The Beast from the Sea… (Rev. 13:1-10) :: By Dr. Donald Whitchard

From the Editor: This will be Donald’s last article for a while, as his serious health condition has made him extremely tired. Donald said, “If anyone would like to drop me a note, my mailing address and phone number are on my website:, and I can also be reached at: I’ll be back. Thanks.”

The Beast from the Sea: A Portrait of the Antichrist

Daniel 11:36-37; 2 Thessalonians 2:3; 1 John 2:28, 4:3; Revelation 13:1-10

Summary: Revelation 13 gives us a detailed picture of Satan’s counterfeit Messiah, whom the Scriptures call the Antichrist. He is “the Man of Sin” who will delude the whole world into following him with horrific consequences and eternal regret.

Revelation 13 gives us the description and work of the prophesied Antichrist. The Bible describes this agent of Satan as “the man of sin” (2 Thessalonians 2:3) and “the Son of Perdition.” He will be the worst blasphemer, the worst hater of God, the worst dictator, the worst tyrant, and the worst of all that is vile, evil, and wicked. The Bible’s description of this monster in human flesh gives us an opportunity to see how the devil works in the hearts and minds of those who reject the offer of salvation in Christ, deciding instead to embrace the world and its promises that turn out to be nothing more than dung and mud. Satan has always been an imitator. He will take what the LORD does and try to duplicate it.

The Lord Jesus Christ is the revelation of God the Father. In the first chapter of John’s gospel, there are three verses worthy of note. In verses 1, 14, and 18, we learn that Jesus is the living, breathing revelation of God the Father.

Verse 18 reads, “No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has DECLARED Him.” The word “DECLARED” comes from the Greek word “EXEGEOMAI.” We get the word “EXEGESIS” from this translation. It means “to lead out, signifies to make known, to unfold in teaching.” (Source: Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words” by W.E. Vine, p. 282).

In preaching the Word, we use the principles of exegesis to “lead out and explain” the truths contained in the text. When the Lord Jesus came, He came to “explain, to lead out, to narrate” God. In other words, Jesus Christ was and is God in the flesh. He was able to say, “I and my Father are One” (John 10:30). He was also able to say, “He that has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). Jesus is God Incarnate, God in the flesh!

With the Antichrist, Satan will attempt to duplicate this relationship between Jesus Christ and God the Father. The Antichrist will be a living, breathing replication of the devil, Satan incarnate, Satan in the flesh. This will be part of what is known as the “Satanic Trinity”: Satan the devil, the Antichrist, and the False Prophet. The sad fact is that most of the world will bow before this unholy lot and not to the True Trinity of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. One God in three Persons (Matthew 3:16-17, 28:18-20; Luke 3:21-22; 1 John 5:7).

Let us give our attention to this man who will be known as the Antichrist. I personally believe that he is alive and working behind the scenes to set everything into motion in order to take control of both this world and those who reject God.

In verse 1, we see the apostle John standing on the seashore when a mysterious “beast” rises from out of the sea. This is symbolic language. The “sea” in the Bible refers to the whole of humanity. This individual will come from among men. He may have incredible powers that surpass all the other rulers of time, but he will be nothing more than a man. The Antichrist will be empowered by the devil, and he will wield power and authority. But unlike the Lord Jesus Christ, this man will have human parents. He is NOT a “godman.” He will receive his kingdom and power from Satan.

Who is this man? I don’t believe that we who are followers of Jesus Christ should dwell on that subject. Our task is to tell others about Jesus in order to get as many people saved and away from the influence of this devil incarnate, plain and simple. We will be raptured before this monster arrives on the scene (John 14:1-3; 1 Corinthians 15:51-58; 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10, 4:13-18; Revelation 3:10). And I think that once we arrive back on the earth with Jesus at the Second Coming, we will briefly witness this fiend and his counterfeit prophet thrown alive into the Lake of Fire (Revelation 19:19-20). I don’t want to have to look at the devil and these losers any longer than necessary.

Verses 1-2 describe how the Antichrist will operate. He is said to have “seven heads” and “ten horns” and on his heads a “blasphemous name.” Again, we have symbols used to present literal facts. The “seven heads” are “seven mountains, on which the harlot sits (Revelation 17:9). The “great Harlot” represents the apostate “church” that will exist during the Tribulation period. The harlot sits upon these “seven hills.”

Only one city in the world was built upon seven hills, the city of Rome. I believe that the Roman Catholic “church” fits this description well, as it has tried to keep the Scriptures away from the common people, initiated the Inquisition, approved the execution of Protestants, upheld the corrupt teaching of “papal Infallibility” and the rise of “popes” who have acted in ways that fit the pattern of the Antichrist throughout history.

There are apostate Protestant churches as well who embrace heresies and lifestyles that are clearly against the Bible. These false “churches” will emerge into one “religious system” at the time of the Tribulation. They will be nothing more than a tool of convenience for the Beast in his quest for control. This false “church” will be destroyed by him near the conclusion of the Tribulation.

The “ten horns” represent ten “kings,” or co-rulers with the Beast (17:2), and some Bible scholars believe that it is from this conglomeration of rulers that the Antichrist will arise. We are witnessing the rise and power of the World Economic Forum and its goal of total global domination. There is widespread resistance to their quest for control, but I think that this will come to naught after the Rapture and the chaos that will ensue for a time. There will be a cry for law and order, and these “kings” will be the ones to pull it off for a time, with the Antichrist being seen as the one and authentic leader.

When the Antichrist does assume control, he will blaspheme God in some method that the world will applaud. This world system wants God out of the way or eliminated altogether, and the “Beast” will do his best to see that this delusion is carried out to the fullest (Romans 1:18-32). The Beast will possess the characteristics and cruelties of the major world powers that once wielded their influence upon civilization, such as Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome. Each empire was more powerful than the other, and the Beast will have at his disposal the knowledge that made these kingdoms great and also terrifying.

Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. This coming world ruler will be the epitome of corruption and tyranny, yet the world will bow before him in awe and wonder. Verses 3-10 show us this hold on the world and the terrors that the Beast will wield at the appointed time.

We will pick up from here in our continuing look at Satan’s counterfeit. Please be sure that you are ready to meet the Lord Jesus (Romans 10:9-10) and avoid this oncoming time of horror.