Sunday, April 14, 2013

The European Common Market?

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. 13:2

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.13:4-10 

    The beast is swift as a leopard, (swiftly he will infiltrate all countries), strong as a bear, (to tear down anyone standing in his way), insatiable as a lion, (being ruler over a few countries will not be enough for him).

The Dragon - Satan

  • has seven heads,
  • ten horns
  • seven crowns upon his heads
  • The dragon has no name of blasphemy.     
  • He wears the crowns on his head because he is the "undisputed"        king of this world.
  • To the beast, he gives His power, 
  • His authority and 
  • His throne

The Beast - The Antichrist

  1. has seven heads,
  2. ten horns
  3. ten crowns upon his horns. 
  4. The beast has the name of blasphemy.
  5. He wears his crowns on his horns because he is not the king but his crowns are in honour of his achievements.  As we already learned "horns" represent strengths or accomplishments.
  6. is just a pawn in the hands of his master, the dragon (Satan). 13:4. 
  7. this mouth is speaking great things. 
  8. blasphemies are given to him. 
  9. Also, the power to reign, for three and a half years, is given to him. 13:5.  
   We read the word he to represent a human.  Some say it is not just one person but an institution created by humans.  Adam Clarke insists that this beast refers to the Roman Catholic Church.  Barnes agrees with him but he is not quite as adamant about it.  

   One major problem with thinking of this as an institution is that it lasted only 3.5 years.  On the other hand, we remind ourselves, again, that the term "3.5 years" may be a figurative number only, without any meaning as to actual time.  It is exactly half of the number of perfection, therefore it might represent evil.

   Without Satan's power, he could do nothing.

   It is strange what the power of suggestion or flattery can do.  The world is worshipping him, saying he is the greatest, and he starts believing it and opens his mouth even against God. 13:6.  

  It brings to mind so many of the movie and sports stars who, by words and awards, have been led to believe, that "they are the greatest".  It has come to a point where public blasphemy against Jehovah, His Church, and all those who dwell in heaven is what one expects to hear from the "stars". 13:6.  

  For how long is the church going to be among those who are mesmerized by those haughty, immoral, self-seeking snobs?  The Lord said to His Church, Come out from among them and be separate. 2 Cor. 6:17

  It is distinctly stated that this prophecy is for the whole world, not just for the Near East; over every tribe, tongue, and nation.13:7   His main thrust will be against Jehovah's chosen: those who actively follow Christ's teachings.  Many saints will be killed as martyrs. 13:7.  

Another Call to Repentance

   All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life ... If anyone has an ear, let him hear.  Surely, this means that if God, in His grace, has let you hear the warning about the last days, the least you can do is pay attention to it.
  The phrase, The Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, is easier to understand as Wuest# has translated it, The Lamb who has been slain (in the mind and purpose of God) since the time when the foundations of the universe were laid.

   In the past, many Bible scholars agreed that the seven heads, ten horns, and ten crowns, referred to Europe in the latter part of the twentieth century, namely: the European Common Market.  As late as 1998, Jack Van Impe, in his book, Final Mysteries Unsealed, insisted that it must be understood that way. 

  However, history moves on, and suppositions must change as the political scene shifts.  Because of that, it behoves all Bible teachers not to be too dogmatic in teaching certain areas of theology.

  As was mentioned in the studies of chapter one, the word “horn” can be a symbol of strength.  According to The Revelation, each of the ten horns is wearing a crown.  

  Perhaps, it is still too soon to pinpoint those “horns”.  However, we are seeing events happening in the Middle East, which causes new speculations.  The allied forces are fighting terrorist groups all over the Near East.  People are disposing of the dictators of their countries, around the Mediterranean Sea.  Perhaps, before all this turmoil is finished ten crowns (rulers) will have fallen.

  He who leads into captivity shall go into captivity; he who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword.  These words seem to fit well into the scenario of those dictators of the countries around the Mediterranean Sea in 2011-2017.

  Those dictators led their own people into captivity, then the dictators were taken captive or killed by their captives.  

# An Expanded Translation, K.W. Wuest.

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