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An Ancient Beast

OVERVIEW  –  In Revelation, the “beast from the sea” is the latest incarnation of an ancient entity that has been stalking the “seed of the woman” since the fall of Adam .  In the  Book of Revelation , the “ Dragon,  that  Ancient Serpent ” is poised to wage “ war ” against the “ seed of the woman ,” even while standing on the seashore to summon his own “ seed ” to execute this “ war ”: the “ beast from the sea ” and the “ beast from the earth .” His target is the “ seed of the woman ,” composed of men and women that have the “ testimony of Jesus .” - [ Green Snake - Photo by Julia Joppien on Unsplash ].

King and Shepherd

Jesus is the promised king from the second Psalm who rules from the messianic throne and “shepherds the nations”   –   Revelation 1:4-6 .  Revelation  declares Jesus to be the “ ruler of the kings of the earth .” His installation on the messianic throne was based on his past death and resurrection; it is an  accomplished fact .   He is the king promised by Yahweh, the one who reigns over the earth from “ Zion . ” But he rules in paradoxical and unexpected ways - [ Photo by Pawan Sharma on Unsplash ].

Lordly Day

On the isle of Patmos, suddenly, John found himself “in the Spirit,” and projected into the “Day of the Lord”   –   Revelation 1:9-10 .  W hile exiled on the island of Patmos, John came to be “ in the spirit ,” where he found himself “ in the lordly day ” and received visions about the seven churches of Asia. Though his visions commenced in the first century, ultimately, they culminated in the final judgment, the “ Day of the Lord ,” when the wicked were punished and the righteous vindicated - [ Photo by  Michael Busch  on Unsplash ].

The Great Earthquake

The final day of wrath is characterized by unprecedented celestial and terrestrial events, including the “great earthquake”   –   Revelation 6:12-17 .  In four separate passages,  Revelation  refers to the coming “ great earthquake ,” and each time, it locates this event at the end of the age, the day of God’s final “ wrath .” Chaos in the heavens and unimaginable seismic shifts on the earth will mark the arrival of the “ Day of the Lord ,” the  Great Dénouement  when God vindicates His people and punishes His enemies - [ Photo by  NOAA  on Unsplash ].

Season of Tribulation

A “tribulation” was coming upon the saints, the “indignation,” such as the people of God had never experienced   -   Daniel 12:1-13 .  The final vision concludes with a description of the terrible “ tribulation ” that would befall the Jewish nation, one more severe than any preceding trial in the history of Israel. When interpreting the passage, we must remember that there were no chapter divisions in the original document penned by Daniel. Contextually, chapter 12 is the continuation of the vision from chapters 10 and 11 - [ Photo by  Torsten Dederichs  on Unsplash ].

Bear and Leopard - Identities

In Daniel’s vision, how do we identify the second and third kingdoms, the “Bear” and the “Leopard”?   -   Daniel 7:5-6 .  Daniel saw “ four beasts   ascending ” from the sea. Each of the first three featured characteristics from the animal kingdom: the winged lion, the bear, and the leopard with two pairs of wings. The fourth beast did not resemble any known animal. It was a horrifying monstrosity with “ great iron teeth ,” “ ten horns ,” and another “ little horn, with a mouth speaking great things .” - [ Acropolis - Photo by Cristina Gottardi on Unsplash ].