Anti-Christ & the Trinity of Evil
Chapter 13: 11-18
“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 was healed. He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire 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 not worship the image of the beast to be killed. He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or 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. Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.”
Let me begin by stating that I believe the Bible teaches that the Rapture happens before the beginning of the Tribulation. God rescues His New Testament church and other saints before the period of the Tribulation starts. Some may differ with me as to how soon after the Rapture the Tribulation begins, but it is my belief and understanding from all that I have seen that we will be raptured prior to the beginning of the Tribulation.
Some have asked if I believed that the rapture was first because of some of the warnings that I mentioned last week. Let me remind you that every apostle, including Paul, was actively looking for the rapture. But every one of the apostles was also executed for the sake of the Gospel. Nero murdered hundreds or maybe thousands of Christians in the first century because he hated them. In the book, Trail of Blood, one bishop is quoted as saying that, had not the Catholic church killed off the Anabaptist for some 1,200 years, they would have been overrun by them.
Today there are brothers and sisters in the Lord who are being imprisoned and even killed by regimes around the world. We have had pastors arrested for the sake of the Gospel in places like North Korea and other places. I can hear you say, but that is over there. Have you read the news? Have you watched the news? There are political people in Canada and the USA that are aggressively working to bring in Socialism as the predominant economic tool of the west. Look at the Socialist regimes of the 20th Century and think of how Christians were treated in the Soviet Union, China and other places.
I am not a fear monger, but God’s people need to be spiritually prepared to have some trouble before the Tribulation. Being a Christian is not all ‘rainbows and cotton candy.’ When you are the source of truth in a world of lies, you will be hated. Don’t believe me? Then read the Gospels and look at the life of Jesus.
Today we will look at the Trinity of Evil:
In his desire to copy God and ‘be like’ Him, Satan will create an imperfect trinity just like God exists as a perfect Trinity. There will be the anti-Christ, the False Prophet and an Image that will appear to be breathing/alive. Remember that John is writing at the end of the first century after Jesus; they did not even know what electricity was, furthermore a robot. It is clear that some of the things that John wrote were truly for our time; and when we sit to study these things, we can see that we truly are, as far as we can draw from the scriptures, the last generation before the rapture and then the Tribulation.
The progress of robotics over the past 20 years has been so good that we probably do not even know how good they are. In 1984 when Terminator came out, we all loved the sci-fi idea that robots could rule the world. Now here we are 34 years later and we have robots that can run, adapt, learn, mimic human behavior, and some are getting so fast with their processors that they may soon be able to out think humans. The bane of technology is that it is only good in good hands. Like any tool, in the wrong hands it becomes a weapon and stops being a benefit.
The Lamb/Dragon, verses 11-14
The anti-Christ understands that we need something or someone to worship. From the very beginning of Creation, we were built to worship someone or something. Satan is mindful of this. Other than the US Constitution which deliberately prohibits the merging of the State and Religion, every other major dominant world government from the Tower in Babel, the Pharaohs of Egypt, the Babylonian Empire, the Medo-Persians, the Greeks and especially the Romans, the political leader has always demanded spiritual worship. They want to be seen as gods or at least appointed by the gods so as to stop dissension and thwart those who would challenge their position. Who in their right mind would challenge a god? To some degree, the Pope is still seen as ‘God’s representative’ here on earth and is often addressed as Il Papa, The Father, in deliberate disobedience to the written scripture:
Matthew 23:9 “And do not call anyone on earth your father, for you have one Father, who is in heaven.”
This is assigning the position of our Heavenly Father to a mere man. God alone is our Heavenly Father; and as such, no other man is to be called The Father as a title. This has NOTHING to do with being called a father when you have a child. It is an act of worship that is only allowed to be directed at the true and living God, hence the model prayer begins, “Our Father,” referring to God the Father.
The world of the anti-Christ will incorporate politics and religion in the leadership. The anti-Christ will have two (2) apparent equals, one who is the religious leader. How do we know that? He appears as a lamb. Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. He will appear to offer peace in a time of great turmoil, but this is just a charade. He will speak like a dragon; his words are dangerous and deadly. His job is to point the whole world to worship the beast, the anti-Christ.
Like the anti-Christ, he will be able to, or appear to be able to, call down fire from heaven; and as well, he can perform great signs and wonders. This is demonic warfare at its finest. Satan, possibly indwelling the anti-Christ, gives some of his power to this man who is his religious leader. This leader can perform signs and wonders just like the anti-Christ.
In Daniel 8: 23-25 we see these prophetic words about the ‘wonders’ of the anti-Christ:
“And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practice, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.”
Notice that this king will have power, but not of/by his own power. And, in verse 25, we see he will use “craft.” We could use the term ‘slide of hand,’ but it may be even more sinister than that. Satan has spiritual power as well, and he controls the demons and what they do. They serve him now. This anti-Christ will have powers given to him as well as his false prophet that are from Satan himself.
So, all we have left is to look at the “image of the beast.”
The Image to the Beast, verses 14-15
We know what an image is; it is a statue. In Daniel 3:1, we see that Nebuchadnezzar made an “image,” a statue that he wanted the whole world to worship. Once again, we see that political leaders often want to be seen as gods and worshipped like gods. The anti-Christ will be no different; he too will want to be worshipped as a god. So, the false prophet, the second person of the evil trinity, makes an idol and appears to empower it to breathe, to speak and to act.
In a video that I was able to watch on YouTube called Mankind’s Last Invention, there is some eye-opening commentary on the speed and the scope of the growth of Artificial Intelligence – the speed of processing information in comparison with man’s speed of processing information and how these are self-learning machines. Here is a short video from 2011. Imagine where we have come from this. https://youtu.be/UIWWLg4wLEY.
This idol – this machine – will be able to talk, converse, make decisions, be able to learn, speak and convey the information that the anti-Christ wants put out; and he/it will enforce the rules and have the power to kill people. If he is connected to the internet, then he/it will have access to anyone, anywhere that has an internet connection.
No wonder we have the governments of the world trying to get control of the internet. This is the framework of the anti-Christ.
In an article published on June 18th, 2018, the Stratfor Worldview gave us an overview of which governments are now controlling what on the internet. By far, the US is the lease intrusive; but countries like China, Turkey and Russia block a lot of content from their citizens. They have the power to control the internet, and this is the foundation that is going to give the anti-Christ access to all. He will be able to limit what you have access to as far as information is concerned. If you refuse to worship the anti-Christ and his evil trinity, then you will be killed.
I cannot imagine the confusion that John must have had. He had obviously seen images before. The Middle East was full of them. No doubt there were idols of Caesar in the area; he had seen pagan gods before. But these all needed to be carried by men and stabilized so as not to fall. But here was an image that could speak, move and act of its own power. For sure he had never seen that before.
The Number, verses 17-18
No number in history has been more scrutinized than this number, 666. The mark of the beast. We have had movies about it and more speculation than the stock market. Simply put, this number is the number of perfect imperfection. God’s perfect number is 7; and as such, 777 is the number of perfect perfections. An example of this perfection is in Genesis 1:1,
“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”
In Hebrew this is a 7-word statement. It is the number of perfection. There is a lot of research online about ‘time, space and matter.’ But God established this principle in the very first verse of creation. In the beginning (time), God created the heavens (space) and the earth (matter). Perfection. God can only create perfection, as He is perfect. In the evil parallel, we have the anti-Christ and his brood who create a number; and theirs is imperfection. The world we live in today is trying to create a Utopia without Jesus and God. No such place exists. Without God’s perfection, utopia is impossible.
There is little in the text that tells us about what this mark will be. What we do know is that, whatever the number is, the people left on planet Earth will need it to buy and to sell. Many people do not get this; they are so focused on the ‘magic’ number that they don’t see the big picture. The government will control everything: food, clothing, medications, travel and the like. There will be NO purchasing or selling without this number. We do also know that the number will be on their bodies, either on the right hand or their forehead. Right now, there is work on making invisible tattoos. There are countless articles about UV Tattoos online and infrared tattoos as well.
We have become accustomed to numbers over the last century. Here in Canada we have a Social Insurance Number (SIN); all of your credit and employment is tracked with that number. You must have a SIN to be employed and to get certain benefits. The SIN number will tell the user what province (state) you are born in or entered the country in as an immigrant. Many nations employ some form of this tracking; we are being conditioned to do so. Our kids are being conditioned to buy online with a number, either a credit card or debit card. Companies like Amazon offer almost everything including food. The framework for the anti-Christ in place. All that is left is to centralize the control of these large companies to the government, and voila! – no one can buy or sell except through the government.
We see this stuff developing right before our eyes, and we are like the frog in the pot of cold water that is boiled to death as the temperature is gradually turned up.
God calls us to wisdom. See what men are doing right before our very eyes. We cannot stop what God has told us will happen. But we can see it happening and not be ignorant of the Devil and his devices. This will strengthen our faith; we can see the word of God being fulfilled right in real time.
God is absolute truth. The words of Daniel are just as true today as 2,600 years ago.
Look around you. Don’t be afraid of the devil; he is on a leash. Rather, rejoice that God is true, His word is true, and His plan is afoot. The end is near, and the enemy of our souls will soon be crushed as was promised in Genesis 3:15.
Be strong and keep the faith. God is in control.