Revelation 13:1-18 (KJV) And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. 2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. 3 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. 4 And they 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? 5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. 7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. 8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. 9 If any man have an ear, let him hear. 10 He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints. 11 And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. 12 And he 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. 13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, 14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by 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. 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. 16 And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: 17 And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. 18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.
image courtesy of publicdomainpictures.net
For everything God has, the devil has an imitation. We studied last Wednesday the Trinity of God. We talked about how the God we love and Who saves us is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We saw the Trinity revealed in Jesus’ Baptism, and discussed how:
The Father Planned
The Son Performed
The Spirit Powered
in salvation. I’d love to ignore this chapter and just preach the Trinity and the Christ all over again. Those are glorious truths. But there are dark truths we also need to understand. God is Triune, the Three Persons working in one accord and in one love. But during the Great Tribulation there will be another trinity revealed. A dark trinity. A trinity not of love and light, but a trinity of evil. This trinity mimics in an evil way the good that is God.
The Dragon (That Old Devil) Plans
The Anti-Christ Performs
The False Prophet Powers
This evil trinity (and I refuse to capitalize this false godhead, or to give it any respect whatsoever) rises up not to benefit humanity but to enslave it.
The First “Beast” Is The Anti-Christ
The Scripture declares:
1 Timothy 4:1 (KJV)1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
That is where we are today. The world has become darker and darker as it has turned farther and farther from God.
As John stood on the sand of the sea – exiled for his faith in Christ, left to die – he saw the first beast rise up.
Revelation 13:1 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.
Word Study John saw a “Beast” rise up “out of the sea”. The word translated “Beast” is the Greek word THERION, which means “A VENOMOUS or WILDLY DANGEROUS Creature”.
This Creature is the anti-Christ.
– This Wild Beast Rising Is The Anti-Christ. He Rises Up Out Of The SEA. What does the “Sea” represent? In the ancient world the sea was the source of food as well as the source of commerce. The Beast could then be someone of great financial power, a financier, having much power in business.
Further, the sea or waters are used in Revelation to represent a multitude of people. For instance, the angel tells John in …
Revelation 17:15 And he saith unto me, The WATERS which thou sawest …. are PEOPLES, and MULTITUDES, and NATIONS, and TONGUES.
The “Sea” could represent the people of the world, a people who will not worship God. In the midst of the violence and conflicts along with natural catastrophes, these God rejecting people do not look UPWARD to God but look AROUND. The anti-Christ shows up!
The Anti-Christ is described as ..
Revelation 13:1 … having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
Now this is very symbolic, but not literal. The Anti-Christ when he comes will not have seven heads and ten horns with ten crowns. He will be a man who looks like any man. But this text describes his power.
The anti-Christ has SEVEN heads. Seven is the number of God. The anti-Christ will be tied into false religious worship. In Revelation 17 we are given the description of the false religion of the Tribulation called
Revelation 17:5-9 (KJV) And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.  And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.  And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns. …  And here is the mind which hath wisdom. THE SEVEN HEADS ARE SEVEN MOUNTAINS, ON WHICH THE WOMAN SITTETH.
The Anti-Christ will be worshiped, and the world religion of that day will promote him.
The anti-Christ has TEN horns. These are not musical horns but horns like animals have. He will be backed by ten powerful nations.
On his heads the name of BLASPHEMY. He will be in direct opposition to God, unholy, unjust.
The anti-Christ will be backed by SATAN. We read last week in the previous chapter (Revelation 12:3) that the DEVIL has SEVEN heads and TEN horns. The anti-Christ will mimic his god and get his power from Satan.
Revelation 13:2 … the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
The anti-Christ will mimic Christ. We read:
Revelation 13:3 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.
The people of the world who would NOT receive Christ embrace the anti-Christ. He is the savior who saves man IN his sins, not FROM his sins …. and the world WORSHIPS this perversion of Christ! We read:
Revelation 13:4 And they WORSHIPED the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they WORSHIPED the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?
the lost world is astounded, and worships the Dragon that old Devil and worships the anti-Christ.
Revelation 13:5 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.
This pretender to Christ’s Throne will rule for 42 months – 3 ½ years. His time will be limited to that period of time, but during that period he shall stand against everything that is God. We are told that:
Revelation 13:6-8 And he opened his mouth in BLASPHEMY AGAINST GOD, TO BLASPHEME HIS NAME, AND HIS TABERNACLE, AND THEM THAT DWELL IN HEAVEN. 7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. 8 And ALL THAT DWELL UPON THE EARTH SHALL WORSHIP HIM, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
During that 3 ½ years the anti-Christ will mock everything holy, whether it be God, His people, or His Heaven. He will kill the saints on the earth, martyring them so that the world can see. As the righteous are killed what will be the reaction of the world? They shall worship Him. Those whose names are written in the Book of Life of the Lamb will not worship the anti-Christ not Satan, but all others shall. This will be a tremendously hard time for believing Israel. Christians are often persecuted. Jesus told us in …
Matthew 10:22-23 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved. 23 But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come.
Persecutions for our faith will come. The Great Tribulation will be the greatest time of persecution for God’s People. Yet in the end the Lord will overcome. The innocent will suffer because of the Anti-Christ, but his days are numbered.
The Second Beast Is The False Prophet
Revelation 13:11 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.
The anti-Christ rises up out of the SEA, and the False Prophet comes up out of the earth. The False Prophet is less charismatic than the Anti-Christ, but he is part of the same system.
The False Prophet has two horns like a lamb. No one fears a little Lamb. He’ll look innocent, harmless, attractive, sweet – a cuddly little lamb. He will be the wolf in sheep’s clothing that Jesus warned us of:
Matthew 7:15 (KJV) Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
He speaks as a DRAGON. His word is the devil’s word. The Holy Spirit of God lifts up Christ and His Word. The False Prophet is like an unholy spirit. He lifts up the Anti-Christ and the Devil, promoting his agenda. He demands that the world worship the Anti-Christ.
Revelation 13:12-16 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. 13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, 14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by 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 (AN IDOL) to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. 15 And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as MANY AS WOULD NOT WORSHIP THE IMAGE OF THE BEAST SHOULD BE KILLED. 16 And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:
The False Prophet will be able to do miracles of sorts, to draw fire down from the sky, and will look like an emissary of God. His intent is to have the world worship the Anti-Christ. John wrote of the Anti-Christ and the many anti-christs in …
1 John 2:18-23 (KJV) Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.  They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.  But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.  I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth.  Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.  Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.
The False Prophet will promote the Anti-Christ as if he were the Christ. His purpose is to deceive the whole world, and to enslave the world in the false religion he promotes.
Religion Is Tied To Survival
The False Prophet requires all of mankind receive the IMAGE OF THE BEAST as proof that they love his master. We read:
Revelation 13:17-18 And that NO MAN MIGHT BUY OR SELL, save he that had the MARK, or the NAME OF THE BEAST, or the NUMBER OF HIS NAME. 18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.
What is the purpose of this “mark”? That “no man might buy or sell”. Worship the anti-Christ or starve! Here is the mark of false worship:
False Worship Always Removes Free Will.
The Bible Shouts “Whosoever Will”.
John 3:14-17 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: 15 That WHOSOEVER believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that WHOSOEVER believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
During the latter half of the Great Tribulation the saints on the earth will be martyred, but the unbeliever shall be fed. As Pastor Greg Laurie describes it:
“Take my mark and worship me, or starve to death. No mark, no merchandise. No seal, no sale”.
There are three different markings offered by the False Prophet to the lost world, described as:
The Mark, OR
The Name of the Beast, OR
The Number Of His Name
People have been debating over this section of scripture since John first released it to the Church. What is this mark? Years ago, people thought that the mark was a bar code, and there were numerous Bible Prophecy teachers that spoke of how bar codes were the sign of the end of times. On June 1, 2012 the New York Daily News headline stated “Human Barcode Could Make Society More Organized”. The article went on to say “Microchip implants have become standard practice for our pets, but have become a tougher sell when it comes to the idea of putting them in people”. The Food and Drug Administration in the United States has approved the use of RFID chips in humans. The technology is there for the marking of humans and the coming cashless society.
People have wondered about the “number of his name” aspect of this text, and that the “number of his name is 666”. If you look up “666” on the Internet you will get 465 MILLION returns. For years people have been trying to put together the name of the anti-Christ from the number “666”. In ancient Greece and Rome letters of the alphabet were often used as numbers, so some believe that they can figure out who the anti-Christ will be based “on the number of his name”. Good luck with that!
People have tried to make popes, presidents, and politicians into the anti-Christ. No one will know the anti-Christ before the time by his name …. the anti-Christ will be known by his actions. HE WILL DEMAND WORSHIP THAT BELONGS ONLY TO GOD!
Matthew 24:15-16 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) 16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 4 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, showing himself that he is God.
How will the anti-Christ be known? He demands worship. He will go into the Temple of God in Jerusalem and exalt himself above all that is called God, or that is worshiped … showing himself that he is God”. No one will figure out the anti-Christ before he is revealed by his actions and his False Prophet. When he is revealed he will demand that all receive his mark in their forehead or right hand.
Why in the forehead or right hand? Because what starts in the HEAD comes out in the HAND. Worship in the HEAD comes out to work in the HAND. It is the RIGHT hand because – in the Far East – the RIGHT hand is used for interaction with others. The LEFT hand is the TOILET or PERSONAL hand, whereas the RIGHT hand is the hand that others shake or do business with you.
What you worship matters. We will read next week:
Revelation 14:9-12 …. If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, 10 The SAME SHALL DRINK OF THE WINE OF THE WRATH OF GOD, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: 11 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. 12 Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.
God designed you to worship Him. We were made to walk in peace with God. We were made to live in Paradise, the Garden of God. God wants to bless each and every one of us …. but we must not worship the wrong thing. Those who belong to Jesus worship Jesus.
Revelation 13:8-9 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. 9 If any man have an ear, let him hear.
I thank my God that – though life here is often brutal – there is coming a day when I will be with Him forever. Before the anti-Christ rises my God shall take me, and all those who are His, into glory. While hell is on earth we shall praise and worship the God of Heaven. Do you know Him? Do you know Him? If not, today is a great day to believe on Him, for whosoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved (Romans 10:13).