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Rev 13:1  And he stood upon the sand of the sea. 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.

In Rev 12:7-9 we see this: Rev 12:7  And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels going forth to war with the dragon; and the dragon warred and his angels;

Rev 12:8  And they prevailed not, neither was their place found any more in heaven.

Rev 12:9  And the great dragon was cast down, the old serpent, he that is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world; he was cast down to the earth, and his angels were cast down with him.

We have heard the declaration about salvation. There might also be a declaration of how he is overcome but listen to this last: Rev 12:12  Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe for the earth and for the sea: because the devil is gone down unto you, having great wrath, knowing that he hath but a short time.

Woe for or to the Earth and Sea…  this is a very ticked off Dragon/Devil/Serpent of Old/antichrist. This is not a benevolent dictator although he/she/it will most certainly play the part with consummate perfection.  For it is true that if you want votes you not only have to make promises you fulfill but you also have to win the hearts of the masses over.  As to the head wound, looks like some lucky angel maybe even Michael himself got in a good punch. This is a switchout of sorts.  This is the Dragon fallen and the Beast rising. This is the connection. Rev 13:4  and they worshipped the dragon, because he gave his authority unto the beast; and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? And who is able to war with him?  In this translation of the ASV the right word is used: authority.  The Greek word is exousia which means delegated power or authority.  Delegated….  The Dragon is spiritual but the Beast is physical.  Now watch this.  Just as the Holy Spirit indwelt Jesus so does the Dragon indwell the Beast.  This authority is the power and permission to use the power as delegated and commissioned by the indwelling one, and that’s all there is to it.

Rev 13:2  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 throne, and great authority.

Now we have seen these animals before in Daniel.  In fact Daniel has seen this beast … sort of.  In the order they appear in this beast let’s look at Daniel’s understanding of these animals. The Leopard.   7:6  After this I beheld, and, lo, another, like a leopard which had upon its back four wings of a bird; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it. This is the four headed leopard of the division of Alexander the Great’s land holdings or conquered nations as he died without declaring his successor. The body of our beast is that of the leopard representing the Grecian influence colored by possibly the Persian empire.  Wikipedia tells us that: “The species’ success in the wild is in part due to its opportunistic hunting behavior, its adaptability to habitats, its ability to run at speeds approaching 58 kilometres per hour (36 mph), its unequaled ability to climb trees even when carrying a heavy carcass, and its notorious ability for stealth. The leopard consumes virtually any animal that it can hunt down and catch… Leopards are agile and stealthy predators”  It’s a fast opportunistic hunter that isn’t picky about its diet.  It is a carnivore a predator a hunter and agile or cunning and stealthy or secretive.  Do you get the picture here?  This is how it looks, it blends, it consumes, it is a hunter,  it’s like a roaring lion seeking something to devour.  The Bear.   Dan 7:5  And, behold, another beast, a second, like to a bear; and it was raised up on one side, and three ribs were in its mouth between its teeth: and they said thus unto it, Arise, devour much flesh.

This is Persia.  The Persian law was unrelenting and its princes could be quite cruel.  Persian Kings could “do as they pleased” and the Princes were quite possibly elected for life.  There was also a lot of political maneuvering in these courts.  The father of Xerxes, Cambyses was quite the despot. So we see the despotic rule of the bear; in its goings about and, because we are talking animals with paws, then also in its doings.  This is how the government was, Despotic, harsh, absolute and possibly capricious in nature. The bear is known for force and strength and some agility.  Bears are said to have tremendous physical presence and charisma which would be important as the beast goes about setting up government.

The Lion.  Perhaps the most important feature of the Beast is the mouth of the Lion.  In Scripture almost always the Lion is the symbol of Messianic Rule. But in Daniel we find the lion as well. 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 to stand upon two feet as a man; and a man’s heart was given to it. This would be the ensign of Babylon, but the plucking of the wings means conquering. The lifting up and giving of the heart of a man and being made to stand like a man, actually, reduces the Lion.  But in a rather twisted manner it could be construed almost as Messianic in its own right.  Too bad this was representative of Nebuchadnezzar. He lost his kingdom to God for a period of time and gained the perspective of the fear of the LORD and thus do we see the change from mere animal to thinking man, God fearing and thinking man.

However as I have previously said the Lion figures in Messianic understanding almost exclusively. It is said of the One who opens the seals on the scroll… Rev 5:5  and one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not; behold, the Lion that is of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, hath overcome to open the book and the seven seals thereof.  The reference to the Root of David would be also of Jesse his father for a “Root” can be a son or descendant. Isa 11:10  And it shall come to pass in that day, that the root of Jesse, that standeth for an ensign of the peoples, unto him shall the nations seek; and his resting-place shall be glorious.

The “Root” here is Jesus.  David never stood as an ensign for the peoples.  However Solomon was one whom  the nations sought but it is Jesus whom the Nations seek whose resting place is all glorious.  Both the terms Lion and LAMB are used in Revelation. Rev 5:6  And I saw in the midst of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the midst of the elders, a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, having seven horns, and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God, sent forth into all the earth.  In the previous verse He had been described as the Lion of Judah.  Hence the speech or the rhetoric will sound Messianic. In fact He will pass Himself off as Messiah, in so far as it concerns the believers. This is what the mouth is saying, this is the message of the Beast.  “I am come to set up my Kingdom, come join me.” In fact this BEAST will pass himself as the “salvation and way to heaven” for all the religions of man. However our concern is that amongst these he will be passing himself off as Our Christ.  Here is that statement of “if it is possible he would deceive the Very Elect”(Matt 24:24, Mk13:22) But for all this there is a wound.

Rev 13:3  And I saw one of his heads as though it had been smitten unto death; and his death-stroke was healed: and the whole earth wondered after the beast;

Could this be the work of the atonement? (“and I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed: he shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.” Gen 3:15) Could this the felling stroke of Michael the Archangel?  In the Hebrew we come up with an interesting tie into the Genesis verse.  It comes in the form of the word for bruise. Strongs Hebrew # 7779  shûph  A primitive root; properly to gape, that is, snap at; figuratively to overwhelm: – break, bruise, cover. Now this could be an appearance of a death stroke healed.  And the WHOLE EARTH… wonders or is in admiration of the fact that the “wound” healed.

Rev 13:4  and they worshipped the dragon, because he gave his authority unto the beast; and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? And who is able to war with him?

Herein is a blasphemy.  For it is supposed to be said of the LAMB…  Mal_3:2  But who can abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fuller’s soap:

Rev 6:16  and they say to the mountains and to the rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:

Rev 6:17  for the great day of their wrath is come; and who is able to stand?

There is One who is able to stand and to war with the Beast.  That One is the LAMB.

Rev 13:5  and there was given to him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and there was given to him authority to continue forty and two months.

42 months or 1260 days… If you divide 1260 by 30 you get 42.  Please understand though that this is a 30/31 day scenario so it’s roughly 42 months. If you divide 42 by 12 you get 3.5 hence the concept is proven by math to be roughly three and one half years.  So then it is quite possible that the witnesses are there the leader of the “bugs” is the one who kills them meanwhile the Beast is hunting down the remnant of “her seed” the saints. Meanwhile “she” is in the “place prepared” being “nourished”.  Because we see these images in this grouping we understand that all this is happening during this portion of time.  All during this time our beast is speaking great blasphemies.  Now at some point a great bible search would be to find bible wide all the scriptures that have “time, times and half a time” in them and see what they say.  In the Diasporas it was not three and half years it was seventy, for the land to rest fallow for the Shabbats it lost. Then there is the   Seventy  years of prophecy.  Sixty two are accomplished which includes the time of Jesus Christ. There is one last seven weeks or years, for in the numbers God uses seven is the number, supposedly, of perfection.  Most all this you will find in Daniel.  You will also find a seven year treaty of peace with Israel and all the surrounding land… a treaty that is broken in middle of the years.  Now the exact ramification may be spelled out or they may be implied and this may be where eschatologists begin to fancy themselves as knowledgeable.  For the purposes of this however, if it not spelled out then we don’t want to make unsound predictions. (Dan 9:24-27 see Timing link)

Rev 13:6  And he opened his mouth for blasphemies against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, even them that dwell in the heaven.

Now this is the way the blasphemy is being done.  The Name, The Tabernacle, and the “Citizens” One has to realize what is meant by Blaspheme.  To blaspheme in the Greek is to defame or to slander the character or person or name of someone or rather to also take the fame and denigrate the Name of God and His Tabernacle and His “people” by making himself out to be the “real deal”.

Rev 13:7  And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and there was given to him authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation.

In fact this is purportedly the proof that the “evil righteous” are not supported by God.  But remember they actually OVERCOME him.  “Rev 12:11  And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb, and because of the word of their testimony; and they loved not their life even unto death.”  So his overcoming is to eliminate them but their overcoming is to be forever out of his reach. After all are we to fear him who can end our physical life or Him who do that and consign us to hell?(Matt 10:28) You see the flesh has this notion of physical prosperity and or being physically in a place of peace and safety.  This type of life has been proven to make one become cold and aloof and distant from God and thus it is in the fire of persecution with an understanding that it is not our physical lives that matter but the estate of the spirit and the Holy Spirit’s freedom within us to live act and be, that matters to God the most.  That is “setting the eye on things spiritual”.

Rev 13:8  And all that dwell on the earth shall worship him, every one whose name hath not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb that hath been slain.

Everyone whose name is NOT WRITTEN in the book of life of the LAMB, meaning those who are not born again, those who are not filled with the Holy Spirit, to whom the Blood of the LAMB has not been applied and of whom it is safe to say, they are NOT ELECT. Seeing as they serve Satan in serving only themselves no matter how philanthropic or noble or heroic, at the end of the day they are self serving or self deceived.  Either way they are serving the Adversary and will fall in line with the Beast because their flesh calls them to it.  You see either we serve the Holy Spirit by the crucifixion of the flesh with its passions and lusts(Gal 5:24) or we are slaves to it. We are remanded not to live according to the flesh but by the Holy Spirit. So then is it any wonder that those not in the Lamb’s book are worshipping the Beast?

The next verse is an alert to these two.  This Beast is given permission to make war with the saints in an attempt to deceive and overcome them. If you are destined to be caught or killed you will be caught or killed.

Rev 13:9  If any man hath an ear, let him hear.

Rev 13:10  If any man is for captivity, into captivity he goeth: if any man shall kill with the sword, with the sword must he be killed. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.

The patience of the saints is in that they are purified through the tribulations of these trying times. You see patience has a perfect work of maturation so that the saint is perfect, complete, entire and lacking nothing.(Jas 1:4) However as if this first beast rising as the Dragon falls is not bad enough there is a second and this one is much scarier.  You be the judge, is this the apostate church?

Rev 13:11  And I saw another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like unto a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.

Two horns like a Lamb or a RAM.  The Ram was the dedicatory function of the lamb.  Whereas a young LAMB would be offered for sacrifices like Passover, the Ram was used as a dedicatory for the priesthood.  Moses’ brother Aaron and his sons used the blood of the ram as the dedicatory animal (dedication to service) on the day when the Tabernacle first opened.  Horn denote power might ability militarily or magically or spiritually.  This is spiritual. So the appearance mimics the LAMB but the mouth doesn’t match the WORD.  No indeed its “dragon speak”, and what does the Dragon speak? “Rev 13:5  and there was given to him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies;…” , blasphemies.  But while the Beast from the sea gets his power from the Dragon, and everyone knows it; this Beast from the Earth exercises all kinds of authority in the sight of the Beast from the sea.  What is going on here?!

Rev 13:12  And he exerciseth all the authority of the first beast in his sight. And he maketh the earth and them dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose death-stroke was healed.

Rev 13:13  And he doeth great signs, that he should even make fire to come down out of heaven upon the earth in the sight of men.

Rev 13:14  And he deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by reason of the signs which it was given him 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 who hath the stroke of the sword and lived.

To exercise all the authority of the first beast in the sight of the beast, smacks of the works of the Believers in the “sight or presence” of the Lord. One gets this authority or empowerment from the “presence” of the Lord and miracles happen but it is the LORD not the Dragon.  Unfortunately mankind is going more and more to the wrong source to be empowered to go beyond themselves so when this day comes it will be no surprise. The calling down of fire from heaven may be like the days of Elijah of old who called down fire from heaven or it may be manmade “fire” from the “heavens” it is debatable which the writer is intending here but there is a point; “as in the days of Elijah” will take on a whole new meaning.  These action and the certain subsequent “teaching and or preaching” of the Second Beast causes all those who are susceptible to the effects of these miracles and wonders to perceive the first Beast as GOD, so they worship.  Then the second beast tells the humanity to make an image of the first beast.  Is it a statue or a computer generated thing? How it’s done is unclear but that it’s done harkens back to Nebuchadnezzar and his great statue.  Will they be animating something here?  Somehow it appears to be animated. it is the people that he gets to build the “image”.  He does this by deception.  Deception, we are warned that if we get involved in this “beast” we could be “deceived” (if it is possible… where is discernment?)  But how is this beast so successful. The first beast is given permission to persecute the Saints (Christians) and the second gets permission from the first and yet is able to deceive?

2Th 2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, touching the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and our gathering together unto him;
2Th 2:2 to the end that ye be not quickly shaken from your mind, nor yet be troubled, either by spirit, or by word, or by epistle as from us, as that the day of the Lord is just at hand;
2Th 2:3 let no man beguile you in any wise: for it will not be, except the falling away come first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition,
2Th 2:4 he that opposeth and exalteth himself against all that is called God or that is worshipped; so that he sitteth in the temple of God, setting himself forth as God.
2Th 2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
2Th 2:6 And now ye know that which restraineth, to the end that he may be revealed in his own season.
2Th 2:7 For the mystery of lawlessness doth already work: only there is one that restraineth now, until he be taken out of the way.
2Th 2:8 And then shall be revealed the lawless one, whom the Lord Jesus shall slay with the breath of his mouth, and bring to nought by the manifestation of his coming;
2Th 2:9 even he, whose coming is according to the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
2Th 2:10 and with all deceit of unrighteousness for them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
2Th 2:11 And for this cause God sendeth them a working of error, that they should believe a lie:
2Th 2:12 that they all might be judged who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

What you need to understand is the Personage that is sending this delusion…  that is not restraining the error.  That Personage is God Himself.  This is how the second Beast manages to be so successful.  The mind of the masses is receptive and willing to believe, because God has made it so.

Rev 13:15  And it was given unto him to give breath to it, even to the image to the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as should not worship the image of the beast should be killed.

Here’s the thing EVERYONE KNOWS it’s an image … right?  Is breathing into it some form of enchantment or technology?  I have no answer as of yet myself. In that everyone is worshiping the Beast himself why wouldn’t they also worship an image of him?

Rev 13:16  And he causeth all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free and the bond, that there be given them a mark on their right hand, or upon their forehead;

Rev 13:17  and that no man should be able to buy or to sell, save he that hath the mark, even the name of the beast or the number of his name.

Rev 13:18  Here is wisdom. He that hath understanding, let him count the number of the beast; for it is the number of a man: and his number is Six hundred and sixty and six.

For the longest time I have supposed that the beast who rises from the sea was the one behind the economy of the mark.  Turns out I was wrong.  Everything above me is about the beast who rises from the earth.  The one with horns or power or is of two halves, but looks like the LAMB and speaks like the DRAGON.  Horns of a ram, we find them in Daniel and ram that is raging to the right and the left with none to withstand it until the goat enters.  The ram in that image is the medo-persian empire.  So then horns, denotes split power or governing.  If indeed this horned Lamb represents a fallen apostate church then it represents a fallen apostate Jew and Gentile union.  You see, the Jew and Gentile in Christendom are united in Christ, but here they are united under the beast from the sea.

In all this display what we need to realize is that the issue here is SOURCE. What is the SOURCE of the power?  TO who are the masses going for power? Certainly not the LAMB.  Also you see a lot of chicanery and trickery but perhaps nothing truly genuine. So then the Dragon or Satan who is more powerful than a mere human is has begun to the stand out and make his stance against Jesus Christ by slowly displaying himself AS CHRIST.  Is there any reason why the LAMB should not be truly furious and His wrath not be massive?