What is the image of the beast?

There are two beasts described in John's vision in Revelation 13. The first beast represents the Antichrist and a group of nations and leaders who will fight against God and His followers. It is a leopard-like creature with seven heads and ten horns and has been given authority from the dragon, who is Satan. The second beast represents the False Prophet who will deceive people into worshipping the first beast. It is a lamb-like creature with two horns and the mouth of a dragon. It also has authority from Satan.

One of the second beast's roles is to deceive the people into creating an image of the first beast: "…it deceives those who dwell on earth, telling them to make an image for the beast that was wounded by the sword and yet lived. And it was allowed to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast might even speak and might cause those who would not worship the image of the beast to be slain" (Revelation 13:14–15). The False Prophet will give the image of the first beast breath so that it can enforce mandatory worship. The people will be forced to worship the image of the first beast and receive its mark on their foreheads or hands in order to buy or sell goods. Those who do not worship the image of the first beast will be killed.

Previously scholars thought this image of the beast would be something akin to a statue that had a lifelike appearance. With current technological advances others have proposed that it could be a hologram, an android, or even a human clone. Regardless of the exact nature of this image, it will be a focal point for worship of the Antichrist. Some biblical scholars believe it may be the abomination of desolation described in Matthew 24:15 and Daniel 9:27, the idea being that the image will be set up in the rebuilt Jewish temple.

John warns people that whoever worships the image of the beast will be judged with God's wrath and condemned to eternal suffering. An angel in John's vision delivers this message: "If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand, he also will drink the wine of God's wrath, poured full strength into the cup of his anger, and he will be tormented with fire and sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb" (Revelation 14:9–10). The beasts will only have authority on earth for three and a half years. At the end of their reign they will be destroyed by Jesus and He will reign over the earth (Revelation 19:11—21:8. Those who chose to worship God instead of the image of the beast will rule with Jesus and spend eternity with Him in heaven (Revelation 15:2–3).

Related Truth:

Who is the beast of Revelation?

Who is the end-times false prophet?

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

What is the Antichrist?

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

Return to:
Truth about the End Times

Subscribe to the CompellingTruth.org Newsletter:

Preferred Bible Version:

CompellingTruth.org is part of Got Questions Ministries

For answers to your Bible questions, please visit