Introduction: Today in the United States, we have all these silly
warnings about obvious dangers. These warnings are the unfortunate
result of the work of lawyers. As you all know, I’m a lawyer and law
professor, so let me give you a warning about something that you
probably already know. The studies today and last week are based on
my reading of the Bible. Many Bible scholars disagree with me. I
readily admit their superior training in all areas except logic.
With that warning, let’s dive into our study of Revelation 13!

  1. The Dragon and the Ten Horn Beast

    1. Read Revelation 13:1. Who did we decide last week is the
      Red Dragon? ( Revelation 12:9 explains that it is Satan.
      The rest of that chapter explains how Satan and his angels
      are in a war against the followers of Jesus.)

      1. As the Red Dragon is standing on the shore, what
        comes out of the sea? (A “beast” with ten horns,
        seven heads, and ten crowns.)

      2. Is this Ten Horn beast a friend of God? (No. Each
        head had a “blasphemous name” on it. Its seven heads
        and ten horns make it resemble the Red Dragon.
        Revelation 12:3.)

      3. What does it mean to come out of the “sea?” (Read
        Revelation 17:15. This tells us the water represents
        a populated area.)

    2. Read Revelation 13:2. What else does the Ten Horn
      resemble? (The beasts coming out of the sea that Daniel
      saw in Daniel 7:2-6.)

      1. What does this suggest to us? (The beasts of Daniel 7
        represent the history of the world starting with
        Babylon. Thus, the Ten Horn of Revelation 13 bears
        some resemblance to these prior world powers.)

      2. What does Satan give the Ten Horn beast? (Power, his
        throne and “great authority.” Ten Horn is an agent of

    3. Read Daniel 7:7. How many horns does this beast have?

      1. Do we know the identity of this beast? (If this was a
        prophesy about the future (which is now history),
        then this fourth beast, Ten Horn, is the Roman

    4. Read Daniel 7:8, Daniel 7:11, and Revelation 13:3-6. What
      do you find that is similar between these two accounts?
      (Both Ten Horns speak things that are proud and contrary
      to God. Because of the references to worship and talking,
      this describes a power that is at least, in part,
      religious and opposed to Jesus. Both suffer a fatal wound,
      and Revelation 13:3 indicates that at least part of this
      Ten Horn is healed of that wound.)

    5. Read Revelation 13:7-8. What other nasty thing does this
      Ten Horn do? (It not only makes war against the saints, it
      conquers them and demands worship from them.)

    6. What is the Ten Horn that receives worship and persecutes
      the saints? Are the Ten Horn beasts of Daniel 7 and
      Revelation 13 the same? (Old Protestant commentaries
      (which are the ones I most consult) identify the Ten Horn
      of Revelation 13 as pagan and Papal Rome. I think there is
      great agreement that the Ten Horn of Daniel 7 is the Roman
      Empire. The time line works. The commentaries describe the
      persecution of Christians by both pagan and Papal Rome.
      Obviously, Catholics do not agree with the “Papal”
      identification, but I think the points of comparison are
      extremely compelling.)

      1. Look again at Revelation 13:8. Is this in the future?
        (It must be. That means this beast will be around
        until the end, which excludes the interpretation this
        beast is only the Roman Empire.)

  2. The Earth Beast

    1. Read Revelation 13:11-12. What does this second (Earth
      Beast) do for the Ten Horn? (It causes the inhabitants of
      the world to worship the Ten Horn.)

    2. What does it mean for this beast to arise out of the
      earth? (If water means people, then this would mean a
      sparsely populated area.)

    3. What is this Earth Beast? (Some of the old Protestant
      commentaries view this Earth Beast as Papal Rome, and my
      church teaches that it is the United States. There are
      various other theories about the Earth Beast.)

      1. Let’s look at the logical problem with both of the
        U.S. and Papal views.

        1. If the Earth Beast is Papal Rome, did it
          promote worship of the Roman Empire? (I’m no
          serious historian, but that seems inconsistent
          with history.)

        2. If the Earth Beast is the United States, does
          it promote worship of Papal Rome? Does it
          promote worship of the Catholic Church? (This
          is history about which I have no doubt. The
          U.S. has been exceedingly anti-Catholic.
          President John Kennedy was a Catholic, and that
          was a serious problem in his election campaign.
          Currently, the press and the movie industry are
          extremely anti-Catholic. Some of that
          criticism is justified based on recent
          scandals, and some comes from pagan anger at
          the stand of the Catholic Church against
          abortion and homosexuality.)

    4. Read Revelation 13:13-15. What else does this Earth Beast

    5. Re-read Revelation 13:11. What other world power has
      promoted worship? (Islam.)

      1. Did Islam “come out of the earth?” (Yes, it arose out
        of a sparsely settled area.)

      2. Does Islam have “two horns?” (It has two major
        divisions: Sunni and Shia. Islam also has two major
        teachings: there is no god but God; and Muhammad is
        the messenger of God.)

    6. Read Revelation 16:13, Revelation 19:20, and Revelation
      20:10. What other name is the second beast, the Earth
      Beast, given? (The “false prophet.”)

      1. What does the term “false prophet” suggest about the
        identify of the Earth Beast?

      2. Let me ask the same question I did about Papal Rome
        and the United States. Has Islam ever promoted Pagan
        Rome or Papal Rome? (No! They have historically been

    7. If we look at history, Papal Rome, the U.S. and Islam fail
      to fit the description of the Earth Beast. What if we look
      to the future? Read 2 Thessalonians 2:1-10 and compare
      Revelation 13:13. Do you think these two verses describe
      the same event?

      1. If they do describe the same event, has that taken
        place? (Based on this text, Christians believe that
        Satan will stage a false second coming of Jesus. What
        most Christians don’t know is that many Muslims
        believe that the Mahdi, who is also called the
        redeemer, will come and rule on the earth for a
        period of time before the “Day of Resurrection.”
        They believe that the Mahdi will be accompanied by

    8. Now look at the Earth Beast with this understanding of the
      future held by both Christians and Muslims. Does this now
      satisfy the various views of the Earth beast? Could the
      Earth Beast be the combined power of the United States,
      Islam and Catholicism when the counterfeit second coming
      takes place? (I have Catholic friends who jokingly say,
      “Catholics don’t read the Bible.” What I think is that all
      Christians (including Catholics) who do not read their
      Bibles will believe what they see – that Jesus has come.
      Muslims will accept this as the anticipated Mahdi. This
      Satanic counterfeit of the Second Coming of Jesus will
      bring together all humans who are not students of the

    9. Read 2 Thessalonians 2:11-12. How powerful will be this

  3. The Mark

    1. Read Revelation 13:16-18. We have previously discussed the
      idea that a “hand” or “forehead” mark means that either
      the person was forced or was convinced to take the mark.
      What is the result of a refusal to engage in this false
      worship? (Death or economic disaster.)

      1. When you think about the potential role of the United
        States in this terrible time, does this seem
        reasonable? (Consider that the U.S. is the leader in
        the technology that could make this possible.
        Currently, the U.S. monitors large cash transactions.
        Very few employers in the United States pay employees
        in cash. I rarely buy anything with cash. The
        technology is so sophisticated, that before the
        merchant hands my credit card back, my watch tells me
        that my account has been charged!)

      2. Read Revelation 14:6-7. What is the alternative call
        to worship? (True worship is of our Creator God.)

        1. What theological controversies are connected to
          the Creation account? (Creation, the Seventh-day Sabbath, heterosexual marriage, the
          relationship between humans and animals. You
          can see the battle lines forming now!)

    2. Friend, the stakes are high. Will you commit to being a
      serious student of the Bible so that you will not be

  4. Next week: God’s Everlasting Gospel.