Revelation: The Beast from the Sea- a World State

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posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 12:36 PM
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I want to offer some thoughts on Revelation ch13 vv1-4.

There are two "Beasts" appearing in this chapter, and this is part of the description of one of them.

I'm going to be asking the question; how, and why, is this Beast dominating the world?

We're told that this Beast comes up out of the sea

So the first thing I need to do is to go down the much-travelled road back down to Daniel ch7, which is the place where Daniel sees four great beasts coming up out of the sea. These are always understood to represent four kingdoms, and we can identify most of them with reasonable certainty.

The "winged lion" is one of the characteristic sculptures of Babylon, and probably represents that empire.

The empire of the Medes and the Persians was politically lop-sided (most of the original power and territory had come from the Medes), and would be well represented by the "lop-sided bear".

Alexander's empire came into existence with legendary speed, and then fell apart into four distinct kingdoms. That makes it a natural match for the third beast, the winged and four-headed leopard.

The point is (without getting into the vexed question of the fourth kingdom) that these are all political powers. The Beast in Revelation, besides having the same origin, borrows physical features from all of them. So it is reasonable to conclude that the Beast is also a political power.

We're told that the Beast has ten horns

The horn is an Old Testament symbol of power, and there's a royal diadem here for each of them. Ch17 v12 identifies them as ten kings "who are to receive authority as kings for one hour, together with the Beast".

The symbolic meaning of number is always important in Revelation.
"10" has been described as the number of completeness of perfection. In my mind, the number "10" is pointing us towards "the full extent of the world". The implication is that the "ten" kings are ruling the world between them, and that the Beast is dominating the world with their assistance.

About that "one hour"; I've drawn attention, elsewhere, to the relationship between this "hour" and the "half-an-hour" specified in ch8 v1, which is the first portion of the "hour". This means that we can locate the "hour" to the period following the great catastrophe of the "Four Horsemen" in ch6. This is an important point of chronology, and I'll be coming back to it in a moment.

The argument is in these two links;
Silence in Heaven
The Four Horsemen

We're told that the Beast has seven heads

We can find two ways of interpreting this in ch17. The four-headed leopard of Daniel's vision authorises us to make use of a third, that the original political power is being subdivided. We can understand them as seven political powers.

The symbolic meaning of number is always important in Revelation.
"7" is the number which points us towards God.
If the Beast has seven heads, then God is involved. How so?

Well, in the first place, as Paul points out; "There is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God...[the ruler] is the servant of God, to execute his wrath on the wrongdoer".(Romans ch13 vv1-4) So the political powers themselves, under normal cicumstances (that is, dealing with criminals), must be seen as acting in the service of God.

This doesn't necessarily cease to be the case even when they're acting directly against God's people. The prophets believed that the Babylonians were unconsciously acting as God's agents in the capture of Jerusalem and the exile of the Jews.

In any case, they must fall under his limitation. Their power and authority, although ostensibly given them by the dragon, is only possible to the extent that God is willing to allow it.

We're told that the seven heads carry a blasphemous name

So the dominating political power thinks it's God? Yes, that rather goes with the territory. There is a reason why absolute monarchies are called "absolute". there is a reason why totalitarian states are called "totalitarian". Political power tends towards making its claim to obedience more and more unconditional, until the point is reached where it encroaches on the claim that belongs to God.

If each of the heads thinks it's God, that might suggest that they're dominating the world one at a time- in other words. that they're coming in succession rather than simultaneously. That thought is supported by the observation that the "haughty and blasphemous words" of v5 are only coming from one mouth.

We're told that one of the heads suffers a mortal wound

The wound is then healed. That's easy enough to understand if the "heads" are being taken to represent political powers. We've experienced the "mortal wound" of a political power in our own lifetimes, with the collapse of the Soviet empire, and the dismantling of the Soviet Union itself. Yet now an acute observer might be able to detect signs that the old Russian power was already beng resuscitated. That's an apparently mortal wound which has been healed, and a possible model for what's happening in this chapter.

We're told that the earth follows the Beast with wonder

The head is healed, and the wonder is attached to the Beast. As though the "wounded head" and the Beast were the same thing. The same is implied in v11- "...the first Beast, whose mortal wound was healed". That would make sense on the assumption that the seven heads were coming in succession, as I suggested before, and that the "wounded head" was the seventh and last in the series. Then each head, in turn, would be the current manifestation of the Beast for its own time, and the "wounded head" would be the current and final manifestation of the Beast by the time that we reached vv3-4.

We're told that men worshipped the Beast

My theory is that the World-state of ch13 is the natural product of the world-catastrophe of ch6.

In the chronology which I've already established (see links), the "hour" when the Beast is reigning follows on from the catastrophic events of the "Four Horsemen".
I suggested that the Beast would be able to rise to power on the strength of leading and organising the world into recovery from the same.
I'm now going to suggest a way of correlating that argument with the present passage;

"The mortal wound"- The "seventh head" power collapses, or even disintegrates, under the impact of the "plague, war, famine, and death" of ch6. So does the rest of the world.

"The wound is healed"- But the "seventh head" itself makes a vigorous recovery, so that social order comes back to life with remarkable speed.

"The earth follows it with wonder"- The world reacts with astonishment, but also with enthusiasm, because the recovery of the "head" is pulling the rest of the world along with it, bringing the rest of the world back to life.

"The ten kings...are of one mind, and give over their power and authority to the Beast" (ch17 v13)-The rulers of the world in general fall under its leadership.

"And all authority was given it over every tribe and people and tongue and nation, and all who dwell on earth will worship it"-ch13 v7-8. That would be the natural consequence of everything that I've just described.

We would have to wait for these events to take place before the "seventh head" could be clearly identified. It might be one of the leading powers in the world even beforehand, but not necessarily the leading power.

But is a great catastrophe of plague,war,famine and death, were to impact upon a quarter of the world's population (ch6 v11), and if there was any one power which was dramatically prominent in the aftermath...

Then THAT would be the one to watch.




posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 01:28 PM
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Yes , I get it now. God wants to somehow punish us for doing what he willed us to and by the permission granted unto his servant Satan. So we suffer, die, and go to Hell for his profound wisdom. May god let Satan rule upon us all and may Satan beg at our very souls when we resist! Thank God for the suffering!



posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 02:21 PM
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reply to post by IamBoon
 

Half of ATS is expecting a world state of some kind to develop in one way or another.
What I'm offering, if you think about it, is a fairly plausible description of the way it might work
Nothing in your comment actually matches anything I said in my post, so there's no point in responding to it directly. You are just giving a knee-jerk reaction.



posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 03:37 PM
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No, I just heard this before and you did put some new stuff in . By the way doesn't this whole pre-destination act kinda screw up free-will>? I myself DO find revelation interesting and you put together a VERY well thought out post. I am sorry if I seem ignorant of that fact.



I wanted to know who was the whore ? The beast is ridden by her and it seems to me that she is drunk on excess , delusion , and corruption. Can you help me on that?



posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 04:08 PM
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Originally posted by IamBoon

I wanted to know who was the whore ? The beast is ridden by her and it seems to me that she is drunk on excess , delusion , and corruption. Can you help me on that?

The whore is complicated. I'm still in the middle of trying to work her out.

In the first place, she's obviously the counterpart of the "woman in heaven" in ch12, the other side of the coin. In fact the two of them ar obviously based on the two halves of Jeremiah ch4 vv30-31, which is talking about God's people Israel. So my interpretation of the two figues in Revelation is that the one in ch12 represents "God's faithful people", so the one in ch17 presumably represents the unfaithful people of God. That points towards the possibility that part of the church would be willing to compromise with the opposition.

For the "woman in heaven", I can point you to this thread;
The woman in heaven

At the same time, the woman in ch17 is "Babylon". Babylon in the OT is partly about a state that persecutes Israel- by taking them into exile- and partly about the presence of rival religions. So the "Babylon" in ch17 must somehow contain those things as well.

The "excess" is partly metaphorical- adultery as a metaphor for spiritual unfaithfulness runs all the way through the OT.
The reference to "the blood of the saints" is obviously about persecution; but which aspect of her is involved in persecution?

I will get to the harlot later in the series. I can tell you quite frankly that I expect to spend three or four different threads examining her from different angles, and I'm not yet sure about the exact relationship between herself and the Beast.

Resolving prophecy and free-will is a problem for Biblical prophecy in general. Perhaps one possible angle is that God is, in a sense, like the reader of a book- he knows what's going to happen later because he's already "read" it. But interacting with it at the same time. This is not a question that is easy to answer.



posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 04:39 PM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


Could she be Lilith? I mean she is the original whore.


Also, how do you quote just a specific part of a post? Would be helpful.



posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 04:51 PM
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Originally posted by IamBoon

Could she be Lilith? I mean she is the original whore.
Also, how do you quote just a specific part of a post? Would be helpful.

Quoting one part of a post is very easy, once you've tried it.
Click on "quote".
The whole post will then be in your edit box.
Then just run the delete key over the bits you don't want. Type in your own comments, and press "reply". Piece of cake.

Lilith is not mentioned in the Bible, so I would't try to bring her into this kind of interpretation. In any case, I see the harlot as a symbolic figure (like the "woman in heaven") representing a whole group of people. There are people who say she represents a specific organisation. I don't want to anticipate what I will be saying on that point a few weeks down the line (partly because I haven't decided yet).



posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 06:18 PM
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Observations worth making re "suffering a mortal wound".

The Russian state, arguably, "suffered a mortal wound" twice during the twentieth century. Falling apart once under the impact of the 1917 Revolution, and once under Gorbachev.

Similarly the Chinese state fell apart in the aftermath of Revolution against the emperors- and did not really come back together until the victory of Mao-tse-Tung.

Members of ATS are now arguing that the USA might fall apart. If that did happen. It would certainly be a "mortal wound". If it then revived, you could say the mortal wound had been healed.

So although I have identified the "mortal wound" with the events of ch6, there is still the possibility that it could be a separate occurrence, though that still leaves options very open.



posted on Jul, 11 2010 @ 09:10 PM
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Incidentally, if anyone should be wondering why nothing has been said to identify either the fourth kingdom of Daniel or the first Beast of Revelation with the Roman Empire-
The answer is that this is such a massive question that it will need to be considered as a separate topic in its own right.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 05:17 AM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


I agree that the beast government will arise as a result of the world wide catastrophe of the seals opening and trumpets sounding. This will clearly involve war and impacts from space and will destroy a great deal of the worlds infrastructure and cause many countries governments to collapse leaving the citizens disorganised and leaderless at time of major crises.

What organisation, country,government,person could possibly pull together the logistical nightmare of feeding and sheltering a smashed planet. Prophecy says such a man will appear and have the answers.
Little wonder the world will gladly follow such a man.

It should be borne in mind that Revelation covers a period of seven years and that R6 is really the start of the worlds major problems. However, after the devestation of R6 there is a period of relative calm and rebuilding
with our mystery leader calling for world government.

It is not until halfway through the seven year period that this leader publicly reveals himself as the man of sin, bringing in his mark of the beast economic system and thus begining the 1260 days of the Tribulation.

Until very recently I subscribed to the idea that the beast government would be a German lead United States of Europe, but I cant fit them fully into some of the remaining prophecies. More likely the U.N. will still be functional with our mystery man coming to the fore to lead the way.

I see a major key to his recovery plan will be to divide the world into 10 zones with an 'offical' in charge of each area (ten kings who are yet to receive a kingdom and for one hour give their power to the beast).



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 06:25 AM
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Woe to those who write the book with their own hands then say: "This is from God"
(Q, 2.79)



Revelation, seriously?



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 06:27 AM
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reply to post by skajkingdom
 

The book you are quoting was written with men's hands just as much as Revelation was.
So, yes, Revelation, seriously.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 09:02 AM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI
reply to post by skajkingdom
 

The book you are quoting was written with men's hands just as much as Revelation was.
So, yes, Revelation, seriously.




You didn't understand the verse literally, did you, as in "writing", "with hands", etc.?

It means those who author a book themself, THEN claim that the AUTHOR of that book is God ...

And this is the starting of Revelation:

This is the Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things which must happen soon, which he sent and made known by his angel to his servant, John, 1:2 who testified to God’s word, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, about everything that he saw.


Revelation belongs to the genre of apocalyptic literature, which was popular in both Jewish and Christian tradition. Revelation was created primarily to encourage Christians to repent of their sins and to resist Roman persecution, in expectation of the immediate return of Christ.
The author believed that Christ would return "any day now" in his generation, probably influenced through pauline writings.
In general, Revelation presents a strong Christology, a developed view of Christ, emphasizing his divine attributes, contrary to the Synoptic Gospels that emphasize his humanity.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 09:14 AM
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Originally posted by skajkingdom
You didn't understand the verse literally, did you, as in "writing", "with hands", etc.?

It means those who author a book themself, THEN claim that the AUTHOR of that book is God ...

Even in this explained version, the comment is just as true about the book which you're quoting as it is about the book which I'm quoting.
Are you acquainted with the English proverb which says "Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones"?

And why, exactly, should I accept a quotation from your preferred book as an authority for anything? I have just as much right to quote against you and the author of your Quran the verse in Revelation ch22 v18, the curse against those who "add to the words of this book".

On the question of authorship; since God has no physical hands, the only way that God can write books is to prompt humans to write them. So it is not a question of choosing between God's authorship and human authorship. They can both be true at the same time.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 09:19 AM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI



Yes, yes I know all that.

But since Revelation is actually a BAD copy of Daniel, Ezechiel and Enoch, where the author just switches "God" with "Jesus" to the horror of all monotheistic Jews and Jesus himself if he was around at that time, maybe you should concentrate on those OT books rather than the "ravings of a maniac" as Thomas Jefferson put it.

Just sayin'.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 09:35 AM
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reply to post by skajkingdom
 

I'm aware that Revelation has many, many echoes of the Old Testament, and I'm deliberately making use of them in my system of interpretation.

The word "bad" is your subjective judgement, so I'm entitled to take no notice of it. I think this series of threads is making the cumulative case that the text is valuable.

And why are you bothering to tell me what books I should be reading? Do I appear on your threads telling you that you should not be bothering with the Quran because it's just an amateurish, repetitive, BAD, imitation of the Old Testament prophets? No, I don't. I just leave you in peace to interpret your own texts.

Just saying.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 09:40 AM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI
reply to post by skajkingdom
 

I'm aware that Revelation has many, many echoes of the Old Testament, and I'm deliberately making use of them in my system of interpretation.

The word "bad" is your subjective judgement, so I'm entitled to take no notice of it. I think this series of threads is making the cumulative case that the text is valuable.

And why are you bothering to tell me what books I should be reading? Do I appear on your threads telling you that you should not be bothering with the Quran because it's just an amateurish, repetitive, BAD, imitation of the Old Testament prophets? No, I don't. I just leave you in peace to interpret your own texts.

Just saying.



OK mate. Far be it from me to dictate to you what you must read.

Peace.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by triune
reply to post by DISRAELI
 


I agree that the beast government will arise as a result of the world wide catastrophe of the seals opening and trumpets sounding.


Thank you for your contribution. It looks as though we're about 90% in agreement.

I think one point of mild difference is that I place the Beast between the seals and the trumpets. I see the trumpets as the beginning of the destruction of the Beast, with the vials completing the process.

This comes back to my point about the chronology. As I mentioned in the post, I see the "half-an-hour" mentioned in ch8 v1 as the first portion of the "one hour" of the Beast, which means that the Beast is already halfway through his reign when the trumpets start.

THis implies that some of the events in Revelation are mentioned out of sequence. I regard ch12 as a "flashback" sequence, taking the story right back to the Cross;
The woman in heaven
Satan fell from Heaven
On the wings of an eagle
So that this section doesn't actually catch up with the main story, as I see it, until ch13 v4, which describes what is happening on earth during the "silence" of ch8 v1

I think the other difference of emphasis is on the ten kings-
Does the Beast choose them and make them kings, as you suggest?
Or are they kings already before they attach themselves to the Beast?
To me, the exact wording of ch17 v13- "give over their authority and power to the Beast"- favours the second option.

Interestingly, exactly the same question arises in the case of Tolkien's "Ringwraiths". It's glaringly obvious that Tolkien has lifted the concept straight from the "ten kings" of ch17. They are nine kings to whom Sauron has given rings. But did he give them rings and thus enable them to force their way to kingship? Or were they kings already when he chose them? It is annoying (from the historian's point of view) that Tolkien doesn't seem to offer any indication, one way or the other.



posted on Jul, 12 2010 @ 08:18 PM
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Here's a different interpretation of "the mortal wound".


After the 1260 years, the beast will be mortally wounded.

Revelation 13:3, "And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death..."
Revelation 13:10, "He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword."

The prophecy is telling us that the beast would be destroyed with the sword (sword = military in this instance) at the end of its reign of exactly 1260 years of killing Christians. We just learned by the previous prophecy that this did in fact occur. But to further illustrate the fact that the prophecy also said the beast must go into captivity and die there, we find that history does tell us that the pope was removed from the Vatican, was placed in exile, and then died.

Pope dies: August 1799:
Fact: Documented Roman Catholic source states -"Half Europe thought... that with the Pope the Papacy was dead." -Joseph Rickaby "The Modern Papacy" Lectures on the History of Religion, Lecture 24, (London Catholic Truth Society, 1910), p.1


Again, this happened Exactly 42 prophetic months, or 1260 years, or a time, and time, and dividing a time after the Papacy began its powerful reign as a "woman on a beast" that the Pope did finally "...go into captivity" by the military of that day, and later did in fact die because of the actions brought forth by the "sword" or military strength of Napoleon.

Antichrist receives "deadly wound" that later heals.

Revelation 13:3, "And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast."

As we just saw, the "deadly wound" was given to the Papacy by Napoleon in 1798. The Vatican still continued as a church however. But she was completely stripped of her civil and political power just as the prophecy declared. Then, suddenly in 1929, we see the Italian government recognizing Vatican City once again as an independent state. This political move once again made the Pope a religio-political power! Just as prophecy said, the mortal wound that was administered in 1798 by Napoleon was supposed to be healed. Notice how the newspapers of that day actually used prophetic language without realizing it..


Mussolini and (Cardinal) Gasspari sign historic Roman pact.
"The Roman question tonight was a thing of the past, and the Vatican was at peace with Italy... In affixing the autographs to the memorable document healing the wound of many years, extreme cordiality was displayed on both sides" -The San Francisco Chronicle. Feb. 11, 1929



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Pope Becomes Ruler Of A State Again

Rome, June 7.--From 11 o' clock this morning there was another sovereign independent State in the world. At that time Premier Mussolini, as Italian Foreign Minister representing King Victor Emmanuel--the first Italian Premier ever to cross the threshold of the Vatican--exchanged with Cardinal Gasparri, Papal Secretary of State, representing Pope Pius XI, ratifications of the treaties signed at the Lateran Palace on Feb. 11. By that simple act the sovereign independent State of Vatican City came into existence. -New York Times July 7, 1929


The beast is one that "was", "is not" and "yet is"

Revelation 17:8, "... behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is."
The Beast that was: The Roman church began in 538ad and continued until Napoleon sent in General Berthier in 1798ad

...and is not: From 1798ad until the signing of the Lateran treaty in 1929 the Roman Church/state was non-existent.

...yet is: From 1929 to present the Roman Church has been a church & state.www.remnantofgod.org...


To bring it up to date:



Pope Endorses “World Political Authority”
By Cliff Kincaid | July 7, 2009

The controversial Papal statement comes just before a meeting of the G-8 nations and a scheduled meeting between the Pope and President Obama at the Vatican on July 10.
Some in the media are calling it just a statement about “economic justice.” But Pope Benedict XVI’s “Charity in Truth” statement, also known as an encyclical, is a radical document that puts the Roman Catholic Church firmly on the side of an emerging world government.

In explicit and direct language, the Pope calls for a “true world political authority” to manage the affairs of the world. At the same time, however, the Pope also warns that such an international order could “produce a dangerous universal power of a tyrannical nature” and must be guarded against somehow.

The New York Times got it right this time, noting the Pope’s call for a world political authority amounted to endorsement of a New World Economic Order, a long-time goal of the old Soviet-sponsored international communist movement. Bloomberg.com highlighted the Pope’s call for a new world order with “teeth.”...www.aim.org...


But I see where you said you will address that in a later thread,so please forgive me for jumping ahead!

I can see how Russia will play it's part in the antichrist reign,but I believe they are answering to a power above them.(As in the old saying,"All Roads Lead to Rome")



posted on Jul, 13 2010 @ 11:50 AM
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reply to post by On the Edge
 

Thank you for that contribution.
That writer gives another interesting angle.
A couple of observations I would want to make wearing my "student of history" hat.

First of all, 538 strikes me as a very arbitrary date for "the beginning of Papal power". I've glanced into my Cambridge Mediaeval History, I can't see that it marks any very significant change. I would have thought that the really important development was at least a century later, with the invasion of the Lombards, which cut off Rome from the East.

And in regard to the loss of Papal independance, 1798 is a less significant date than 1870, when the last remnant of the Papal States was taken over by the Italian government. The 1929 agreement was about resolving the issues caused by what happened in 1870.

There's definitely room for debate here, if we're relying on dates.

PS Oh yes, nearly forgot. I don't think the Beast starts killing Christians until after it has recovered from the mortal wound, which messes up the dates completely.



[edit on 13-7-2010 by DISRAELI]





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