- The Two Beasts | Revelation 13
- The Two Beasts | Revelation 13
St. John’s vision of the two beasts of Revelation 13 is perhaps the most animated illustration of all, and having vital continuity from Daniels vision of the four beasts in Daniel 7. As John’s vision expounds upon the same theme of Daniel’s vision, it is of the utmost importance to first understand Daniel’s vision of the four beasts, which serves as the basis for John’s vision of the two beasts. Therefore, I do not recommend going through this prophesy until first going through The ‘Little Horn’ of Daniel.
Also, the meaning of this vision of the two beasts is clarified by the context of surrounding prophesies, so following the sequence of prophesies leading up to this is equally important. Therefore, it is also recommended to start at the beginning of the series of prophesies revealed to John, starting with the Seven Seals, then the Seven Trumpets, which introduces the most significant episode of prophesy revealed from The Little Book.
Being an extension of the sixth trumpet, the little book gives three different representations of the same period of time; The first in chapter 11, rendered as The Two Witnesses; the second in chapter 12, rendered as The Woman Flying into the Wilderness; and this vision of The Two Beasts being the third representation.
Each of the three representations of this period gives a different angle of the remnant Church enduring the persecuting power of Papal Rome. While The Two Witnesses of chapter 11 and The Woman Flying into the Wilderness of chapter 12 focus mainly on God’s elect, The Two Beasts of chapter 13 concentrates on the persecuting power of this time.
Revelation 13 opens with John’s vision of the first beast – Then I stood on the sand of the sea; and I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name.
We already observed the sea represents the nations (Rev. 17:15), and beast is a prophetic emblem of a great kingdom (Daniel 7:17), and typically a tyrannical kingdom; And we saw the Devil portrayed as a dragon with seven heads and ten crowned horns, which displayed the same features as this beast with seven heads and ten crowned horns, being a sort of spiritual genetic makeup which identifies the satanic spirit behind this beast, or kingdom. The seven heads and ten crowned horns will be explained by an angel in chapter 17.
We also must remember what horn signifies, denoting to a throne, or dynasty ( Psalm 132:17, 89:24, 92:10, Jer 48:25), which is the supreme governing power of that kingdom. Often times a dynasty is called a kingdom (1 Sam 13:13, 2 Sam 7:13), but the symbolic words ‘beast’ and ‘horn’ serves to differentiate between the ‘kingdom’ and the ‘supreme ruling power’ governing the kingdom.
…and on his heads, a blasphemous name – This distinguishing characteristic depicts a power which is an extreme violation & insult to God, and we have already seen the greatest violation & insult is that impostor who pretends to the very throne of God.
Verse 2: Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet like a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne and great authority.
These details of the first beast portrays a conglomeration of all four beasts of Daniels vision; The winged lion, representing Babylon – the devouring bear, representing Medo-Persia – the four-headed leopard – representing Greece partitioned into four districts – and the monstrous beast – representing Rome, being distinct, yet retained characteristics of the former kingdoms. The main characteristic within this chain of successive empires is the legacy of the Babylonian system, which will be further clarified in the upcoming chapters.
So this beast representing Rome is a conglomeration of Babylon, Persia, Greece, along with its own distinctive features, which serves as a vessel to carry on the Babylonian legacy, empowered by the Devil.
Verse 3: And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded – After the fall of Rome near the end of the 5th century, the apparent demise of the Roman Kingdom seemed beyond recovery while it spiraled into degradation and splintered into countless factions without central power for the next few centuries.
and his deadly wound was healed – Yet, with such developments during the second half of the 8th century, which brought about the revival of the Roman Empire (fourth beast), with the subsequent rise of the ‘Papal Horn’ – which came to dominate over the other ‘horns’ (or sovereigns of the Roman/European nations), the kingdom was resumed under the Papal Caesar.
and all the world marveled and followed the beast. – So was the glory of Rome.
Verse 4: So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast? Who can make war with him?”
The glory of Satan‘s Roman Kingdom was praised & adored, and no doubt, Rome was most formidable, as all who were not in obedience to her ecclesiastical and political order were crushed with inquisitions, wars, crusades, persecutions, massacres – even total annihilation of entire races of people!
Verse 5: And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, – That Horn from Daniel’s vision which had a mouth that spoke pompous words against the Most High – the Papacy, being the mouthpiece of Rome.
…and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months. – 42 months or 3½ years, or 1260 days – is the same as ‘time, times and half a time’ given in Daniel 7, as already explained to be 1260 literal years.
Verse 6: Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. – To see a record of just how great the multitude of Papal blasphemies, see Speaking Great Words and Blasphemy
Verse 7: It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. (As spoken of in Daniel’s visions.) And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue and nation. – A mere secular power could not succeed global domination; the Pharaohs, Babylonian Kings, Roman Emperors and the Papal See knew that ultimate temporal power must have the combination of both political power coupled with religious power. The Papal Caesar’s have mastered this deception so well that few today even know who, what, where and how they control the nations.
Verse 8: All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. – Not just Catholics, but people of all different religions pay their respects to the Pope; those who do not have the seal of God on their forehead.
Verse 9: If anyone has an ear, let him hear. – This being the same way Jesus addressed his messages to the seven churches in the beginning of The Revelation; that is to say, anyone who is inclined to soberly hear with understanding & faith. And for those few who have such an ear, the following message is for their encouragement during dark times:
Verse 10: He who leads into captivity shall go into captivity; he who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints. – We had already observed this principle play out through the previous fulfillment of prophesy as the persecuting powers were inflicting cruel persecutions upon the Church, so was God inflicting upon those powers the same sorrows.
Verse 11: Then I saw another beast (another kingdom) coming out of the earth, – Flashback to when the nations of fallen Rome were scattered into a dry and barren wasteland, as the rise of Papal power, emerging as a dynastic kingdom, seized the newly revived Roman Empire to become the dominant world power.
…and he had two horns like a lamb (like the Lamb of God) and spoke like a dragon. – Presuming the virtue & authority of Christ while speaking pompous words & blasphemies like the Dragon.
Verse 12: And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, (wielding all the power of Rome as the supreme ruling power; this throne/dynasty also rendered as horn elsewhere in prophesy style.) …and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, (such greatness of his supremacy gave glory, praise & adoration to Rome) …who’s deadly wound was healed. (Rome, which had resurrected from the dead).
Verse 13: He performs great signs so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on earth in the sight of men. – When popes would depose kings or excommunicate certain poor souls to their accursed demise, it was like fire striking down from heaven.
Verse 14: And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, – The Roman Church has always been famous for its signs & wonders, being sanctioned by the Papacy, which have served well to “authenticate” its “divine authority” with multitudes of manifestations and apparitions. ...telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived. – The Papal system entailed a process of electing succeeding popes to power, who would become the very express image of Rome.
Verse 15: He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, – Upon the installation of a new pope, the papacy was given life as this common individual was then exalted to be “God on Earth” – holding true to the Mystery Religion of its Babylonian legacy – …that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed. – Being the image, mouthpiece and supreme ruling power of Rome, numerous papal canons & creeds were devised to retain & reinforce such authority, as any who were not of this order were subject to the bloodshed of those notorious Papal persecutions.
Verse 16: He causes all, both small and great, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads… – This concept of the mark has been grossly misunderstood, especially in these latter days. The concept of a mark is first found in Exodus 13:9 & 16 when the LORD declared the Passover Feast to be a sign, like a mark branded on their hand and forehead, to remind them of God’s deliverance. This sacrificial feast was like an emblem which signified their identity as belonging to the LORD, and symbolized God’s deliverance.
This mark of atonement would ultimately be fulfilled by the Lamb of God Who is Christ Jesus. The New Testament also gave signs & characteristics which would differentiate his people from the rest of the world. Jesus said, “…all men will know you are my disciples if you love one another.” ~ John 13:35. Such who abide in His love and faithfully endure in His ways are marked, or sealed by His Spirit. The angel in Revelation 7:3 gave directives, “…until we have sealed the foreheads of the servants of our God.” – in contrast to those who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads. ~ Rev 9:4.
And those who do not have the seal of God on their foreheads would inevitably have the mark of the beast on their foreheads or hand. Yet, just as it is clear that the mark of God is not a literal mark like a tattoo branding, so we should not interpret the mark of the beast as a literal mark or chip. The mark is a figurative expression of where our faith & loyalty lies.
Verse 17: …and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. – The mark, or name, or number – obviously there are many forms of this loyalty, and we have seen more overtly during medieval times how any who were known to be buying and selling with those “heretics” would meet the same bloody fate as them. Currently, the monopolization of resources and monetary systems throughout the world seem to indicate an upcoming new wave of such persecution at a whole new scale and dimension.
Verse 18: Here is wisdom; let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666. – We have all seen & heard all kinds of different men indicted as the “Antichrist” because the numerical value of their name so happens to add up to 666. The fact is that many names and titles can add up to this number. But what if there was a figure who had many different names and titles and it happened that all of them added up to that number?…
Well, the Papacy happens to have many different names and titles, and it just so happens that all these Latin titles add up to 666:
- Vicarius Filii Dei – means “Vicar of the Son of God” and is the official title of the Pope
- Ludovicus – “Vicar of the Court”
- Dux Cleri – “Captain of the Clergy”
- Rex Latinus Sacerdos – “King of the Latin Priests”
- Santa Lux Dei – “Holy Light of God”
For even more examples of papal titles and the numerical calculations, see: http://biblelight.net/666.htm
This concludes our study of The Two Beasts, which is the third and last representation of this prophetic period of 1260 years. However, the next several chapters reveal a detailed display of God’s wrath upon the Papal Beast of this same period, and also gives a more detailed explanation & identification of that most distinctive power. The next chapter 14 gives a portrayal of divine retribution upon this Babylonian beast, where we may continue with The Wrath of God upon the Beast of Babylon.
Main Sources – Word & Spirit of God, Who Was and Is and Is to come – Moses Lowman – “Paraphrases and Notes on the Revelation of St. John“ – John Clark Ridpath – ‘Ridpath’s Universal History’ – Charles Daubuz – “A Perpetual Commentary on the Revelation of St. John“ – E H Broadbent – “The Pilgrim Church” – John Gill – “Gill’s Exposition of the Bible“ – Thomas Newton – “Dissertations of the Prophesies” – Volumes 1-3 – Henry Fliedner – ‘The Martyrdom of a People’ or ‘The Vaudois of Piedmont and Their History‘ – Theodor Griesinger – historian, author ‘The Jesuits: Their Complete History’ – Albert Barnes – “Barnes’ Notes on the Entire Bible – Theodor Griesinger – ‘The Jesuits: Their Complete History’ – Peter DeRosa – ‘Vicars of Christ: ‘The Dark Side of The Papacy’ – Avro Manhattan – ‘The Vatican Holocaust‘ – Peter DeRosa – Catholic Priest, author ‘Vicars of Christ: ‘The Dark Side of The Papacy’ – Adam Clark – “Clark’s Commentary on the Bible“ – E. Boyd Barrett – ‘The Jesuit Enigma’ – John Cornwall – ‘Hitler’s Pope’ – Ian Paisley – ‘The Pope is the Antichrist‘ – Augustus Toplady – ‘The Road To Rome’ – John Foxe – ‘Foxes Book of Martyrs’ – Emanuel M. Josephson – ‘The “Federal” Reserve Conspiracy and Rockefellers’ – E. Boyd Barrett – Ex-Jesuit, author of ‘The Jesuit Enigma’ – Joseph Benson – “Benson’s Commentary on Revelation” – Kenneth Scott Latourette – ‘A History of Christianity’