I saw a beast
John sees two beasts. The first beast is
Seven heads and ten horns like the dragon.
A deadly wound which was healed.
The object of worldwide worship.
out of the sea
Daniel's four beasts also rose from the
sea (Dan. 7:2-3).
This speaks of the Gentile origin of the first beast's kingdom.
The second beast is from the
which may indicate his origin from the land of Israel, or that he is
Like the dragon
the first beast has seven heads.
These heads probably represent seven world kingdoms which culminate
in the Beast as
Sumerial (Babel) or Egypt;
Egypt or Assyria;
The beastly kingdom.
After revival from his wound, there is an "eighth head" (Rev. 17:11).
Like the dragon
(Rev. 12:3), these are on the
head -- as Daniel saw
They are identified as
13:2 - leopard, bear, lion
like a leopard... bear... lion
The characteristics of the first three of Daniel's beasts: Babylon,
Medo-Persia, and Greece, are incorporated into the beastly kingdom
This kingdom also has ties to Rome. The final beast in Daniel's vision
continues until the end
and the "people of the prince to come" (Dan. 9:26)
were Romans who destroyed Jerusalem and the temple in A.D. 70.
the dragon gave him his power
He is energized by Satan
13:3 - his wounded head was healed
one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded
This is the
(Rev. 17:10-11). "As if it has been mortally wounded" is the same phrase used of the Lamb in Revelation
his deadly wound was healed
The healing of his wound is the catalyst for his worship
This is probably the "foolish shepherd" (Zec. 11:12-17).
13:4 - who is like the beast?
so they worshiped the dragon
This may or may not be explicit worship. At this point, there is only
who will claim to be
The answer to this dilemma is probably found in understanding the relationship
between the dragon and the beast as one of
they worshiped the beast
His miraculous revival is the catalyst for worldwide worship.
This refers to a revived
individual , not a revived
This is the point where the "abomination of desolation" is initiated
who is like the beast?
His revival from the dead and defeat of the two witnesses
will make him appear unstoppable!
13:5-6 - a blasphemous mouth
a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies
A well-established characteristic of the Antichrist
to continue forty two months
This is the "time and times and half a time," a period of three and one half 360-day years
This begins at the midpoint of Daniel's 70th week, when the Beast breaks
overcomes the two witnesses
This is the period when "the power of the holy people" is completely shattered
while the holy city is being tread underfoot
and the woman flees to the wilderness
13:7 - war with the saints
it was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them
Nothing takes place, especially against God's elect, without God's
permission. Understanding His sovereignty is
Daniel saw this sobering reality:
authority over every tribe, tongue, and nation
Global control, as prophesied by Daniel
This was never fulfilled by Rome in John's day.
13:8 - earth dwellers worship him
All who dwell on the earth will worship him
This does not refer to every
walking the face of the planet. This is a special phrase designating
those who persist in rebellion and rejection at the time of the end.
They pass the point of no return--they are destined for the Lake of Fire
names not written in the Book of Life
Unlike other names which are blotted out, these were
This is a special category of people who refuse to repent in the face of
overwhelming evidence for God. These are the ones He sends His delusion
13:9-10 - let him hear!
if anyone has an ear, let him hear
Where is the phrase "what the Spirit says to the churches" (Rev 2:7, etc.)
The church is gone from the earth, having been raptured to heaven!
leads into captivity, kills with the sword
There are significant textual variations at this verse. It could indicate
retribution by God's justice
or indicate the need to cling to God's sovereignty
The Majority Text favors the latter understanding.
13:11 - a beast from the earth
another of a similar kind to the first beast.
Elsewhere he is called the "false prophet" (Rev. 19:20;
He is not an institution, but an
for he is personally cast into the Lake of Fire
With Satan and the Beast (Antichrist), he comprises a "satanic trinity" of sorts.
out of the earth
This may indicate a Jewish origin. Some take this to indicate an origin
the earth, but there is no support elsewhere for this idea. Only the first
beast is said to be from the abyss.
two horns like a lamb, spoke like a dragon
Two is the number of witness, he is the primary witness to the first beast.
to be a lamb, but he is really a
13:12 - in his presence
all the authority of the first beast in his presence
As the Holy Spirit is to Christ, so the False Prophet is to the Antichrist.
He employs the
power of the first beast as given to him by the dragon. We must not
underestimate what he is capable of!
His power is carefully controlled--he is on a leash!
causes earth dwellers to worship the first beast
Here is the alliance of religion and state at the time of the end!
He functions to direct religious affection to the state leader who
eventually claims deity. As John the Baptist pointed to Messiah Jesus, so
he may fulfill similar expectations
13:13 - great signs
he performs great signs
This is exactly as Paul predicted
The earth dwellers will be subjected to incredible deception for
will send them delusion!
signs are unreliable indicators of God!
13:14 - make an image
make an image to the beast
Jesus said "the abomination of desolation" would
in the holy place. It is an
object or idol(Mat. 24:15).
There appear to be two stages to the desolation:
The Beast (Antichrist) sits in the temple proclaiming himself to be god
The image is set up as a focal point of worship.
13:15 - the image breaths
granted power to give breath to the image
This is the apex of the signs of the False Prophet--the image is brought to
Men have previously worshiped lifeless idols. This living idol will be
cause as many as would not worship the image to be killed
This is the point of no return: take the mark and live destined for
damnation, or refuse and die destined for eternal life.
Those who take the mark are
irredeemable (Rev. 14:9).
This event is typified by the worship of Nebuchadnezzar's statue under
penalty of death
13:16 - receive a mark
to receive a mark
meaning "to engrave, mark or stamp." An indication of absolute loyalty to the Beast.
There is no mention of individualized marks: the
is received by all.
on their right hand
A low-technology approach, such as a tattoo, is more suitable for
the disruptive time of the end.
A low-tech solution is also more easily falsified.
A high-technology solution would be harder to falsify, but also
more prone to failure in a disruptive environment.
or on their foreheads
Many examples of markings on foreheads are found in Scripture:
the high priest
those spared God's judgment
the 144,000 sealed of Israel
The mark identifies the category of the person and reflects their
13:17 - no one may buy or sell
no one may buy or sell
The mark is required to participate in the global economy. Those who refuse
to worship and take the mark are cut off from all supplies and means of
income. They must rely on supernatural provision or the black market.
This probably involves:
A system of exchange which requires the mark. Cash will probably not be used.
Modern inventory tracking will make supplying the black market very
the number of his name
The mark is the same for all who receive it and is related to the name of
the Beast. The reference to a "number" together with a "name" leads most interpreters to favor
as the means for associating a number with the name.
13:18 - 666
the number of a man: 666
In the TR and MT text:
= 600 +
= 60 +
Total = 666.
six is the number of man
Man was created on day six. The triple six may relate to the "unholy trinity." Other occurrences of six in scripture have a negative connotation:
six fingers and toes of ungodly giants
Goliath whose height was six cubits, wore six pieces of armor, and had a
spear head weighting six hundred shekels
Solomon's wages of 666 talents of gold
Nebuchadnezzar's image which was sixty cubits high and six cubits wide
fruitless to speculate
Too many names can be made to generate "666" 2)
The church will not be present when the Beast becomes known
The number of his name is perhaps the least important clue to his identity.
He will not be revealed until the restrainer is removed
We are not to watch for Antichrist, but for
For additional information on this topic, see the commentary.