Helllo everyone! Here in Minnesota, it looks like winter is upon us. Hopefully, many of you still have fall like weather and you are enjoying it. Winters are cold here but we still have mostly sunny days. So on this sunny day I would like to cover what scripture has to say about the first and second beasts of Daniel and Revelation. What part do they play in last day events? What impact will they have on Christianity and in our lives? Is it important to know the answers to these questions?
Let’s pray! 🙏 Heavenly Father, God of mercy and love, we come to you in humble adoration, asking forgiveness for our sins and the power to forgive our neighbors. We thank You for the bountiful gifts You give us daily, that we still have freedom to worship You. Father, be with each of us, pour out Your Holy Spirit on us so that we can understand what Your Word tells us concerning the first and second beasts. Open our eyes that we may see, hearts and minds that we may understand and embrace Your Word. In Jesus name, Amen!
“The dragon (Satan) stood on the shore of the sea. And I (John the Beloved) saw a beast coming out of the sea. It had ten horns and seven heads with ten crowns on its horns and on each head a blasphemous name…. The dragon gave the beast his power and his throne and great authority.” (Revelation 13:1-2)
This beast seems to be a conglomeration of the four beast in Daniel 7 – lion, bear, leopard, and a beast with ten horns. (Revelation 13:1a-2a) The prophetic symbolism of these four beast correlate with the dream of the great statue that King Nebuchadnezzar had and Daniel interpreted. (Daniel 2) The four beasts represent world powers from Babylon to Rome – the Biblical interpretation of the king’s statue is: Babylon the head of gold, Medo-Persia the chest of silver, Greece the hips of bronze, Rome the legs of iron, all world powers. Since Rome, the legs of iron, we have not had another world power – this is representative of the statue’s feet made of a mixture of iron and clay. (Daniel 7:17) Historically, we know that the Roman Empire was divided into 10 kingdoms – representing the 10 horns of the first beast. This took place in 476 AD – which is the beginning of the first beasts power.
At this time I think it would be helpful if I clarified some of the Biblical interpretation of some key words in the prophecies.
- Prophetically, a horn represents a king or kingdom. “The four horns that replaced the one that was broken off represent four kingdoms that will emerge from his nation but will not have the same power.” (Daniel 8:22) NOTE: This is not referring to the second beast – it is for the purpose of telling what the horns represent.
- A sea or waters represents people or multitudes. “Then the angel said to me, ‘The waters you saw, where the prostitute sits, are people, multitudes, nations, and languages.” (Revelation 17:15)
- Earth represents the opposite of the sea – meaning it comes up on a sparsely populated area or wilderness. http://www.end-times-prophecy.org/america-bible-prophecy.html
- The “little horn” power represents a small kingdom that uprooted 3 horns or 3 kingdoms out of the 10 horns.
- Eyes like a man on the little horn power represents the prominent leader of the end time antichrist system. https://www.endtimes-bibleprophecy.com/page6.htm
- Mouth on little horn represents blasphemy. “Daniel 7 – that he ‘speaks great things’ and ‘speaks great words against the Most High.” https://www.endtimes-bibleprophecy.com/page6.htm
This is not a comprehensive list, but it gives you a better understanding of the prophecies we are discussing. In another blog, I plan to go into greater detail concerning the little horn.
Now we know that Satan gave the first beast all of his power to deceive and destroyed the children of God. He came up out of the populated area of Rome (the sea) after the Roman Empire was divided into 10 kingdoms (10 horns) in 476 AD. Shortly after this beast come on the scene a “little horn” pops up dislodging 3 of the 10 original horns (3 kingdoms). This little power had eyes and a blasphemous mouth. (Daniel 7) When we take a look at historical documents of that time period we discover events that parallel Bible prophecy to the letter. In 538 AD, Papal Rome, (the Vatican) the smallest country, came into power. “The (Roman Church-State) power became supreme in Christendom in 538AD, due to a letter of the Roman Emperor Justinian, known as Justinian’s decree, which setup and acknowledged the bishop of Rome as the head of all churches. It gave the (Roman Church-State) political power, civil power, as well as ecclesiastical power. This letter became part of Justinians code, the fundamental law of the empire, and that year, pope Vigilius ascended the throne under the military protection of Belasarius (one of Justinians Generals).” (The History of the Christian Church, Vol.3)
The Bible tells us this “little horn” power uprooted 3 of the 10 horns on the first beast. We learn from historical documentation that the Roman Military under the power of the Papal bishop marched on and destroyed 3 of the 10 kingdoms (horns) because they would not follow the decrees of the church state – the papacy. These kingdoms were the Heruli, Vandals, and Ostrogoths. Thus, we can conclude that Satan gave his power to the first beast who’s power comes from the Vatican or Papacy. These historical events fit in perfectly with Bible prophesy.
NOTE – Please let me take a moment to clarify that this is not a disparagement against all Catholic believers. We know that God’s children are in all Christian denominations. There are many Godly people in the Catholic Church and they do not consider their church to be a church state power. Prophecy is speaking of the Vatican – the Papacy specifically.
Knowing that the little horn is a religious state power, let’s take a look at the Biblical description of the little horn as it compares to historical documentation. “To summarize, let’s look at all the identifying marks that the Roman Catholic Church is the little horn power of Daniel 7: (https://www.end-times-prophecy.org/)
- A Little horn – The Vatican is a little country
- It comes up among the other horns – The Catholic Church came to power among the ten split kingdoms of Europe
- It plucks up 3 of the other horns – The Catholic Church destroyed 3 kingdoms
- It is diverse from the other horns – The Papacy (Catholic Church) is a religio-political power
- It speaks great things against God – The Catholic Church speaks blasphemies against God
- It wears out the saints – The Catholic Church persecuted and killed millions of Christians (down through the dark ages)
- It thinks to change times and law – The Catholic church thinks it can change the laws of God. The authority of the church could therefore not be bound to the authority of the scriptures, because the church had changed the Sabbath into Sunday, not by command of Christ, but by its own authority.” Canon and Tradition, page.263
- It ruled for 1260 years – The Catholic Church reigned between 538AD – 1798AD
From this list, we see that the Papacy held power until 1798 AD. We are told in Scripture, that the first beast received what seemed to be a deadly wound. “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.” (Revelation 13:3) What happened, historically, that would indicate this prophecy was fulfilled. “Papal supremacy of the Middle Ages ended in the year 1798, exactly 1260 years after Justinian’s decree established the Papacy as the supreme Christian power in 538 AD. In 1798, Napoleon’s army took the Pope captive and put him into exile.” (https://amazingdiscoveries.org)
So, what about the second beast and when did the first beast’s wound get healed? In order to get our answers, let’s see what the Bible has to say about the second beast. “Then I saw a second beast, coming out of the earth (unpopulated land). It had two horns like a lamb, but it spoke like a dragon. It exercised all the authority of the first beast on its behalf, and made the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose fatal wound had been healed.” (Revelation 13:11-12) This beast was given power to show great signs and wonders – fire from heaven. Because of its great signs, the second beast was given power from the first beast and ordered the inhabitants of the world to set up an image to the first beast. The second beast gave breath to the first beast and the first beast commanded all the inhabitants of the world to worship the image or be killed. It also command everyone to receive a mark of the number of the beast in order to buy or sell. (Revelation 13:13-15) Basically, the first and second beast join together to make the world follow Satan or be killed.
Satan gives power to the second beast to heal the first beast, but what is different about the second beast? We know, from Scripture, that the second beast power will come out of the earth or a sparsely populated area of land. Let’s look at historical records to see if we can find a power that comes into existence about the same time the first beast receives his wound. “American colonies, also called thirteen colonies or colonial America, the 13 British colonies that were established during the 17th and early 18th centuries in what is now a part of the eastern United States. The colonies grew both geographically along the Atlantic coast and westward and numerically to 13 from the time of their founding to the American Revolution (1775–81). (https://www.britannica.com/topic/American-colonies) The United States of America perfectly fits into the Bible’s prophetic timeframe as it came into existence on the North American continent which was basically wilderness and at the approximate time of the end of the 1260 years of Papal rule.
The Colonies of America were started due to religious persecution in Europe. Many free and imprisoned people made up the early inhabitants of the “new world.” They were seeking religious freedom and separation of church and state. Thus, America, the second beast is portrayed as a lamb with 2 horns. We know Jesus as the Lamb of God, but the second beast speaks as a dragon – therefore scripture isn’t talking about Jesus. This leads us to conclude that this lamb like nation with horns will appear to be a Godly nation of freedom, separation of church and government – our history tells us this is how America started. In the minds of the people, Christianity was at the root of the nation. However, we seem to be losing the premise upon which our nation was based. The second beast is now speaking in very deceitful ways – leading many souls astray.
We need to take a deeper look at why the prophecies would depict this second beast as lamb like. Jesus is the lamb, so when Revelation 13:14 speak about the second beast showing signs and wonders it is referring to Satan impersonating Jesus. He is acting like a lamb but his mouth is speaking blasphemous lies. He will walk upon this earth, deceiving, if possible, even the elect with his deceitful half truths – his lies mixed with a little bit of Biblical truth. (Matthew 24:23-27) By many, he will be perceived as the Lamb of God come to earth. We must know Scripture so that we are not deceived. Jesus will come in the clouds, His feet will not touch the earth, He will not walk upon the earth – we, His people, will be caught up into the clouds to meet Him. (1 Thessalonians 4:17) This blasphemous lamb like creature will be charismatic, loving, and benevolent and many will wonder after this beast. We cannot let ourselves be deceived. Amen!
Scripture (Revelation 13:13-15) tells us that the second beast will cause people great and small, all over the world to bow down to the image of the first beast. But, that would mean that America needs to have worldwide influence. “America is not only the first, as well as the only, truly global superpower, but it is also likely to be the very last.” (‘The Grand Chessboard’ by Zbigniew Brzezinski, (Former United States National Security Advisor) The history of the United States of America parallels the prophetic Scripture perfectly and clearly represents the second beast.
We are told that the very end of time will be the worst most destructive time in history. This is why I believe it is vitally important that we understand and embrace the prophetic warnings in the Bible. Knowing the prophecies and understanding them will give us some foresight into what to expect, what to be looking for in these last days. However, our only assurance of overcoming evil and having salvation is to remain in Christ Jesus, to keep our focus and center on Him, to surrender to His will and promises, and lean not on our own understanding. (Proverbs 3:5-6) When we are grounded in Jesus, He will work through our surrendered vessels (us) to stand strong against the last day fiery darts the devil throws at us. (Ephesians 6:10-18)
I ask you to prayerfully check out what I blog. If your research brings you to the same conclusion as me, then share it with others. If you are led by the Holy Spirit into deeper insight or further information then share it with the rest of us in a comment. I pray that we will all diligently search the Scriptures and pray without ceasing – Jesus is coming soon. Amen!
As you grow in Christ Jesus, may God’s Word be ever on your mind and heart. Proverbs 3:1