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The Beast From the Sea Part 3: The Antichrist

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By David Sheldon

Last Updated: July 09, 2023

The Beast from the Sea found in Revelation 13:1-10 is one of three main players in the final one-world system at the end of the age – along with the Beast from the Earth and the Great Harlot.

The Beast from the Sea itself has many facets. They can be read about in the first two parts:

    1. The Beast From the Sea Part 1: Seven Heads
    2. The Beast From the Sea Part 2: Ten Horns

Those will give background for this third part which focuses on the Beast from the Sea’s leader, the Antichrist. (Also see When/Where Will the Antichrist First Be Seen?)

Antichrist’s Authority

There were six great enemy kingdoms in the Bible that persecuted Israel – Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome (see Part 1). God allowed this by giving Satan seasons of great authority and power – for God’s own underlying purposes. The Antichrist, as part of the seventh and final kingdom, is no different. He will be energized by Satan (the dragon) with absolute authority, power, and allegiance. This is seen in Revelation 13:1-8.

“And the dragon stood on the sand of the seashore.
Then I saw a beast coming up out of the sea, having ten horns and seven heads, and on his horns were ten crowns, and on his heads were blasphemous names. 2 And the beast that I saw was like a leopard, and his feet were like those of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. And the dragon gave him his power and his throne, and great authority. 3 I saw one of his heads as if it had been fatally wounded, and his fatal wound was healed. And the whole earth was amazed and followed after the beast; 4 they worshiped the dragon because he gave his authority to the beast; and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who is able to wage war with him?” 5 A mouth was given to him speaking arrogant words and blasphemies, and authority to act for forty-two months was given to him. 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemies against God, to blaspheme His name and His tabernacle, that is, those who dwell in heaven. 7 It was also given to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them, and authority was given to him over every tribe, people, language, and nation. 8 All who live on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written since the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slaughtered.” Revelation 13:1-8 NASB

The Antichrist will have the authority to act and speak in an arrogant way (vs 5-6), to persecute the saints (vs 7), and to reign over the nations (vs 7). Though the Antichrist will be tyrannical, he will appear glorious and awe-inspiring to the world (vs 8).

The Antichrist’s authority will be temporary, however. The final kingdom and its vestige of those previous kingdoms will be destroyed (Daniel 2:44-45). This will happen at the Second Coming of Jesus Christ – the Son of Man and the Stone (as described in Daniel).

 

A Horn, King, and Beast (Head)

Scripture uses several terms to refer to the Antichrist because of his multifaceted character and exploits. Each one gives a slightly different perspective. He is called a horn, a king, and a beast (head).

The Antichrist is a “little horn” in Daniel 7:7-8.

7 After this I kept looking in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and extremely strong; and it had large iron teeth. It devoured and crushed, and trampled down the remainder with its feet; and it was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. 8 While I was thinking about the horns, behold, another horn, a little one, came up among them, and three of the previous horns were plucked out before it; and behold, this horn possessed eyes like human eyes, and a mouth uttering great boasts. Daniel 7:7-8

Horns indicate authority and power, and this is no exception. This little horn, the Antichrist, rises up among the ten horns/kings of a “revived Roman Empire.”

In Daniel 7:24-25, the Antichrist is a “king.”

“As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings will arise; and another will arise after them, and he will be different from the previous ones and will humble three kings. 25 And he will speak against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be handed over to him for a time, times, and half a time.” Daniel 7:24-25

The Antichrist will arise as the final king (ruler) in the midst of ten other kings. He will be powerful like a king and yet greater than these other ten. He will have the authority to persecute the saints until their vindication by God.

And in Revelation 13:3, the Antichrist is referred to as a “beast” (head).

“I saw one of his heads as if it had been fatally wounded, and his fatal wound was healed. And the whole earth was amazed and followed after the beast;” Revelation 13:3

He is called a beast because he is in line with all of the other kings/kingdoms referred to as beasts that persecuted Israel (see Daniel 7). This beast also has a representative “head” (leader) and evidently only one – the Antichrist.

A note about the fatal wound that is healed: Biblical commentators have interpreted this in various ways over the years. But it’s usually viewed in two main ways. It is either referring to a revived kingdom or revived person (who is the head of the final kingdom). There is already biblical justification for a revived kingdom coming forth out of the fourth beast of Daniel as a final beast. But if it is a person, it seems that what normally would have been a physical death blow – was not – but rather healed. And, whether this is really an accident or a staged event remains to be seen. But what this beast does following the death blow seems to be quite associated with an actual person. Either way, the people of the earth are enamored with what they see and follow after and worship the beast (the Antichrist).

We get to the specifics of this head/beast, the actual person, in Revelation 17:11-13, 16.

The beast which was, and is not, is himself also an eighth and is one of the seven, and he goes to destruction. 12 The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but they receive authority as kings with the beast for one hour. 13 These have one purpose, and they give their power and authority to the beast…16 And the ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the prostitute and will make her desolate and naked, and will eat her flesh and will burn her up with fire. Revelation 17:11-13, 16

It says that “he was and is not” and is an “eighth” but is also one of the seven. This might refer to the Antichrist’s being “revived from a mortal wound,” or it might be a way of emphasizing his unique position. Or, it might be referring to the reality that the ten kings will become seven and the little horn is the eighth in the midst of them at that time. (Daniel 7:8,20, 24)

The Beast from the Sea Part 3: The Antichrist

A Type of the Antichrist

We should not be surprised by the Antichrist’s tactics. Looking back in history we see Antiochus IV Epiphanes who persecuted the Jews as well. He reigned over the Seleucid Kingdom from 175-164 b.c. He was prophesied about in Daniel 8:9-19 and called a “small horn” who would persecute the people of God (vs 10) and magnify himself (vs 11). He would trample the sanctuary and remove the offering (vs 11-12). [167 b.c.] [Read more from a Jewish perspective in 1 Maccabees 1:10-64] [For further reading see New World Encyclopedia: Antiochus IV Epiphanes]

Daniel is told in 8:17 “understand that the vision concerns the time of the end.” Therefore, “small horn” must somehow be a type or historic example of the final little horn – the Antichrist. What Antiochus did to the people of God, the city of Jerusalem, and the sacrifices ordained by God, foreshadows what the Antichrist will also do when he rises to power. The future will show that these prophecies of the Antichrist will come true just as we have seen the specifics of Antiochus come true in history. (See also Daniel 11:25-35)

The actions of the Antichrist can also be seen in Daniel 11:36-45. These texts of Scripture have had no fulfillment in history – so they must be referring to this future Antichrist. This section tells us that he will do as he pleases and exalt himself above all gods.

Making Sense of it All

The spirit of antichrist has been at work over the centuries and is currently at work. The final object of its worship will be revealed in the one man, Antichrist. So let me ask a very important question: where is the spirit of antichrist most at work?

Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us. But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you all know. I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it, and because no lie is of the truth. Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. 1 John 2:18-22 (NASB)

This tells us that many antichrists have originated within the visible church. (See also What Does “Test the Spirits” Mean?) Will not the same be true of the final Antichrist?

“Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, 4 who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God.” 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 NASB

Paul says “he takes his seat in the temple of God, displaying himself as being God.” The Antichrist will be seen in the visible church by saints – as he leads the apostasy of the visible church that has fallen away. (See Will Christians Know Who the Antichrist Will Be?)

The Antichrist will not only be busy inside the visible church, but he will also be the head of the ten-horned kingdom that rules the entire world economically, supported in his pursuits by the False Prophet (See The Beast From the Earth Part 1: The False Prophet), and carrying the Great Harlot for a time (See The Great Harlot)

So the Antichrist will arise as the head of the Beast from the Sea. He will become the centerpiece of the world’s worship and submission. He is able to achieve this with the help of his “Chief Propagandist and Implementation Officer,” the False Prophet, who supports him through the mark of the beast and the signs he performs. But eventually, the Antichrist’s hatred of the true God will become evident and manifest itself against the Jewish people and the rest of her seed/believers (Revelation 12:17) during the 70th week of Daniel (see What Are the Seventy Weeks of Daniel?). After all, he is called the man of lawlessness in 2 Thessalonians 2:3. But in the midst of his hatred of God and God’s people comes an encouraging prophecy:

“I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn.” Zechariah 12:10 NASB

This is believed to be a Messianic prophecy regarding Jesus and the Jewish remnant yet to be fulfilled.

Things will move downhill very quickly for the Antichrist as God begins to pour forth His wrath. This is prepping both the Antichrist and the False Prophet for their place in the lake of fire (Revelation 19:20) as the end of this present evil age comes to a close at the Second Coming of Jesus Christ!

During the time when these prophecies are coming true, the saints of God must remember that God is sovereign, all-powerful, and does not forsake His own. He knows ahead of time what will happen, and these things won’t come like a thief in the night for true saints.

But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness, so that the day would overtake you like a thief; 1 Thessalonians 5:4

Therefore, saints should take courage when told:

“Here is the perseverance of the saints who keep the commandments of God and their faith in Jesus.” Revelation 14:12 NASB

The Beast from the Earth Part 2: The Image and Mark

The Beast from the Earth in Revelation 13 is one of three main players in the global system at the end of this age, along with the Beast from the Sea and the Great Harlot.

The Beast From the Earth Part 1: The False Prophet

The Beast from the Earth is a prominent player in the final world system. There are several facets to it including a leader (The False Prophet), mark, & image.

Who are the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse?

We must correctly understand the four horsemen of the apocalypse in order to properly understand the rest of Revelation. Who are they and what is their mission?

Is Revelation in Chronological Order?

Revelation is more of a montage. Some of the chapters are in chronological order, but many overlap each other. Our charts give a visual explanation of this.

When and Where Will the Antichrist First be Seen?

2 Thessalonians 2:3 states specifically that the man of lawlessness, the Antichrist, will be revealed in the end times. Scripture tells us the circumstances.

Who are the Two Witnesses in Revelation 11?

The two witnesses of Revelation 11 proclaim a message of repentance and judgment for a period of 1,260 days during the first half of the end-time tribulation.

What are the Trumpets and Bowls of Revelation?

The trumpets and bowls found in Revelation are specific events of God’s judgments that will take place at the end of the age. They are very similar to each other.

Is the Rapture of the Church Found in Revelation 4?

Some believe John’s experience in Revelation 4:1-2 is representative of the rapture of the church before the seven year tribulation period. Is this the case?

When was Revelation Written?

It was towards the end of Domitian’s reign that John received the vision. We could surmise about 91-96 A.D. And he wrote Revelation while he was still on the island of Patmos.

Babylon in Revelation

The book of Revelation uses the term Babylon 6 times in 4 different contexts. Each use is pertinent in understanding the course of end-time events.

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