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Revelation 13

Dr. Constable's Expository NotesConstable's Expository Notes

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2. The activity of Satan’s agents ch. 13

John also received information about Satan’s chief instruments through whom he will pursue his goals during the Tribulation. He recorded this to enable his readers to identify these individuals and to respond properly. This chapter records the continuation of the dragon’s activities that John described in chapter 12.

Verse 1

The dragon stood on the seashore watching a beast come out of the sea, in John’s vision (cf. Daniel 7:2-3; Daniel 7:7-8; Daniel 7:19-27; Job 40-41). The AV and NKJV rendering "I stood" does not have as good textual support, I believe, as the NASB and NIV "he stood."

". . . people in Asia minor thought of whatever came ’from the sea’ as foreign and whatever came from the land as native. That is, one of the initial expressions of the first beast was Rome, whose governors repeatedly came by sea to Ephesus. Roman ships literally seemed to be rising out of the sea as they appeared on the horizon off the coast of Asia Minor." [Note: Beale, p. 682.]

The implication is that the dragon summoned the beast out of the sea. [Note: Robertson, 6:397; Johnson, p. 523; Mounce, p. 248.] Evidently this was part of his plan to destroy the rest of the woman’s offspring (Revelation 12:17).

"The Sea is an apt symbol of the agitated surface of unregenerate humanity (cf. Isa. lvii. 20), and especially of the seething cauldron of national and social life, out of which the great historical movements of the world arise; cf. Isa. xvii. 12 . . ." [Note: Swete, p. 161.]

"Without exception the imagery of the sea monster is used throughout the OT to represent evil kingdoms who persecute God’s people . . ." [Note: Beale, p. 683.]

When the dragon was in position, John saw a new scene in his vision ("I saw," Gr. eidon). The sea may represent the mass of humanity (cf. Revelation 17:15; Daniel 7:2-3). However this interpretation cannot explain the sands of the seashore or the origin of the beast from the earth (Revelation 13:11). A literal sea is impossible since this beast is a person, as we shall see. The ancient world often associated evil with the sea and used the sea as a figure for the abyss (cf. Job 26:12-13; Psalms 74:13-14; Psalms 87:4; Psalms 89:9-10; Isaiah 27:1; Isaiah 51:9-10; Isaiah 57:20; Daniel 7:3; Romans 10:7). [Note: Swete, p. 158; Mounce, pp. 249-50; Morris, p. 165.] This figurative use of the sea seems best since elsewhere John said that the beast came out of the abyss (Revelation 11:7; Revelation 17:8).

The beast had many of the same characteristics as the dragon. However they also correspond to the features of the fourth kingdom that Daniel saw in his vision (cf. Daniel 7:7-8). In Daniel’s vision the 10 horns represented 10 rulers (Daniel 7:24). Here the Antichrist has authority over 10 rulers (cf. Revelation 17).The view that the first beast is a real person who will rule the world during the Great Tribulation (Daniel 7:25)-rather than the personification of evil, or the threat of heresy, or Nero revived (based on the Nero redivivus legend), or false prophets collectively-dates back to the early church fathers. [Note: See Johnson, pp. 521-25, 530. See Beasley-Murray, pp. 210-11, and Swete, p. 163, for a good summary of the Nero redivivus view. See also Andy M. Woods, "The First Beast of Revelation 13 Has Not Yet Appeared in World History: A Comparison of the Preterist and Futurist Views" (Th.M. thesis, Dallas Theological Seminary, 2002).]

"The ten-nation confederacy of the future anticipated in these prophecies [i.e., Daniel 2, 7] would naturally be considered a revival of the Roman Empire if for no other reason than that it is portrayed as an integral part of the fourth empire." [Note: John F. Walvoord, "Revival of Rome," Bibliotheca Sacra 126:504 (October-December 1969):323. See also idem, The Nations . . ., pp. 83, 102; and idem, "Prophecy of the Ten-Nation Confederacy," Bibliotheca Sacra 124:494 (April-June 1967):99-105.]

Like Satan, the beast had seven heads that apparently represent the remaining seven rulers of nations after three of them disappear (Daniel 7:8). The 10 regal crowns are symbols of governmental authority (cf. Revelation 12:3).

"There are a number of suggestions as to why the diadems are placed on the horns rather than on the heads of the beast. The most plausible is that his claim to authority rests on brute force." [Note: Mounce, p. 250.]

The blasphemous names reflect the beast’s opposition to God (cf. Revelation 13:5-6; 2 Thessalonians 2:4).

The beast is evidently Antichrist who is the head of a future empire (cf. Revelation 13:8; Revelation 13:18; Revelation 17:8). [Note: Walvoord, The Revelation . . ., p. 200; Swete, p. 161; Lee, 4:689-90; Johnson, p. 521; Thomas, Revelation 8-22, p. 153; Beckwith, p. 636.] No past governmental entity is similar enough to what John described to qualify as the fulfillment of this empire. The beast embodies the malevolent forces operative in this empire. [Note: Philip E. Hughes, The Book of Revelation, p. 145.] He will be the deification of secular authority. [Note: Mounce, p. 251.]

The repetition of heads, horns, and diadems (Revelation 12:3) suggests that there is a close affinity between the dragon and this beast. Yet there are some differences in the descriptions of these heads, horns, and crowns.

"The conflict of Revelation 12:1-5 transpires while the seven world empires are running their course, but at Revelation 13:1 the focus has shifted to the last of these kingdoms when the beast will enjoy his supremacy over the ten kings who act as subrulers under his authority (cf. Revelation 17:12)." [Note: Thomas, Revelation 8-22, p. 154. Cf. Scott, p. 270; and Smith, A Revelation . . ., p. 193.]

John received more information about the identity of these heads, horns, and diadems in chapter 17.

Verses 1-4

Characteristics of the beast 13:1-4

Verses 1-10

The beast out of the sea 13:1-10

John stressed three things about this beast: his conspiracy with the dragon (Revelation 13:3-4), his success in deceiving the whole world (Revelation 13:3-4; Revelation 13:8), and his success in temporarily defeating God’s saints (Revelation 13:6-7 a). [Note: Paul S. Minear, I Saw a New Earth: An Introduction to the Visions of the Apocalypse, p. 118.]

"The initial description of this creature identifies it as the culminating empire of Daniel’s vision of the end (Daniel 7), but it speedily becomes evident that John has in view the empire as embodied in its ruler." [Note: Beasley-Murray, p. 206. See also Daniel K. K. Wong, "The Beast from the Sea in Revelation 13," Bibliotheca Sacra 160:639 (July-September 2003):337-48.]

Verse 2

This beast possessed qualities of three animals, perhaps swiftness, agility, vigilance, craftiness, and fierce cruelty; brutality; and strength and majesty. In Daniel, these animals represented three kingdoms that previously ruled the world. These kingdoms are Greece (Daniel 7:6), Medo-Persia (Daniel 7:5), and Babylon (Daniel 7:4). The fourth kingdom that Daniel described (Daniel 7:23) includes Antichrist’s kingdom. The kingdom the beast rules and represents seems to reflect his personal qualities.

"The fact that the leopard of Greece, the bear of Medo-Persia, and the lion of old Babylon (Daniel 7) are all seen in this Beast, shows how all-inclusive of human things will be his character; he sums up all the brilliancy (Greece), all of the massive ponderousness of power (Persia), all of the absolute autocratic royal dominion (Babylon), that the Gentiles have ever known." [Note: Newell, p. 184.]

Antichrist will derive his power and position from Satan (cf. 2 Thessalonians 2:9). Similarly Jesus Christ receives these things from His Father.

Verse 3

Since the beast’s heads represent nations (Revelation 13:1), Revelation 13:3 seems to be saying that one of the nations under Satan’s authority perished, but then it revived. Another possibility is that the beast himself died and then experienced resurrection. [Note: Gregory H. Harris, "The Wound of the Beast in the Tribulation," Bibliotheca Sacra 156:624 (October-December 1999):459-68; et al.]

Verse 4

The apparent resurrection of this nation will be so amazing to the world that many people will give their allegiance and their worship to Antichrist (cf. Revelation 13:8; Revelation 13:12; Revelation 14:9; Revelation 14:11; Revelation 20:4). In so doing they will also submit to Satan who is behind him. Antichrist’s ability to revive this nation will make him appear invincible. The expression, "Who is like the beast?" (Revelation 13:4) seems to be a parody of Old Testament praises of God (cf. Exodus 15:11; Psalms 35:10; Psalms 113:5; Isaiah 40:18; Isaiah 40:25; Isaiah 46:5; Jeremiah 49:19; Micah 7:18). Note that it is Antichrist’s power, not his character, that will elicit worldwide admiration. Later the Lamb will prove superior to the beast (Revelation 14:1-5; Revelation 17:14; Revelation 19:11-21).

Verse 5

God (cf. Revelation 6:4; Revelation 6:8; Revelation 7:2; Revelation 9:5; Daniel 4:17; Daniel 4:25; Daniel 4:32) will give authority to the beast to act as he will during the Great Tribulation, the last three and one-half years of the Tribulation.

Verses 5-8

Activities of the beast 13:5-8

The notable abilities of the beast are blasphemy against God and deception of people. These activities also marked Antiochus Epiphanes, the prototype of Antichrist (Daniel 7:6; Daniel 7:8; Daniel 7:11; Daniel 7:20; Daniel 7:25; Daniel 12:7).

Verse 6

He will blaspheme God by claiming to be God (2 Thessalonians 2:4). This is evidently what he will do throughout the Great Tribulation, not just at one point in it. Enoixen, "he opened," is a constative aorist. [Note: Robertson, 6:401.] The phrase "he opened his mouth" often indicates the beginning of a prolonged discourse (cf. Matthew 5:2; Acts 8:35). He will speak against God and God’s dwelling place, His heavenly tabernacle (Daniel 7:25). The phrase "those who dwell in heaven" defines the tabernacle in terms of its inhabitants, namely, God and the holy angels. Apparently the beast will share the dragon’s antagonism to God and the angels for having cast the dragon out of heaven (Revelation 12:7-9; Revelation 12:12).

Verse 7

He will wage war against believers and overcome them (i.e., kill them, Revelation 13:15) and will become a worldwide dictator (Daniel 7:21; Daniel 7:23). No other ruler has ever been able to rule the entire world.

"Incidentally this shows that something more than the Neronic persecution is in mind, for that was not world-wide." [Note: Morris, p. 169. See Mark L. Hitchcock, "A Critique of the Preterist View of Revelation 13 and Nero," Bibliotheca Sacra 164:655 (July-September 2007):341-56.]

"This verse furnishes a most important key to the proper understanding of events occurring during the tribulation period. Since authority is given to him [the beast] over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations upon his ascent from the sea, any passage pertaining to rivalry of kings or conflict among kings in the ’time of the end’ (such as Daniel 7:8; Daniel 7:24; Daniel 11:40-44) must refer to a time preceding this universal dictatorship and therefore to the first half of the tribulation." [Note: Smith, A Revelation . . ., p. 199.]

Verse 8

Unbelievers around the world will not only serve Antichrist but also worship him. The "book of life of the Lamb" contains the names of God’s elect (cf. Daniel 12:1-2; Ephesians 1:4). Most if not all true believers will refrain from worshipping Antichrist (cf. Matthew 24:24). The long and unusual description of unbelievers in this verse has the effect of assuring believers during this time that they are indeed secure.

Verse 9

God and John called on the readers of this book to pay attention. Particularly those living at this time in the future should do so. Note that John made no reference to "the churches" as in similar exhortations in chapters 2 and 3 (Revelation 2:7; Revelation 2:11; Revelation 2:17; Revelation 2:29; Revelation 3:6; Revelation 3:13; Revelation 3:22). This supports the fact that Christians (i.e., believers living in the church age) will not be present on the earth at this time (Revelation 3:10). It is what follows (Revelation 13:10) that this verse announces, not what has preceded.

Verses 9-10

The response of believers to the beast 13:9-10

Verse 10

God promised the saints that those He has destined for captivity (i.e., Antichrist, his followers, and the saints) will eventually end up as captives (cf. Jeremiah 15:2; Jeremiah 43:11). Those who kill others (the others being believers in Jesus Christ, Revelation 13:7) will die (cf. Matthew 26:52). This assurance that God will execute justice should encourage the saints to persevere steadfastly and to trust God during this period of intense persecution and martyrdom (cf. Revelation 14:12). Possibly God meant that believers should willingly submit to whatever fate was in store for them and not resist their persecutors. [Note: Swete, p. 168.] The whole verse is an encouragement for believers to submit to the sovereignty of God realizing that He has permitted Antichrist’s activity but that they are secure. It also assures them of divine retribution and urges them to persevere faithfully.

The First Beast Is The Little Horn
The First Beast
(Revelation 13:1-8)
The Little Horn
(Daniel 7:7-28)
"All who dwell on the earth will worship him" (Revelation 13:8).Both have a worldwide empire."It will devour the whole earth and tread it down and crush it" (Daniel 7:7; Daniel 7:23).
"The woman . . . was nourished [in the wilderness] for a time and times and half a time" (Revelation 12:14).Both have victory over the saints for three and one-half years."The saints . . . will be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time" (Daniel 7:25).
"The beast was . . . thrown alive into the lake of fire" (Revelation 19:20).Messiah destroys both at His second advent."The beast was slain . . . and his dominion will be taken away, annihilated and destroyed forever" (Daniel 7:11; Daniel 7:26).
"Those who had not worshiped the beast . . . came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years" (Revelation 20:4-6).Immediately following both their destructions the saints will receive the messianic kingdom."Then the sovereignty, the dominion, and the greatness of all the kingdoms under the whole heaven will be given to the people of the saints" (Daniel 7:22; Daniel 7:27).

Verse 11

Kai eidon, "and I saw," marks another new scene in the vision that John had been observing since Revelation 12:1 (cf. Revelation 13:1). John saw another beast (Gr. allo therion, one of the same kind) rise to prominence out of the earth. The Greek word translated "earth" (ges) refers to the land in contrast to the sea (Revelation 13:1).

"In the minds of the ancients, none of the terrestrial animals could compare in magnitude with monsters from the deep, so coming out of the earth in itself indicated a degree of inferiority in power of the second beast to the first." [Note: Thomas, Revelation 8-22, p. 172.]

"The second beast represented native political and economic authorities [to people living in Asia Minor in John’s day]." [Note: Beale, p. 682.]

It is probably not valid to see a reference to Palestine in this reference to the earth.

"To argue that the earth means Palestine and that therefore this character is a Jew is reading into the passage more than it says." [Note: Walvoord, The Revelation . . ., p. 205.]

If the sea represents the abyss (Revelation 13:1), the earth probably represents planet earth. Clearly this second beast is a servant of the dragon, but his connections with the dragon are not as obvious as those of the first beast.

His two horns may symbolize some political power but less power than that of the first beast (cf. Revelation 13:1; Revelation 5:6). [Note: Stuart, p. 646.] Probably in his external conduct this second beast was peaceful, as a lamb, but his words will prove satanic (cf. Matthew 7:15). His words reveal his true loyalty. He is a false prophet (Revelation 16:13; Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:10).

"Preterist interpreters admit that it is impossible to find any ancient historical figure who is the counterpart of the second beast." [Note: Ladd, p. 183.]

Verses 11-18

The beast out of the earth 13:11-18

Most interpreters who see the first beast as an individual also see the second beast as one. Others who see the first beast as a power or movement tend to view the second beast similarly. [Note: E.g., ibid., p. 172.] Many of the Reformers identified the second beast as the papacy or as specific popes. Many modern interpreters view the first beast as the personification of secular power in opposition to the church and the second beast as the personification of false religion. [Note: E.g., Mounce, p. 349.] However it seems best to take these beasts as representing individuals.

Verse 12

The second beast will represent the first beast by acting as his prophet (Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:10; cf. Exodus 7:1). Compare the ministries of Moses and Aaron (Exodus 4:16; Exodus 7:9), and the Lord and Elijah (1 Kings 17:1). He will be his effective agent in directing the persecution of believers. He will lead the worship of the first beast evidently as the leader of a worldwide religious movement. This is a satanic counterfeit of the Holy Spirit’s ministry of pointing people to Christ. The reference to the first beast’s fatal wound being healed also highlights the comparison with Christ who rose from the dead. Believers worship Christ because He rose from the dead (cf. Acts 17:30-31), and unbelievers will worship the beast because he did a similar thing (cf. Revelation 13:14). Here some type of personal rejuvenation seems to be in view, not just the revitalization of a nation (cf. Revelation 13:3).

Verse 13

Like Pharaoh’s magicians, only with greater effectiveness, the second beast will have authority to perform supernatural miracles (cf. Exodus 7:11; Exodus 7:22; Exodus 8:7). These will be genuine signs and wonders, not just tricks (Revelation 16:13-14; Revelation 19:20; Matthew 24:4-5; Matthew 24:11; Matthew 24:24-25; 2 Thessalonians 2:9). [Note: See Gregory H. Harris, "Satan’s Deceptive Miracles in the Tribulation," Bibliotheca Sacra 156:623 (July-September 1999):308-24.] Like Elijah and the two witnesses, he will even be able to call down fire from heaven. John himself had at one time wanted to call down fire from heaven on some Samaritans (Luke 9:54).

Verse 14

This power will make many earth-dwellers erroneously conclude that his authority is supreme. He will be able to produce some type of convincing likeness of Antichrist (cf. Revelation 13:15; Revelation 14:9; Revelation 14:11; Revelation 15:2; Revelation 16:2; Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:4), perhaps a statue (cf. Daniel 3:4-6) or even an android (cf. Revelation 13:15). The false prophet will be the beast’s "Minister of Propaganda." [Note: Bruce, p. 653.] The description of the first beast as having been fatally wounded by the sword and then having come back to life apparently refers to his resuscitation (cf. Revelation 13:12).

Verse 15

This verse may mean that the second beast will give life (Gr. pneuma, breath) to an inanimate object or that he will only appear to do so. In either case he will deceive many people (Revelation 13:14).

"Belief in statues which spoke and performed miracles is widely attested in ancient literature." [Note: Mounce, p. 261. Cf. Charles, 1:361, and Beale, p. 711, for additional sources.]

The image will speak and will put to death those who do not worship the beast (cf. Daniel 3:11), possibly by issuing commands for executions. Evidently these events will all take place in Jerusalem and probably in the temple that will stand there at this time (cf. Revelation 11:1-2; 2 Thessalonians 2:4). We should not conclude that every last believer will die at this time (i.e., during the Great Tribulation; cf. Revelation 12:13-16; Revelation 13:17-18; Matthew 25:31-46).

Verse 16

The second beast also implements the marking of beast-worshippers. We should probably interpret "all" to mean all classes rather than all individuals since John mentioned six classes of people: social, economic, and cultural. However taken together these three groups comprise the entire population. This marking corresponds among unbelievers to the sealing of God’s servants in chapter 7. It probably will begin early in the Great Tribulation shortly after the sealing of the 144,000. [Note: Thomas, Revelation 8-22, p. 180.] Those who receive this mark will do so willingly. [Note: Düsterdieck, p. 381.]

"The choice of right hand or forehead is presumably for conspicuousness. It could not be hidden. It may also be meant as a travesty of the Jewish custom of wearing phylacteries (little boxes containing extracts from the Bible) on the left hand (or forearm) and on the head." [Note: Morris, pp. 172-73.]

The mark of the beast is evidently a brand-like mark, similar to a tattoo, that will identify beast-worshippers and will enable them to buy and sell. Beale viewed it as "figurative of the ways in which the state keeps check on whether people submit to compulsory idol worship." [Note: Beale, p. 715.] It probably connects with ancient customs. Domestic slave owners sometimes branded their slaves with their mark. [Note: Plutarch, Pericles, 26; Herodotus, 7.233.] Those bearing the mark of the beast show by their mark that they are his followers. Sometimes Roman soldiers branded themselves with the mark of their general if they were particularly fond of him. [Note: Lucian, De Syria Dea, 59; Herodotus, 2.113.] Those devoted to the beast will take his mark. The same Greek word translated "mark" (charagma) also described the seal attached to legal documents that bore the name of the emperor and the date. A less literal view understands the mark as "John’s way of symbolically describing authentic ownership and loyalty." [Note: Johnson, p. 532.]

Verse 17

Many believers will not take the mark of the beast (cf. Revelation 7:3; Revelation 14:1; Revelation 14:9-11). Perhaps they will be able to survive by pooling their resources, by obtaining the necessities of life in clandestine ways (cf. Revelation 12:16), and through God’s supernatural provisions. Those earth-dwellers who worship the beast will accept his law and authority. Coins bore the image of the head and the inscription of the emperor. Those who bear the mark of the beast demonstrate by this that they belong to him. When a person burned a pinch of incense to worship Caesar, he received a certificate verifying that he had done so. This preserved him from death by persecution and enabled him to buy and sell. [Note: Barclay, The Revelation . . ., 2:129-30.] The mark of the beast appears to be such a certificate of worship that a person may only obtain by affirming his or her veneration of Antichrist.

The interchangeability of the beast’s name and the number of his name evidently indicates that the name, written in letters, has a numerical equivalent (Revelation 13:18). [Note: Charles, 1:364; Robertson, 6:406.]

Verse 18

John indicated that it would take wisdom (Gr. sophia) to figure out the number of the beast (cf. Revelation 17:9). This wisdom is the understanding and skill necessary to solve the problem (cf. Daniel 9:22; Daniel 12:10). By identifying the beast’s number believers in the Tribulation will be able to recognize him for who he is. Calculating or counting (Gr. psephisato) is the key to the puzzle.

The number 666 has, of course, been the subject of much study by interpreters.

"Most students work from the fact that in the ancient world (where men lacked our convenient Arabic numerals) it was usual to employ letters to denote numbers. In Greek the first nine letters of the alphabet were used for the units, the next for the tens, and so on. The problem then is to find a name which gives a total of 666 when the numbers signified by its letters are added together." [Note: Morris, pp. 173-74. Cf. Smith, A Revelation . . ., pp. 206-7.]

Some people identified Nero and Hitler as the beast by this method, called gematria. [Note: See Barclay, The Revelation . . ., 2:131-33, for how they did it.]

"The sheer disagreement and confusion created through the years by the gematria method should have long ago warned the church that it was on the wrong track." [Note: Johnson, p. 534.]

On the other hand, this disagreement and confusion may be due in part to the fact that the meaning of this number may not be evident until the Antichrist appears. [Note: Thomas, Revelation 8-22, pp. 182-85.]

"As to the man whom the number ’Six hundred and sixty and six’ represents, God will give full ’understanding’ when it is needed, in those three and half [sic] years of horror and danger." [Note: Newell, p. 205.]

Another approach takes the numbers 666 as Scripture uses them symbolically elsewhere. [Note: Walvoord, The Revelation . . ., p. 210; Ladd, p. 187.] The number seven frequently occurs in Scripture. The Israelites understood seven to represent a completed work of God (e.g., the seven days of creation, etc.). The number three often stands for the fullness of something (e.g., the Trinity, etc.). Consequently 777 would indicate something authenticated as divine. However "666" would appear as a deficient counterfeit to a believer who knows the significance of these numbers. This is especially true since the number six often connects with human rather than divine activities in Scripture (e.g., man works six days a week, etc.). Revelation 13:18 says 666 is the number of "man." The article "a" is absent in the Greek text, and though the reader may supply it legitimately here, it seems best not to do so.

I think that neither the identity of the Antichrist nor the number of his name will be evident until he appears and fulfills prophecy. Then wise believers will be able to calculate his number as well as identify his person. Until then both aspects of Antichrist’s identity will remain a mystery. [Note: See Stephen J. Nichols, "Prophecy Makes Strange Bedfellows: On the History of Identifying the Antichrist," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 44:1 (March 2001):75-85.]

"I would suggest that we not waste our time trying to identify a person by this number. Instead, we need to present Jesus Christ that we might reduce the population of those who have to go through the Great Tribulation Period and who will therefore know what the number of the Beast is." [Note: McGee, 5:1005. Cf. Philippians 3:10.]

The dragon and the two beasts mentioned in chapters 12 and 13 are a counterfeit of the divine Trinity. [Note: See Vern Poythress, "Counterfeiting in the Book of Revelation as a Perspective on Non-Christian Culture," Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 40:3 (September 1997):411-18.] The dragon seeks worship that belongs only to God. The first beast seeks to rule the world, which is Jesus Christ’s prerogative. The second beast glorifies the first beast, which is a counterfeit of the Holy Spirit’s ministry of glorifying Christ. [Note: See Pentecost, Thy Kingdom . . ., pp. 302-9, for further helpful discussion of the beast and the false prophet.]

Chapters 12 and 13 paint a picture of the Great Tribulation in which there is finally one government, one religion, and one economic system for the whole world. This will be a time of great persecution and martyrdom for believers. Rather than getting better and better, as postmillennialists believe, the world will get worse before Jesus Christ’s second coming. As we see world events shaping up for this scenario, we should allow them to motivate us to redeem the time before the Rapture or death terminates our ministries here. On the other hand, we should also rejoice that our Savior’s second coming is drawing near (Matthew 6:10).

Bibliographical Information
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Revelation 13". "Dr. Constable's Expository Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/dcc/revelation-13.html. 2012.
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