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The Miracle Deception
God loves humanity with an everlasting and unending Love. While sin had separated us from experiencing a relationship with God as He intended from the very beginning, He gave His precious Son Jesus Christ the ultimate sacrifice that we may be reconciled back to Him. And as if that was not enough, He made it possible for us to experience His presence in our lives every day by giving us His Holy Spirit. God has given so much of Himself to show us that His Love for us is so pure and so unconditional that it knows no end. His Love is revealed in His pursues of our hearts; it is also seen in His solemn warnings. He loves us so much that He doesn’t want us to be deceived and lose out dwelling with Him for all eternity.
One of the solemn warnings God gives to us is found in Revelation 13, where John sees the two beasts. This will be a very crucial test in the time of tribulation that will reveal whom our true worship belongs to as humanity. It will also provide yet another opportunity to either choose to obey God or obey the devil.
Everyone has a choice; that’s one of the ways God shows us He loves us because true Love provides free will and never forces itself on another.
As we get into Revelations 13, I just want to remind you that the Bible has stood the test of time, and it remains relevant in today’s complex world.
The book of Revelation seeks to reveal the plans of God and the works of the devil to try and thwart God’s plans but ultimately failing terribly.
However, the devil manages to deceive a lot of people who will, unfortunately, end up perishing with him. That’s why these warnings were written so that God can speak to your heart and my heart to remain faithful to Him to the very end. This is all because He loves us so much and desires no one to perish with the devil.
He desires that all men will be saved and come to the knowledge of Truth. (2 Timothy 2:4)
THE FIRST BEAST
This is what John saw, “Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name.
Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority.” ~Revelation 13:1-2
It’s important to start by noting that God shows John a beast, revealing it for what it really is. But to the people of the earth, it may not necessarily be an actual beast. A beast speaks of something tremendously evil, and in God’s clear view and vision, it is a beast. John describes it as having seven heads and ten horns and on his horns ten crowns. Throughout scripture, a horn always represents strength or power.
Take Note: In the book of Daniel, a horn is a leader, president, or King, someone in charge of a territory.
We can, therefore, see that this beast has ten powers that are royal in nature because of the crowns we see on the ten horns. This also talks of leadership. On the seven heads, John sees a blasphemous name, which shows us that this beast is contrary to the things of God.
Take Note: There will be 10 Kings in charge of ten tracks of land, and one of the Ten Kings will be the 7th King that replaces the 6th King. It is the 6th King in the North Kingdom that starts the Mark of the Beast system, and it is the 7th king who is the raiser of taxes. The good news is The Mark of the beast system comes to an end. Then we have the 7th king and, by the way, only will live for a few days.
Then shall stand up in his estate a raiser of taxes in the glory of the kingdom: but within few days he shall be destroyed, neither in anger nor in battle. Dan 11:20
Take Note: The 7th King is the King that is killed and comes back to Life after its deadly wound. He becomes the 8th king after he is killed, which is the King that does battle against Jesus Christ when he returns as King of Kings at the end of Armageddon.
To blaspheme means to speak untrue and vicious lies about God, His Kingdom, and His people. In verse 6, we see that this beast opens his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name and those who dwell in heaven. We can all make the observation that this beast is evil, represents ten powers, and it’s entirely contrary to the word of God. Some see this beast, not as a person but a kingdom, as a federation of ten Nations that will rise to power during the tribulation period. However, other people see this beast as a symbol of a man and, more specifically, the antichrist. The difference in interpretations comes from the fact that some of the things that are said of the beast refer to a kingdom while some things refer to a man. I tend to believe that both are right.
Daniel also writes of this particular beast in chapter 7:23-24, “The fourth beast shall be a fourth kingdom on earth which shall be different from other kingdoms and shall devour the whole earth, tremble it and break it in pieces. The ten horns are ten kings who shall arise from this kingdom. And another shall rise after them; he shall be different from the first ones.” Isn’t it amazing that some things that John saw had already been shown and explained to Daniel? God really wants us to understand these warnings so that we will always stay prepared. I believe that the kingdom references are the fact that during the tribulation, the antichrist will control this federation of nations. What John sees here is the antichrist and his power and his tools to accomplish his mission. We read that this beast rises up from the sea. The sea is a reference symbolically in scripture for the nations of the world. Sometimes, the Old Testament refers to the nations of the world as islands. So we see that this beast will rise from the nations.
And John saw that the beast was given power and great authority by the dragon that we see in Chapter 12, who is the devil.
THE HEALING MIRACLE
Something rather interesting happens to this first beast in Revelation 13, and this is what John saw. “And I saw one of his heads as if it had been mortally wounded, and his deadly wound was healed. And the world marveled and followed the beast. So they worshipped the dragon who gave authority to the beast, and they worshipped the beast saying, “Who is like the beast? Who is able to make war with him?” ~Revelation 13:3-4
John sees a fatal wound on this beast that is healed, and the world marveled and followed the beast. Dear brethren, do not be deceived by counterfeit healing miracles. Many will be deceived to worship the devil himself simply because of a miracle. Our relationship with God is what matters, our relationship with God takes first place, and we don’t love and follow Him just because of His Marvelous mighty works but because of who He is and because He first loved us. So don’t be disillusioned by hunger to see miracles that you abandon your hunger for God.
This has also been linked to Revelation 17:7-8, where the angel said to John, “Why do you marvel? I will tell you the mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her, which has seven heads and ten horns. The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition.
And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the book of Life from the foundations of the world. When they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is”
It is believed that this beast (This is the 7th King in the northern kingdom) had been killed and has been raised back to Life hence why the angel said the beast that was and is not, and yet is.
As Daniel interprets king Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, he talked of the feet and toes, partly of potter’s clay and partly of iron, which showed that the final kingdom would be divided, then the end will come where God will establish His Kingdom which shall never be destroyed. (See Daniel 2:41-45)
Therefore, it is believed that this divided kingdom could mean that there were nations that came against this beast and killed him, but now he had risen again, and his deadly wound healed. Many lost souls will marvel and follow him, worshipping both the beast and the dragon.
WAR AGAINST THE SAINTS
It was granted to him to make war against the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given to him over every tribe, tongue and nation.
All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose name have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundations of the earth” ~Revelation 13:7-8
Take Note: This is believed to be a time after the church will have already been raptured.
The saints mentioned here are those who will have believed in Jesus Christ as Lord, repented of their sins, and devoted their lives to following God after the rapture.
However, it will be a challenging time to be saved, and those saints will face many tribulations. We see that this beast will come against the saints and overcome them. Many will be slaughtered because of their faith in Jesus Christ. There is, therefore, no better time to be born again and living in the ways of God than now. John also sees that those whose names are not written in the Book of Life will worship this beast.
And my simple question to you is, do you have the confidence that your name is written in the Lamb’s Book of Life? Have you repented of your sins and received the saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ? And are you living in His righteous ways and walking in holiness with the Holy Spirit’s help? If not, I am here to encourage you that you can make that decision now. You can ask Jesus to forgive you of your sins and write your name in His Book of Life. You can believe in your heart and confess with your mouth that He died for you, and on the third day, He resurrected and now lives forevermore. You can ask Him to make a home in your heart and help you to turn away from your old ways completely, and He will answer you. If you do that, get to know Him by reading the Bible and talking to Him every day through prayer. He is always ready to reveal Himself to us and to lead us in His will.
THE SECOND BEAST
John sees yet another beast, “Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon. And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound has been healed. ~Revelation 13:11-12
This beast has the appearance of a lamb, but something gives him away; he speaks like a dragon, like the devil. We know from the Bible that the devil is the father of all lies, and this beast speaks deception, just like the dragon even though his appearance is that of a lamb. He appears harmless and maybe the beast’s image, but he speaks the words of the devil. Jesus actually warned us of this when he said, “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.” ~Matthew 7:15
This beast is later referred to as the false prophet whose main goal is to point people to the antichrist. His primary function is to demand that the people of the earth worship the antichrist or the beast that was healed.
THE MIRACLE DECEPTION
Beware of this second beast because he will come with great signs and wonders. John saw that “He performs great signs so that he even makes fire to come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived.
He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would worship the image of the beast Satan killed.” ~Revelation 13:13-15
This beast will be given power from the devil to exercise authority and supernatural power. You may wonder, where does the devil get that kind of power? Well, the devil has that kind of power, but it is counterfeit; it’s not the real deal. In Exodus, when Moses went to Egypt, we read that the magicians were able to counterfeit what Moses was doing. But ultimately, God’s power was proven to be more powerful than that of the devil. It’s important to know that supernatural power is not always from God. Signs and wonders are not always from God. And that’s why it is so important that we focus on developing and nurturing a relationship with God instead of only seeking His miraculous signs; otherwise, we may easily be deceived through counterfeit miracles if that were possible. Paul also writes to the church of Thessalonians to warn them, “The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of satan, with all power, signs and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved” ~Thessalonians 2:9-10
The question I want to pose to you is, do you actually love the Truth? The Word of God says that a time that will come and is now here with us when people will not put up with sound doctrine but instead to suit their own desires, they will gather around themselves a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. (2 Timothy 4:3)
My prayer is that we will be lovers of Truth both in words and in deeds. That we will obey His commandments for that is one of the ways we express our Love and Honor for Him. May we all receive Love for Truth. Let us not be deceived by the lies of the enemy, and we can do this by putting on the full armor of God which is well elaborated in Ephesians 6:10-18:
The Belt of Truth
The Breastplate of Righteousness
Sharing the Gospel of peace
The Shield of Faith
The Helmet of Salvation
The Word of God
Prayer and Intercession
THE MARK OF THE BEAST
John continues to see that, “He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their foreheads and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.”
~Revelation 13:16-17 The second beast uses the pressure of the economy to get people to worship the beast that was healed or the antichrist. People will not be able to buy food or services or anything without the Mark of the beast. There are rumors that have been spreading that maybe the vaccine for the Covid19 virus may be the Mark of the beast and that people will receive the Mark without knowing it in the form of a vaccine. However, that cannot be true because everyone receiving the Mark of the beast will know exactly what it is and will choose to either accept it or reject it and be killed. We don’t have to wait until a time when having a relationship with God will be punished by death. We can start now. We can devote ourselves to studying the word of God and staying connected to Him through daily communication with Him, through obeying His commands and telling others of the hope we have found in Jesus. I also know that the fantastic thing with the internet is that it will be here for a long time and maybe you’re reading this, and you are living in those times, I encourage you to endure to the end, to choose Jesus no matter what the cost because on the other side you will enjoy eternal life where there is no more pain or sorrow or sadness. God loves you, and that is why He has given you another chance. He is with you even now, trust Him and don’t give up.
God Bless You