May 28 2022
Today, Saturday May 28
Who is the 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. Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority. And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And all the world marveled and followed the beast. So they worshiped the dragon who gave authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, "Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?"
Here in Revelation 13, at the point when Satan is cast out of heaven, we begin to learn some details about the second half of the Tribulation when Satan comes down to the earth with great wrath knowing his time is short. Antichrist breaks his peace treaty with Israel and seeks to destroy it. But Israel is protected, and Satan turns his wrath to the rest of mankind.
It is interesting to me that here, John calls the Antichrist a “beast”. Remember that this “beast” was first mentioned in Rev. 11:7, where we were also told about the two witnesses. For the first three and a half years these two prophets could not be harmed because of God’s special protection and their powerful defense system. If anyone tried to kill them, fire would come out of their mouths and destroy them. But finally, right here in the middle of the Tribulation, the “beast that comes up out of the bottomless pit or abyss” (Rev. 11:7) overcomes them and kills them.
Now, put that scene together with the one here in Revelation 13, and we meet the “beast” for the second time. But here he comes out of the sea. Did you wonder why God calls him a “beast”. I’m pretty convinced that if Satan showed up as a person today, he would not be a red hideous creature with a red suit on, with horns, a tail and a pitchfork in his hand. He would be the most handsome man you’ve ever seen. He would be kind, gracious and able to make you think that he was the most charismatic person in the world. That is how he shows up at the first part of the tribulation “on a white horse” to rescue the world from destroying itself with war.
But now in the middle of the Tribulation, God calls him a “beast”. It is if the Antichrist takes off his fancy suit of clothes, his kind, smooth and gracious ways, and turns into an animal, a ferocious beast of the earth. God sees the Antichrist for what he really is! And God is saying to the earth dwellers, “You want to worship the earth and the creatures more than you want to worship Me? I will give you a creature to worship!” When you think of a beast you think of the kind of a person who would kill ten people in a grocery store or a person who would kill nineteen children and two teachers in a classroom. I’ve heard commentators on the news call them evil beast! That is what the Antichrist will become like, and even worse, in the middle of the Tribulation.
Over the years, I heard much speculation about who this “beast” might be. When I was finishing high school in 1968-69, and the Six-Day war took place in Israel, which had the attention of the world, and especially the “prophecy preachers”, we were told that the Antichrist might be Henry Kissinger. The wonderful evangelist, Oliver B Green, wrote in his commentary on 2 Thessalonians, that Antichrist will be Judas Iscariot who comes back from “his place” (Acts 1:25).
Today, some people believe he might the present pope. I’ve heard some say it might be Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the president of Ukraine. That he possibly gets killed or terribly wounded and is miraculously healed or even raise back to life. Honestly, I personally really don’t think it matters who he is, but what matters is that Antichrist will be a very real literal person, who will be like a terrible beast who will cause great terror to everyone when he is given his great authority by Satan to rule over all the earth for 42 months, the last three and a half years of the Tribulation. (Rev. 13:4-6)
I know I have said it before, but it is very obvious that the world is setting up for these end time events with all the wars, the violence, the chaos, the confusion, and the deceptive media and politicians. You don’t know who to believe or trust! Thank the Lord, that we can know we have a Savior who is coming again for us before all this happens in the Tribulation!