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“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?” And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months. Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. 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. If anyone has an ear, let him hear. 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 are still in a parenthesis of personages that began at chapter twelve. Chapter 13 brings us to the sixth personage, the beast out of the sea. This person is the central person of the Tribulation (13:1-10).
 
John describes two beasts, one from the sea and one from the land in this chapter. The first’s beast’s sidekick is the beast out of the land (13:11f).
13:1
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.
Beasts prophetically represent kings and kingdoms. John interprets the seven heads in 17:9-10. This seems to imply that the mountains are symbolic of kingdoms.
The beast out of the sea represents the head of the Revived Roman Empire. The old Roman Empire became modern Europe. In the Tribulation, ten nations from Europe will form the Revived Roman Empire. The city of Rome will be the capital of this Empire. Later in the Tribulation, the world ruler will move his capital to Babylon (Revelation 17:16-18; 18:16-19).
The fourth beast of Daniel also had 10 horns (Daniel 7:7-8; cf. Revelation 13:3; 17:3, 7). The fourth beast is the Roman Empire. The “little horn” is that case is the world ruler. Revelation 13 is an explanation of Daniel 7.
“After this I saw in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, exceedingly strong. It had huge iron teeth; it was devouring, breaking in pieces, and trampling the residue with its feet. It was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns” (Daniel 7:7).
The ten horns are ten kings Who shall arise from this kingdom. And another shall rise after them; He shall be different from the first ones, And shall subdue three kings” (Daniel 7:24).
13:2
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 three animals of this verse refers to the empires of Greece (a leopard, Daniel 7:6), Medo-Persia (a bear, Daniel 7:5) and Babylon (a lion, Daniel 7:4). All these beasts combine into one beast in our passage, the beast not identified by a specific animal in Daniel.
The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority.
Satan directly gave this beast his power. 2 Thessalonians 2:9 says that the lawless one worked miracles, signs and wonders.The Devil gave the world ruler three things:
1) “Power” can refer to miraculous powers (2 Thessalonians 2:9; Hebrews 2:4; Acts 22:22; 6:8). He will perform miraculous deceptions (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12).
2) “His throne” refers to his ruling authority. He is king of the world during the Tribulation.
3) “Great authority” refers to the extent of his rule. His authority extends beyond the 10-nation confederacy (v.7).
13:3
And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed.
One of the seven heads (kingdoms) received a mortal wound by a sword (v.14). This government fell. When Satan resurrected this kingdom, it caused worldwide wonder. This is the resurrection of the old Roman Empire to the Revived Roman Empire.
To which of the seven heads does this refer? 17:8-11 indicates that it is the seventh kingdom. It is the head that “was” (old Rome) and “is not” (present Rome) and “is about to come” (the Revived Roman Empire). In verse two, the beast represents a composite of the kingdoms of Babylon, Greece and Medo-Persia, so it appears that the beast is the world ruler of future kingdoms (13:1,2; 17:8,9).
And all the world marveled and followed the beast.
The word “marveled” means to wonder. Satan overcame the whole world by miraculous workings. The phrase “all the world” indicates that this deception will be worldwide. Maybe they will see this by satellite. This does not necessarily imply that he currently rules over the world.
13:4
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?”
The healing of the beast’s mortal wound causes people to worship the dragon (Satan) and the beast (the world ruler). This is the way that Satan gets people to worship in his counterfeit religion. Their worship extended to the point that they felt that no one could defeat him. In their minds, the beast was invincible. The Bible calls this “strong delusion” (2 Thessalonians 2:11). This is the religion of the Tribulation. Satan designs all religion to worship him. He wants people to do good independently of God.
13:5
And he was given a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies, and he was given authority to continue for forty-two months.
Blasphemy of the beast continued for the last three and a half years of the Great Tribulation (11:2,3; 12:6,14). Satan gives the beast outstanding speaking ability so that he is able to persuade people of all cultures.
13:6
Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven.
The beast’s religious activity is to blaspheme God and all that He represents. Satan even blasphemes the church in heaven.
13:7
It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them.
The beast made war with the Tribulation saints. It will cost many saints their lives to take a stand for God in the Tribulation. Yet, more people will come to Christ by their death than by their lives.
And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation.
The beast rules over the entire world (Daniel 7:23).
13:8
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.
The beast also develops a worldwide religion and demands that everyone in the world worship him (2 Thessalonians 2:4). This is a universal church. The only exception to those who worship him are those who have their names in the Book of Life.
Jesus was not only slain in the first century, He was slain from eternity in terms of God’s eternal plan (Ephesians 1:4).
13:9
If anyone has an ear, let him hear.
John exhorts people who read the book of Revelation to go positive to what he is saying. His challenges to the churches (chapters 2-3) also carried this command. It will be difficult to heed this command under the pressure of the entire world turning to a universal religion. However, there is no invitation to the church here. This is a challenge to the Tribulation saints.
13:10
He who leads into captivity shall go into captivity; he who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword.
If a saint listens to the challenge of verse nine, then he may go into captivity or be killed with the sword. The underlying principle here is that of retribution. It is not God’s will for believers to take things into their own hands. God will take vengeance on those who persecute believers. He who kills by the sword will die by the sword. The way a person lives is the way they will die. The beast and his troops will die the way they live.
Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.
Believers must exercise great patience (steadfastness of soul) and faith during the Tribulation. Patience is not passiveness. It is fidelity in the face of terrible pressure. They operate on faith and not by retaliation.
Principle:
The Tribulation is a period of power politics and one world religion.
Application:
One day a Revived Roman Empire will arise out of Western Europe. A world ruler will surface who will be a demon-possessed political dictator of the Revived Roman Empire.
The Revived Roman Empire is made up of a ten-nation confederacy under the authority of a world ruler. We should take note of what is happening in Western Europe. Individual nations are giving their authority to the European Community (EC). This is the United States of Europe.
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