of God and subscribing to a set of creeds or dogmas. They have taken her mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads that is, giving their right hand of fellowship in responding, and thinking, according to that prostituting spirit of the Roman Church. They are bowing to her dictates. (Read Deut.6:6-8.) One receives the Mark of the Beast when he accepts the false word just as one receives the Seal of the Holy Spirit when he accepts the Word of Truth.
[Note: When the Roman Catholic Church came into power at the beginning, she used governmental decree to force upon everyone to accept her invented faith in a trinity. Such a faith changed the Biblical Oneness of the Godhead into a Trinity of Persons (who were supposed to be equally eternal, equally omniscent and equally almighty). It was forced upon all men, women and children, and caused the death of many Jews, Muslims and Christians, who believed otherwise, during the more than 1000 years of Roman state-church rule. It was a mark that separated those who would bow to the power and the dogmas of the Papacy from those who would not. Today, the Catholics and the Protestants are strongly united upon the Holy Trinity dogma which are forced upon all Christians. Many churches profess that if one does not believe in the Holy Trinity, he or she is not a true Christian and is probably attached to a false church. Moreover, those who do not subscribe to the Holy Trinity dogma are opposed, victimized, ridiculed, intimidated and persecuted even at this very hour. But imagine what will really happen when the Beast (and its Image) comes into power?]
Mark of the Beast 666
Verse 18: Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.
Truly, wisdom is needed to decipher this mystery. Because of the prevailing spirit of ecumenism in many churches (regardless of their affiliation or otherwise with the W.C.C. or N.C.C.), many theologians and preachers are simply ignoring this particular verse and saying that Bible believers will never know who the Antichrist really is (as it is a mystery) until the Antichrist finally comes into power. But won't it be contrary to God's very words (in this verse) if He does not want his children to delve into this mystery? If we will only know at the very last moment who the Antichrist is, do we still need wisdom and understanding? Also, is not the Book of Revelation a record of the Revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ which God gave to Him for His saints? Oh, foolish Christians, who have bewitched you? The Book of Revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ is not a mysterious book! On the contrary, it is an open book FULL OF REVELATION for the True Worshippers of Christ at this very hour!
Six hundred threescore and six is 666. Strange as it may seem, this is the number that the European Common Market had picked as the first three security digit code for use in their trade. It was reported that they had a big computer which they called the beast, housed within three floors of the Administration Building of their Headquarters. Nevertheless "the beast" might be fictional but with the world today being hooked up on the World Wide Web (the Internet), we can see that it will not be difficult for the Devil to have the Antichrist control the financial world through the system that is already set up in the E.U..
Despite the unusual references to the computerized number in the E.U., the real significance of this number is the number of a man. That is what the mark truly holds. It is not a visible distinction. The number 6 in the Bible relates to man. For example, man was created on the 6th day (Gen.1). The children of Israel matched around the city wall of Jericho for 6 days before it fell on the seventh (Josh.6). The image of Nebuchadnezzar was 60 cubits high and 6 cubits wide (Dan.3). However, the number 666 signifies not just a man but a powerful man. 666 is 6 x 111. And 111 signifies might, authority and rule. The Name of our Lord Jesus Christ is signified by the number 888 which is 8 x 111; 8 being the number of resurrection or new beginning.
At different times, Bible scholars have offered the names of politicians such as Adolf Hitler, Henry Kissinger and Ronald Wilson Reagan as candidates for the Beast-Man. However, the man who bears the prophetic number of 666 is not just a politician; he is more than a politician. The Word is clear about this. He is a horn, who will rise up among the ten horns to seize power (Dan.7:7-8) and sit on the Beast in the Roman Church (Rev.17). We understand that he is a politico-religious man, the man of sin, the son of perdition, the Antichrist, the Pope. He was, is not and is yet to come. Since its beginning the Papacy has always been the office of the Antichrist. In the past, during the Dark Ages, he had manifested his ugliness, but today he is calm, gentle and peaceful. But he will not remain that way. THE ANTICHRIST, WHO WILL BE SATAN INCARNATE, IS YET TO COME. When he comes he will unleash his full wrath on God's people. That is Thus saith the Word of God.” Regarding this man, let's consider some writings:
The Pope is of so great dignity, and so exalted, that he is not a mere man, but as it were God, and the VICAR OF GOD. The Pope is, as it were, God on earth, chief king of kings, having plenitude of power.
The Pope is of such lofty and supreme dignity that, properly speaking, he has not been established in any rank of dignity, but rather has been placed upon the very summit of all ranks of dignities
He is likewise the divine monarch and supreme emperor and king of kings.
Hence the Pope is crowned with a Triple Crown, as King of Heaven and of Earth and of the Lower Regions.
Lucius Ferraris, Prompta Biblilotheca Canonica Juridica Moralis Theologica (Catholic Dictionary), Vol.VI, pages 25-29, 438, 422.
We hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty.
Pope Leo XIII, in an Encyclical Letter, June 20, 1894.
The Pope is not only the representative of Jesus Christ, but he is Jesus Christ Himself, hidden under the veil of flesh.
The Catholic National, July, 1895.
We define that the Holy Apostolic See (the Vatican) and the Roman Pontiff hold the primacy over the whole world.
A Decree of the Council of Trent, quoted in Philippe Labbe and Gabriel Cossart, The Most Holy Councils, Vol.13, col.1167.
What are the letters supposed to be in the Pope's crown, and what do they signify, if anything?
The letters inscribed in the Pope's miter are these: VICARIUS FILII DEI, which is the Latin for 'VICAR OF THE SON OF GOD.' CATHOLICS HOLD THAT THE CHURCH, WHICH IS A VISIBLE SOCIETY, MUST HAVE A VISIBLE HEAD. CHRIST, BEFORE HIS ASCENSION INTO HEAVEN, APPOINTED ST. PETER TO ACT AS HIS REPRESENTATIVE HENCE TO THE BISHOP OF ROME, AS HEAD OF THE CHURCH, WAS GIVEN THE TITLE, 'VICAR OF CHRIST'.
Our Sunday Visitor (Catholic Weekly), Bureau of Information, Huntington, Ind., U.S.A., April 18, 1915.
So, with wisdom, let us count the number of this man who would be one with the Beast in that hour.
Whenever a new Pope is crowned, he is conferred the title VICARIVS FILII DEI (meaning the Vicar of Christ) which when translated into the Roman numerals, their value adds up to 666.
V I C A R I V S F I L I I D E I
5 1 100 - - 1 5 - - 1 50 1 1 500 - 1 = 666
The Romans use only SIX letters of their alphabets for numbers: D, C, L, X, V, I. (All other numbers are made up of combinations of these.) It is interesting and significant to note that the value of the SIX letters that make up the Roman numeral system adds up to a total of exactly 666! [Note: Some Christians would defend the Pope and deny that he would be the Antichrist by saying that the letter U in VICARIUS is not equivalent to the letter V. They cite that though V was used for U in the 2nd Century, it was not so in the 6th Century. It is like certain Christians who fight against the issue of Ham's sin being an incestuous act with his mother by contending that the words uncovered and saw the nakedness of his father (in Gen.9:21-22) are not the same as those written later in the Book of Leviticus (18:6-8; 20:11,17). Foolishness! No matter how they dispute, they could not and will not be able to deny and refute the fact that VICARIUS FILII DEI is VICARIVS FILII DEI.]
This is an official Name-Title bestowed by the Catholic Church on the Head of the Roman Church. It appears that the Pope's miter does not contain the Latin title, but the words are used during the coronation ceremonies of each newly crowned Pope. This should be enough for us to know that he is the one that Bible prophecies point to as the Beast-Man who will control the last world empire, and that he will kill the two Jewish prophets and the tribulation saints. However, he is not only the Beast-Man, he is also the Latin Man, LATEINOS. Latin is the language of Rome in all its official business. In the Roman alphabets, the value of LATIN adds up to 666.
D V X C L E R I
500 5 10 100 50 - - 1 = 666
LATEINOS is but the GREEK form of the name ROMULUS, from which the present city of Rome is named. The value of all its letters also adds up to 666.
L A T E I N O S
30 1 300 5 10 50 70 200 = 666
And, as an added significance, this same name in HEBREW, ROMIITH, also has a total value of 666.
R O M I I TH
200 6 40 10 10 400 = 666
According to the Historian Alexander Hislop (in his book 'The Two Babylons', pages 239 and 270) the original name of Rome was Saturnia, meaning the city of Saturn (Shobab Anishah). And Saturn was but another name for Nimrod. It was the secret name revealed only to the initiates of the Chaldean Mysteries, which (in CHALDEE) was spelled with four letters STUR. In this language, STUR adds up to a total value of 666.
S T U R
60 400 6 200 = 666
There are two more interesting facts to note. In 1 Kings 10:14, we have the record that King Solomon received 666 talents of gold a year besides other things. This wealth of gold played an important part in leading him astray. The word wealth is translated from the Greek euporia with a total value of 666 (e 5, u 400, p 80, o 70, r 100, i 10, a 1). Out of all the 2000 Greek nouns of the New Testament, there is one other word that has this numerical value and that word is paradosis (p 80, a 1, r 100, a 1, d 4, o 70, s 200, i 10, s 200), translated tradition (cf. Matt.15:2; Acts 19:25). Wealth and tradition are the two great corruptions of the Roman Catholic Church. Wealth corrupts practice and honesty, and tradition corrupts doctrine.
Now all these facts should be enough proofs (though there are many more) pointing to the Pope as being the man with the number 666. Could anyone simply brush them aside and say that all these are just coincidences? Many Christians who once held the belief that the Pope would be the Antichrist have now rejected it. Could anyone be so blind that he cannot see what the Scriptures also reveal that he is from the Great Harlot church, Mystery, Babylon The Great, The Mother of Harlots And Abominations of The Earth, and that he was that powerful and blasphemous little horn that Daniel saw in his vision (Dan.7) and of whom Paul has warned as a coming one who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God (2 Thess.2:4)? Did he not substitute the Word of God for traditions, water baptism (immersion) for sprinkling, tithes for taxes and indulgences, death for purgatory, oneness of God for a triune God, and perpetrate innumerable other false teachings?
Seriously heed this warning: flee from the churches which are members of the W.C.C. To most of them, the Papacy has changed; it is no longer what it was in the Dark Ages and therefore Romanism should be regarded with greater favour now than before. But don't be fooled. It has not changed one bit. It is Protestantism that has changed. Rome has asserted that the church never erred, nor will it, according to the Scriptures, ever err (John L. von Mosheim, 'Institues of Ecclesiastical History', Book 3, Century II, Part 2, Chap.2, Sect.9, Note 17). The Papal Church will never relinquish her claim to infallibility. What she had done in the past in her persecution of all those who rejected her dogmas, she denies any wrong doing. As a Vatican saying goes: In the Vatican everything is forbidden, and everything is possible.” So, let Rome be restored to her former power and the world will see a speedy revival of tyranny and persecution.
It is the Protestant (the so-called Fundamental, the Bible-believing, the God-fearing, and etc.) Churches which have changed. They are heading back to Rome from where their forefathers had fled. Just listen to what Dr. Robert Schuller (a well known Protestant preacher) has said: It's time for Protestants to go to the shepherd (the pope) and say 'what do we have to do to come home?' (Los Angeles Herald Examiner, Sept. 19, 1987). He is just one of the many preachers who is being mesmerized by the charm of Rome. Even the world renowned evangelist Dr. Billy Graham has looked upon the Pope as the most holy man on earth, but who now believes and accepts the evolution theory. (That means the Pope believes that he evolved from the monkey.) Such Christian 'heathens' are now returning to their Mama in fulfillment of the very words of Pope Pius XII, in his encyclical letter, 'The Mystical Body of Christ', June 29, 1943: If a man refuse to hear the (Roman Catholic) Church, let him be considered so the Lord commands as a heathen and a publican.
So, lest you become a heathen and a publican, return to Rome. Would you? May God have mercy.
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Revelation Chapter 14
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