Revelation 13:1 ‘And I saw a beast coming out of the sea. He had ten horns, seven heads with ten crowns on his horns and on each head a blasphemous name.
The beast comes up out of the ‘sea‘ represents the anti-Christ emerging in the midst of societal chaos and anarchistic disorder. This is the usual pattern for emerging dictators.
Whilst the dragon of Revelation 12:3 was an evil parody of God, this beast will be an evil parody of Christ Jesus. The dragon bore his crowns on his head denoting evil authority whilst this beast bears his crowns on his horns denoting evil military power.
The seven heads denotes past empires that have come and gone but yet still resound in human society. He is the embodiment of past satanic evil. More on this when we reach Revelation 17:9.
Revelation 13:2 The beast I saw resembled a leopard but had feet like those of a bear, and a mouth like that of a lion.’
This takes us straightway to the vision of Daniel chapter seven where he sees four empires arise. Hang on tight, this might be a bit of a head-full!
Daniel 4:4 describes a lion that represents the Babylonian empire; Daniel 4:5 describes a bear that represents the Medo-Persian empire; Daniel 4:6 describes a leopard that represents the Greek empire and Daniel 4:7 describes a fourth unnamed beast that was different from the others.
This fourth empire is described as terrifying, crushing, devouring and frightening. We will see later that this empire will run its course but then return as an end-time reprise in Revelation 17:9-11.
But the good news in Daniel 2:34-35 is that a rock was cut out but not by human hands, that will smash this end-time empire and become a huge mountain that will fill the whole earth.
This rock is the Kingdom of God that will reign for all eternity. And what of the previous empires?
Daniel 2:35a assures us they will be swept away by the wind without leaving a trace!
But what is this fourth empire and what will its end-time reprise be like?
Keep tuned in!