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Holman Bible Dictionary
Apocalyptic literature such as Daniel and Revelation utilize beasts of various sorts in their symbolism (see Psalm 74:19; Jeremiah 12:9 ). Daniel saw four great beasts who represented four great kings arise out of the sea (Daniel 7:2-14 ). These four beasts would ncthreaten God's kingdom, but God's people would prevail over them (Daniel 7:18 ).
The Book of Revelation speaks of two beasts. The first beast arises out of the sea (Revelation 13:1 ), is seven headed, and derives its authority from the dragon (Revelation 12:3; Revelation 13:4 ). This beast has several of the characteristics of the four beasts of Daniel 7:1 . The second beast arises out of the earth (Revelation 13:11 ). It serves the first beast by seeking devotees for it and is referred to as the “false prophet” (Revelation 16:13; Revelation 19:20; Revelation 20:10 ). Both the beast and the false prophet persecute the church but are finally judged by Christ (Revelation 19:20; see 2 Thessalonians 2:6-12 ). See Behemoth; Leviathan .
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Beast'. Holman Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/hbd/b/beast.html. 1991.