Revelation 13:1-10

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

THE BEAST OUT OF THE SEA:

THE ANTICHRIST

INTRODUCTION:

In Revelation of Jesus Christ 11:15 the seventh trumpet is sounded. However, the contents of this seventh trumpet are not revealed until Revelation of Jesus Christ 15 and 16 where we find the seven bowl or vial judgments.

In Revelation of Jesus Christ 12-14 the great actors of the time known as the tribulation are introduced in a parenthetical section.

1. The woman, representing Israel

2. The dragon, representing Satan

3. The man-child, referring to Christ

4. Michael, representing the angels

5. Israel, the remnant of the seed of the woman

6. The beast out of the sea, the world dictator

7. The beast out of the earth, the false prophet and religious leader of the world

We see -

I. THE EMERGENCE OF THE BEAST OUT OF THE SEA - 13:1-2

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:1-2 - (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. (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.

In verse 1 as John stands upon the sand of the sea, he sees a beast rising up out of the sea.

I [i.e. John] stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea.

Stood is stood still.

Upon the sand of the sea suggests on the seashore.

(I) saw is the same word translated I beheld many times in Revelation.

What John saw was a beast rise up out of the sea.

A beast is a wild animal, but this beast is no ordinary wild animal.

Rise up is going up or ascending.

Out of the sea indicates the source of this beast. He has been in the sea and is seen coming out of it.

The sea seems to refer to the bottomless pit. In Revelation of Jesus Christ 11:7 the beast that ascends out of the bottomless pit makes war with the two witnesses. Also in Revelation of Jesus Christ 17:8 it is stated that the beast shall ascend out of the bottomless pit.

This beast is described as having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. This description is similar to, but not identical with, the description of the dragon in Revelation of Jesus Christ 12:3 who is identified in 12:9 as Satan. Both the dragon and the beast have seven heads and ten horns, but the dragon in 12:3 has seven crowns upon its seven heads.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 12:3 - (3) And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 12:9 - And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

Here in Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:1 , however, the beast has ten crowns upon its ten horns. This similarity is intentional and shows that the beast is to be connected with Satan and is satanically empowered but also that he differs from Satan.

The crowns are diadems, the crowns worn by rulers.

Upon his heads the name of blasphemy further describes this beast out of the sea and suggests that a blasphemous name has been written upon each of his heads. The blasphemous name shows the Satanic character of each of these heads and its opposition to God and the things of God.

The beast in Revelation of Jesus Christ 13 represents both the antichrist and his empire, which is a form of imperial government. An imperial government is one which extends the rule or authority of an empire or nation over foreign countries.

The beast is actually imperial government, and each head represents one of its empires. As indicated by Revelation of Jesus Christ 17:10 , the seven heads represent seven successive empires, all of which were imperial governments: 1) Egypt, 2) Assyria, 3) Babylon, 4) Medo-Persia, 5) Greece, 6) Rome, and 7) the revived Roman Empire represented by the antichrist.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 17:9-11 - (9) And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. (10) And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space. (11) And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition.

Back to Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:1

The horns represent ten kings who will reign at the same time as the beast and who will willingly subordinate themselves to the beast or the antichrist.

The fact that there are ten horns or ten powers suggests that there are ten powers acting as one. It is reminiscent of the ten toes on the vision in Daniel 2 . It suggests a confederation of nations in the revived Roman Empire headed by the antichrist. The ten horns are identified in Revelation of Jesus Christ 17

Revelation of Jesus Christ 17:12-13 - (12) And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. (13) These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 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 seat, and great authority.

In verse 2 the beast who derives his power, his throne, and his authority from the dragon is described.

The beast which I saw refers to the beast John saw in verse 1.

Saw is the same word often translated beheld in Revelation.

Was like unto is was of the same nature as, was like, or was similar to.

This beast is similar to a leopard in that it runs really fast.

Also, his feet were as the feet of a bear. The feet of a bear are very powerful.

A third characteristic of this beast out of the sea is his mouth was as the mouth of a lion. A lion has a very powerful jaw and very sharp teeth with which it tears its victims.

In Daniel 7 Babylon is represented as a lion, Medo-Persia is represented as a bear, and Greece is represented as a leopard. Whereas Daniel looked forward in time to these empires and mentioned them in the order of their proximity to him, John looks backward in time to these same empires and mentions them in the order of their proximity to him, thus reversing Daniel's order.

Daniel 7:1-8 - (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. (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. (3) And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another. (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. (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. (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. (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. (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.

Back to Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:2

The implication of the fact 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, is that the revived Roman Empire as headed by the antichrist has the characteristics of these three empires prior to him.

Another truth about this beast out of the sea is that the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. In chapter 12 the dragon is identified as Satan. Here the beast is distinguished from the dragon in that the dragon gives the beast these three things: his power, and his seat, and great authority. In both cases his may refer to the dragon or to this beast out of the sea, but the meaning is the same: this beast's power and seat come from the dragon and are given to the beast. Were it not for the dragon, the beast out of the sea would have no power or seat.

Power is used in the sense of might, strength, or force.

Seat is throne and refers to his position as ruler.

Great authority is much authority, great ability to do something, great or much capability, great or much might, or great or much power. With his power, his throne, and his authority, all given to him by Satan, the antichrist will rule the world in the first half of the tribulation through his revived Roman empire. Without his power, his throne, and his authority given to him by Satan, the beast out of the sea (or the antichrist) would be nothing.

Next we see -

II. THE DEADLY WOUND OF THE BEAST - 13:3

Revelation of Jesus Christ 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.

In verse 3 this beast out of the sea is seen to have a deadly wound that is healed to the astonishment of the whole world.

I saw is I beheld where I is John.

What John saw is one of his heads as it were wounded to death.

His refers to the beast out of the sea, and one of his heads is one of the seven heads.

As it were wounded is literally as wounded. It means that one of his heads was seen as having been previously wounded.

To death indicates the seriousness of the wound. The wound killed this particular head. It was already dead when John saw it in this vision.

And his deadly wound was healed.

Although one of the beast's heads received a deadly wound, it did not adversely affect the beast himself. The beast lived before the deadly wound to one of his heads occurred, and he continued to live after the wound had been healed.

Was healed (or was restored) suggests that the beast was made alive again. The wound was apparently so severe that people believed that the beast himself had been killed. However, he was cured of the deadly wound.

This head wounded with a deadly wound is the Roman Empire which for many years made the beast appear to be dead. A revived Roman Empire headed by the beast eventually takes its place.

The beast represents not only the antichrist but also the imperial government which takes the form of the empire over which he reigns. Imperial government as represented by this beast out of the sea has previously ruled Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome; but it did not die with the fall of the Roman Empire as previously thought. The Roman Empire was only one of its heads, but it was not the beast itself. The revived Roman Empire will eventually take the place of the former Roman Empire and be headed by the antichrist, and the beast out of the sea will eventually be seen to be still alive and well.

As a result of the healing of the deadly wound, all the world wondered after the beast.

All the world is the whole earth.

Wondered is was amazed. In fact, the wonder or amazement is so great that the whole earth is seen worshiping the beast in the next verse.

After the beast implies that the people of the earth are pursuing after the beast in their wonder or amazement. As a result, they are seeking him in order that they might worship him.

We also see -

III. THE WORSHIP OF SATAN BY ALL THE WORLD - 13:4

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:4 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?

In verse 4 the whole world is seen to worship both the dragon and the antichrist. They realize that there is no one else like the antichrist or able to successfully war against him.

And they worshipped the dragon and they worshipped the beast means that they bowed down and worshiped, they did obeisance to, they prostrated themselves before, or they reverenced both the dragon, i.e. Satan, and the beast out of the sea, i.e. the antichrist, the world ruler empowered by Satan.

Which gave power unto the beast refers to the dragon, i.e. to Satan.

Power is authority or absolute power.

Unto the beast is simply to the beast.

The beast is the beast out of the sea and refers to the antichrist as well as to his empire.

In their worship of the beast they were repeatedly saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?

The implied answer to both questions is no one or nobody.

Who is like unto the beast? means, Who is of the same nature as the beast? or, Who is similar to the beast? People are amazed at the beast out of the sea, whether it is referring to the antichrist or to his empire.

Who is able to make war with him implies, Who is able to successfully make war with him? or, Who is able to make war with him and win? People are amazed at the military might of his empire.

In addition we see -

IV. THE BLASPHEMOUS CHARACTER OF THE BEAST AS WORLD RULER - 13:5-6

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:5-6 - (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.

According to verse 5, a mouth characterized by speaking great things and by speaking blasphemous things is given to the beast out of the sea, i.e. to the antichrist. Furthermore, he has power to continue for a period of forty-two months, the length of the great tribulation.

There was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies is literally a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies was given to him.

There was given unto him implies that Satan who empowered this beast, i.e. the antichrist, gave him his mouth. Of course, God is at work behind the scenes controlling the entire matter. Ultimately, what was given to the antichrist must come to him by God's permission. God's control of the situation is seen in His limiting the antichrist to forty-two months.

What comes out of someone's mouth indicates what kind of character he has. What comes out of the beast's mouth is indicated by speaking great things and blasphemies.

The tense of speaking, i.e. saying, declaring, or uttering, indicates that he is continually, habitually, customarily, or repeatedly saying these things.

Great things and blasphemies characterize what he says. Great things are the sort of things which impress people, and blasphemies are slanders or defamations directed against God and the things of God.

Also, power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.

Power is the same word translated authority in verse 1 and power in verse 4. In this context it suggests authority or absolute power.

Unto him means absolute power was given to the antichrist.

To continue suggests to exercise authority. The same word translated to continue in this verse is translated exerciseth in verse 12.

Forty and two months means throughout forty-two months, an uninterrupted period of time. The forty-two months is the length of the great tribulation.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.

It is evident that blasphemy is not an incidental feature of his kingdom but one of its main features, and he is described in verse 6 as blaspheming against God, against the name of God, and against the Tabernacle of God, as well as against them that dwell in heaven. As Satan's mouthpiece, he utters the ultimate in unbelief and irreverence in relation to God.

In verse 5 it was learned that this beast spoke blasphemous things. In verse 6 he blasphemes God, God's name, God's tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven.

He is the beast out of the sea, i.e. the antichrist.

Opened his mouth suggests that he opens his mouth in order to speak.

In blasphemy is for blasphemy, for slander, or for defamation.

Against God indicates the One against Whom (or toward Whom) the beast's (or antichrist's) blasphemy is directed.

To blaspheme his name indicates the purpose for which the beast out of the sea opens his mouth in blasphemy against God. It means to slander (or to defame) God's name.

And his tabernacle is God's heavenly tabernacle; and them that dwell in heaven are the ones who are dwelling in heaven, likely Michael and his angels who defeated Satan and his angels and cast them down to the earth as reported in Revelation of Jesus Christ 12:7-9 rather than those saved persons who have died and gone to heaven. It does not seem that the antichrist's (and Satan's) animosity would still be directed against those martyrs whom he has already killed; rather, it seems that his animosity would be directed against those who had defeated Satan, the one empowering the antichrist.

Next, we see -

V. THE UNIVERSAL DOMINION OF THE BEAST - 13:7

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:7 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.

In verse 7 the beast makes war with the saints of God and defeats them. These are saved people still alive on the earth. He is also given power to rule the world.

It was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them indicates that someone outside of himself gave him this ability. According to verse 4, it is Satan who gives it to him, but ultimately it has to be God the Father Who permits or allows it.

Unto him is to the beast (i.e. to the antichrist).

The first thing given to him is to make war with the saints. It means that he is carrying on a military campaign against the saints, i.e. against saved people, during the great tribulation.

A second thing given unto the beast is to overcome them, i.e. to conquer them or to prevail against them, i.e. to prevail against the saints.

Furthermore, power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.

Power is the same word translated authority in verse 2 and power in verses 4-5. It is again used in the sense of authority or absolute power.

Was given him is was given to him, i.e. was given to the antichrist, again indicates that someone gave him his power. This someone is Satan, but God the Father is still on the throne and in control and is the One Who ultimately allows this.

Over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations indicates how widespread his absolute power is.

It extends over all kindreds, i.e. over each (or every) nation (or people).

And (all) tongues, i.e. (each) or (every) tongue, indicates that the beast's absolute power also extends over every language.

And (all) nations or each (or every) nation indicates that the beast's absolute power also extends over every nation (or people). His power is worldwide.

The King James translators have translated kindreds, tongues, and nations as plurals even though all three are singulars in the Greek text. This is warranted, however, because if absolute power is given to the beast out of the sea (or to the antichrist) over each and every nation (and it is), then it is given unto him over all nations worldwide. Likewise, if absolute power is given to him over each and every tongue (or language) (and it is), then it is given unto him over all tongues or languages worldwide.

The time of this worldwide authority is indicated in verse 5 as being forty-two months, i.e. the great tribulation. It is evident, however, that as the great tribulation moves on to its end, a gigantic world war is under way, continuing to the time of the second coming of Christ. This war is a rebellion against the universal rule of the beast, and its climax comes at the very end of the tribulation.

We also see -

VI. THE UNIVERSAL WORSHIP OF THE BEAST - 13:8

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:8 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.

Just as the entire world is under the political domination of the beast or antichrist, so all the world except the saints will worship him.

According to verse 8, all those who dwell on the earth, whose names are not written in the book the life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, will worship the beast out of the sea.

All is qualified in two ways.

First it is limited to those that dwell upon the earth. It is all the ones who are living upon the earth.

Secondly, all is limited to those whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

Thus, all is limited or restricted in meaning to all unsaved persons living on the earth.

Shall worship him means shall bow down and worship him, shall do obeisance to him, or shall reverence him, where him is the beast out of the sea, i.e. the antichrist. It is something which will definitely occur in the future.

Whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb implies a current state of being. It may be because their names have not been written in the past with the result that they are still not written. Thus, they remain unwritten. It may be better, however, to understand that the names of all persons were written in the book of life of the Lamb but that those who have totally rejected the Lamb have been permanently removed and are not written in it any longer.

In Revelation of Jesus Christ 3:5 it was learned that Christ will never blot out the name of an overcomer from the book of life. The import of this is that He will blot out the names of those who have totally and permanently rejected Him.

In the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world indicates where these names are not written. This is because they are unsaved persons.

One cannot help but be reminded that John also wrote in Revelation of Jesus Christ 20:15 , And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

The Lamb slain is the Lamb slaughtered where slain indicates an action done by violence and as having occurred in the past with its result continuing on. In other words, it indicates a state of being. This Lamb was introduced in Revelation of Jesus Christ 5:6 as a Lamb as it had been slain.

From the foundation of the world indicates that long before sin entered into the world and affected humanity, God knew that it would and laid plans for Christ to die upon the cross and pay for the sins of all humanity and thereby make reconciliation with God possible. God was not taken by surprise when Adam and Eve sinned. In the mind of God, salvation had already been accomplished before the creation of the world.

Although it is possible both grammatically and scripturally that from the foundation of the world be understood with slain as well as with written, it is best understood with slain because of the proximity of slain and because of its distance from written in the text. The Lamb slain from the foundation of the world is reminiscent of I Peter 1:18-21 .

I Peter 1:18-21 - (18) Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; (19) But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: (20) Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, (21) Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

Finally, we see -

VII. THE EXHORTATION TO HEAR - 13:9-10

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:9-10 - (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.

In verse 9 everyone is called upon to listen.

If any man have an ear is a simple condition which, for sake of discussion, is assumed to be true. Most people this writer has ever seen seem to have at least one ear; therefore, it is written to everyone.

Any man is anyone, anybody, someone, or somebody.

Let him hear is let anyone who has an ear hear (or listen) or anyone who has an ear must hear (or must listen). This means that he needs to pay attention to what John is writing.

Revelation of Jesus Christ 13:10 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.

It is the law of divine retribution. Those who persecute the saints and lead them into captivity must in turn suffer the righteous wrath of God.

In verse 10 is seen the ultimate doom of the beast out of the sea. As the beast has led into captivity, he will go into captivity; and as the beast has killed with the sword, he will be killed with the sword. This encourages the saints to endure in their faith. Two proverbial statements are made in order to encourage believers.

The first one is he that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity.

He that leadeth into captivity in the Greek text is actually a simple condition which, for sake of discussion, is assumed to be true. It is literally if anyone [i.e. if someone or somebody] leads into captivity.

Inasmuch as it is not clear in any particular situation whether this condition is actually going to be met, if should be understood in the sense of assuming that.

Leadeth means brings, calls together, or gathers.

Into captivity suggests something which occurs mostly in war. People have been taken prisoner and forced into slavery for the rest of their lives.

Shall go into captivity is predictive of a future event which is definitely going to occur.

The second proverbial statement is he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword.

He that killeth with the sword is another simple condition which, for sake of discussion, is assumed to be true. It is literally if anyone will kill with a sword.

Inasmuch as it is not clear whether anyone will actually kill with a sword and thereby meet this condition, if should be understood in the sense of assuming that.

Must be killed with the sword indicates what is necessary for the one who kills with the sword.

Here means in these two proverbial statements. The beast out of the sea leads people into captivity, and he kills people with the sword. He is going to get what is coming to him. He will eventually die and spend eternity in the lake of fire.

Is suggests something which is always true.

The patience is the endurance or the steadfastness. It means that it is one of the things that keeps believers going in the most difficult of circumstances. It enables them to endure whatever comes their way and to remain steadfast no matter what happens.

The faith is the trust or the belief. They take God at His word and believe whatever He says. When He advises them that the beast or the antichrist will eventually be cast into the lake of fire where he will spend eternity, they believe God and look forward to the day when it will occur.

CONCLUSION:

Next time we'll consider The Beast out of the earth: the False Prophet