Friday, November 6, 2009

Rev. 13:1-3 / Rev. 17: 8-12

Chapter 13

The last chapter left off at the point of the beginning of the great tribulation when antichrist or the beast will declare himself God. This chapter is going to tell all about him and from where he comes. It is impossible to really cover this without referring to parts of chapter 17, so it will be necessary to include that part of the chapter alongside this one. The first few verses contain much information, so covering them will take more than just one post.

Verse 1-3 "And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority. And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast."

Chapter 17 gives the interpretation for much of this symbolism.

Rev. 17:8-12 "The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is. And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space. And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition. And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast."

Beginning with the part about the beast rising from the sea, we can also see that in chapter 17 it says that he comes out of the bottomless pit and goes to his damnation. This qualifier determines that the beast is an individual, specifically it would seem an evil spirit, not just a system or kingdom, although the beast is also a kingdom. If taken symbolically, the sea usually refers to a sea of people. Since we are given further specifications that he comes from the bottomless pit, it can be seen that maybe this is to be taken literally. We know that the abyss was opened to let out a horde of fallen angels and the smoke rose out of the bottomless pit, because it is in the center of the earth. Apparently the door was opened previous to that event (antichrist starts reigning at the midpoint before the hordes are let out of hell) to allow this one demon or fallen angel out of it to inhabit the antichrist's body (assuming antichrist is a possessed human and not just a demonic or fallen angel spirit manifesting in human form.) That corridor may very well come up in the middle of the sea or ocean, given how much of the earth is covered by water. This may explain the Bermuda and Devil's Triangles. They may be corridors to hell. I personally heard the testimony of a man, a doctor who had been a non-believer, who had a near death experience. He was dying of a terminal illness and when the time of his death came, he saw demons come out of hell to drag him there. At the last moment as they were grabbing him, he cried out to Jesus to save him, and the demons retreated. The doctor was miraculously healed of his terminal illness and went on to be a Christian who told his story to everyone. I know of Christians, who were able to speak coherently at the time of their death, who said that they saw angels coming to escort them to heaven, just before they went to be with the Lord. It would make sense. It also makes sense that demons would gladly haul people, who do not love the Lord, off to hell. Since hell is a very real physical place in the center of the earth, it makes sense that there is a corridor or two in which these demons or fallen angels come and go, ferrying the souls of the dead to hell.

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