Who is the beast of Revelation?

In Revelation chapter 13 John gives an account of a terrifying vision he has of two beasts and a dragon. The creatures in John's vision are symbolic representations of key figures in the end-times timeline. The first beast is a group of nations and leaders who will rise up against Jesus during the end times. In addition, it also is the leader of this group who is known as the Antichrist. The second beast is the False Prophet who will deceive people into following the Antichrist and worshipping the image of the beast. The dragon is Satan and he will empower both beasts so that they can take over the world and wage war against Christians and Israel.

John writes, "And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns and seven heads, with ten diadems on its horns and blasphemous names on its head. And the beast that I saw was like a leopard; its feet were like a bear's, and its mouth was like a lion's mouth. And to it the dragon gave his power and his throne and great authority" (Revelation 13:1–2). The first beast John sees is very similar to the beast Daniel saw in a dream (Daniel 7). Both beasts depict a strong authoritative force that will conquer the nations of the world and oppress those who follow Christ. The two accounts also agree that the beast will have complete power on earth for forty-two months or three and a half years. Revelation 13 states that the beast will be mortally wounded, but then will be healed. This will cause many people to worship the beast. In addition, the beast will speak blasphemous things against God and attack God's people.

John goes on to write, "Then I saw another beast rising out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon" (Revelation 13:11). The second beast, often referred to as the False Prophet, will also have great authority. This beast will perform miracles and deceive the people of the earth. It will convince them to make an image of the first beast and give the image breath to speak and act. The people will be forced to worship the image of the first beast and put a mark of the beast on their hand or forehead in order to buy and sell things. Those who do not worship the image of the first beast will be put to death.

Although the beasts will have great authority, their power will be short lived. God will allow them to rule for forty-two months. At the end of those months Jesus will return and Satan will wage war against Him. The beasts will be cast into the lake of fire (Revelation 19:11–21) and Satan will be bound in the bottomless pit (Revelation 20:1–3). Jesus will then establish His millennial kingdom on earth. After the thousand years Satan will be released but then defeated and cast into the lake of fire where the two beasts of Revelation13 are, and they will be tormented forever (Revelation 20:7–10).

Related Truth:

Is there an end times unholy trinity? Who is part of the unholy trinity?

What is the Antichrist?

Who is the end-times false prophet?

The mark of the beast (666) - What is it?

The whore of Babylon / mystery Babylon – Who or what is this?

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