Dr. John W. McCormick
The world has long awaited a “Super-Man” – a man who can unify national politics, stabilize the world’s commercial markets, restore order to our chaotic social structures, and draw all the world’s religions together into one big “super church”.
The Bible reveals the fact that during The Tribulation, just such a man will appear. He will come into political prominence and power in such a dramatic fashion as to dazzle the world. His personal attributes, his political know-how, and his leadership ability will capture the fancy and the admiration of all men.
Scripture also makes it clear that this man’s powers will be supernaturally derived. He will be in league with Satan himself! The rise of this coming “Super Man” is described in careful detail in – Rev.13:1 “And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his heads ten crowns, and upon his heads the names of blasphemy. 2. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.”
A number of things in these brief words demand our attention
I. THE PLACE OF HIS RISE – Vs.1:” . .and saw a beast rise up out of the sea. . .“ John’s description of the rise of the coming “Super Man” bears a number of striking details very similar to Daniel’s vision of this same person: Dan.7:2: “Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, the four winds of of the heaven strove upon the great sea.”
Two things are important here:
A. The Location – “. .the great sea.. “ (Dan.7:2) .. .“. . .and saw a beast rise up out of the sea.. “(Rev.13:1). This is undoubtedly a reference to the Mediterranean Sea. Thus the Antichrist (Satan’s Super Man) will come from the Middle East. Prophetically speaking, the Middle East is the most important geographical area in the world, for it is there that God’s Dispensational purposes will unfold.
Moreover it is very fitting that the final scenes of human history should be played out in the Middle East. Even the secular historians are agreed that civilization as we know it began in the Tigris-Euphrates River Valley, near the Mediterranean Sea. The Bible speaks of a river that went out of The Garden of Eden, and then divided into four rivers, two of which can be easily identified as the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers:
Gen.2:10: “And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads. 11. The name of the first is Pison (Unidentified): that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold; 12. And the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium (pearls?) and the onyx stone. 13. And the name of the second river is Gihon (Unidentified): the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia. 13. And the name of the third river is Hiddekel (The Tigris River): that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates.”
B. The Agitation – Dan.7:2:”. .and, behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea..” In Scripture, “the sea” is sometimes used to symbolize national or international upheavel, political and civil turmoil:
Isa.57:20:”But the wicked are like the troubled sea when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt. 21. There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.”
Almost every despotic ruler who has ever come to power has done so during times of great social, economic, and political confusion: Kaiser Wilhelm, Adolph Hitler, Ho Chi Minn, the Ahiatolha Khomeni, Yassar Arafat, to name but a few. Such men are opportunists, who take advantage of the situation, and seize their power without warning. Consequently each one of them has left a long trail of blood behind him; and the Antichrist will be no exception.
II. THE PERIOD OF THE RISE OF THE ANTICHRIST.
The question frequently discussed with regard to the rise of Satan’s Super Man is: when will he first appear on the scene of world politics?
The Word of God gives the answer in clear and unmistakeable language:
2 Thess.2:3: “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 4. Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he, as God, sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.
17. Remember ye not, that, when I was with you, I told you these things? 6. And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in His (God’s) time. 7. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only He Who now letteth (restraineth) will let (continue to restrain) until He be taken out of the way. 8. And then shall that wicked (one) be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the Spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming.”
Students of Bible prophecy know that the words “falling away” are from the Greek word apostasia, meaning “to defect, to forsake, to abandon, to turn away from.” The Apostle states it clearly and bluntly in:
I Tim.4:1: “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times, some shall depart from the faith (emphasis mine), giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; 2. Speaking lies in hypocrisy: having their conscience seared with a hot iron; 3. Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.”
These words are such a perfect description of our own day that they sound like they were written this morning! There is such a wholesale turning away from the faith these days that if one has not heard from a preacher within the last six months, it is difficult to know what the preacher believes!
But in order to “pinpoint” the time of the rise of the Antichrist, we must take another fact into consideration. In the passage in 2 Thess. 2:6-8 Paul states clearly that something (or someone) is preventing the rise of the man of sin, and until that restraining power is “taken out of the way” (Vs.7), the Antichrist cannot be manifested.
The question as to the identity of this Restrainer has been debated for centuries, but most conservative students of Bible prophecy agree that the Restrainer is the Holy Spirit. Therefore we believe that the man of sin, the Anti-christ cannot be revealed until after the Holy Spirit is removed at the Rapture of The Church. This would establish the Period of the Rise of the Antichrist as being early in The Tribulation Week.
III. THE PERSON WHO WILL RISE.
Another question which has been discussed among expositors and students of Bible prophecy concerns whether the “Beast” is a man or a system. It is difficult to understand how any honest Bible student can understand or argue that the Beast mentioned in Rev.13 is a system. We state dogmatically and categorically that the Beast is a man.
A. He Is Declared To Be A Man. Rev.13:18 “Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man (emphasis mine): and his number is six hundred, threescore, and six.”
This is further confirmed by the inspired words of the Apostle Paul in;
Thess.2:3:”Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin (emphasis mine) be revealed, the son of perdition.”
B. His Description Throughout Is That Of A Man. He speaks; he is worshipped; and he makes war against the saints. Such descriptive words would be senseless in speaking of a system. At the helm of every system there must be at least one person.
A few years ago the writer was given a pamphlet by someone who was enthusiastically “sharing” it as widely as possible. The author of the pamphlet was not identified, (which is not hard to understand!). But the paper contained some electrifying “factual information” concerning a “giant computer” which was supposed to have been recently built in Belgium. This giant computer was said to contain a “complete” file on “every man, woman, or child in the world”. Moreover this file was said to have very intimate knowledge of each person, such as whether he or she preferred silk, nylon, polyester, or cotton undergarments; whether each married person was faithful to his or her spouse; whether each person drank tea or coffee with or with— out cream or sugar; and so on ad infinitum, ad nauseum! But the most disturbing “information” in the pamphlet was the “fact” that this giant computer “somewhere” in Belgium was named “The Beast”, and that the serial number on a little plate on the back of the machine began with the digits “666”!
Such unfounded sensationalism as this has no place in the thinking of sensible students of the Word of God.
C. His Deportment Is That Of A Man.
1. He Will Blaspheme God. Rev.13;6:”And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His Name, and His tabernacle, and them that dwell in Heaven.” A system cannot blaspheme. Only a person within the system can do that.
2. He Will Persecute The Jewish Remnant. Rev.13:7:”And it was given him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them..” Again, a system does not persecute people: it is people who persecute people.
D. His Dominion Will Be That Of A Man. Rev.13:7:”. . .and power was given him over all kindreds, tongues, and nations.”
This man will exercise world wide political power and authority which a system could never accomplish.
E. His Destruction Will Be That Of A Man. 2 Thess.2:8: “And then shall that wicked (one) be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the Spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming.” The language here makes sense only with reference to a person.
F. His Destiny Will Be That Of A Man. Rev.19:19 “And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him that sat on the horse, and against His army. 20. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them which had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive (emphasis mine) into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.” The “lake of fire” is a place of punishment for persons, not for systems.
G. His Designations Are Those Of A Man. Every time the Bible speaks of the Beast it uses masculine pronouns such as “he,” “him,” and “his.” Not one time does it use the neuter gender in referring to the Beast.
IV. THE PERSONAL ATTRIBUTES OF THE BEAST.
A. His Sovereign Rule – Rev.13:1 “And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads.
The “heads” symbolize intelligence, self—determining ability. The number “seven” symbolizes dispensational fullness. For a limited time, the beast will exercise sovereign rule over The Tribulation earth.
B. His Secondary Rulers — Rev. 13:1 “. . .and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads, and ten horns. ..“
The “ten horns” which John saw on the beast represents puppet rulers: Rev.17:12: “And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour (a short time?) with the beast.”
Many conservative expositors believe the ten horns will be the final manifestation of the federated states of Europe. They further believe that The European Common Market is the “forerunner” of these federated states.
One question has bothered students of Bible prophecy for generations, namely, will the United States of America play a leading role in the events of the final days of the Age? If so, why is there no clear indication of such in prophetic passages?
Few nations in history have endured more than a hundred years. The United States of America has existed and thrived well over two hundred years. She has played such a prominent part in world affairs that she is loved by a few, hated by many, and feared by all.
Why then do the Scriptures seem to be silent on the matter of the role America will take in the world affairs of the last days? There are two possible answers: One: the United States will be totally destroyed in an all out nuclear war just before, or soon after, the beginning of The Tribulation. Second: the United States will be so completely “absorbed” by another nation as to lose her identity. The latter seems to be the most likely!
One does not have to be a social or political expert to understand that this nation is in serious trouble. Public morals are descending further into the gutter each passing day. There has scarcely been a President in the last fifty years who has not had at least one scandal to mar his term in office. The drug traffic has not only made its inroads into the young people of America, it has so corrupted public officials and police officers that it is totally beyond control. America’s public school system has been so fully influenced by John Dewey’s philosophy of Humanism that its teachers have been reduced to “baby sitters” with no power or authority to teach or to discipline. Consequently the public schools have been aptly labeled as “Blackboard Jungles!” And to complete the picture, there is hardly a state in the Union in which the Christian Schools are not fighting the courts for survival!
But the clearest indication that our troubled nation is in great peril is the recent scandals that have surfaced in the field of Television Evangelism. While the Television preachers have hurled charges and counter—charges at each other, the world has laughed and scoffed, and been comforted in their own sins and iniquities.
We believe therefore that the reason America will not be a leader in the events of the last days will not be due to her destruction from without by some super—power, but her deterioration from within by her moral, religious, and political corruption.
C. His Sudden Appearance. – Rev.l3:2:”And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard. .“ The outstanding characteristic of a leopard is its speed. Thus the Antichrist will come to power so quickly that his political opponents will have no time to strengthen their fight against him. This is the manner in which all dictators have accomplished their ambitious purposes.
D. His Strength Politically. Rev.13:2:”. . . .and his feet were as the feet of a bear…” The outstanding characteristic of a bear is its strength. . . Thus the Antichrist will be politically invincible – for a while.
E. His Speaking Ability – Rev.13:2:” and his mouth as the mouth of a lion. . . .“ The Beast will be an excellent public speaker. (More about this later. .)
F. His Satanic Power — Rev.13:2:”. .. .and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.” Satan offered this same power to Jesus: Matt.4:8: “Again, the devil taketh Him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth Him all the kingdoms of this world, and the glory of them; 9. And saith unto Him, All these things will I give Thee, if Thou wilt fall down and worship me.” Satan was once an arch (chief) angel. He was the first angel to be created, and was specially endowed with superior beauty and wisdom by God. But Lucifer (“Son of the Morning”) became filled with pride, and the time came when he was no longer satisfied to worship the Creator, he decided that he should be worshipped himself! Thus he rebelled against the Throne of Jehovah, and was cast out of his place of honor (Isa.14:9—17;Eze.28:ll—l9). But Satan has never given up the idea that he should be worshipped!
Here is the full explanation for all the suffering, all the confusion, and all the turmoil of history! It has been –and still is – a dispute over “throne rights”! Therefore the issue that must be settled in each heart is: Who is going to occupy the throne of your life?
This struggle over “throne rights” has already been settled in heaven. During The Tribulation, it will break out on earth, when the Beast will be energized by Satan. For a brief period of time, the Antichrist will enjoy world—wide acclaim and adoration. But the rule of the Beast will end abruptly with the Return of Christ at the close of The Tribulation. (2 Thess.2:8; Rev.19:11—21).
HIS REVERSAL & HIS RESTORATION TO POWER
Sometime after the Beast first comes to power, he will suffer a humiliating defeat: Rev.13:3: ”And I saw one of his heads, as it were, wounded to death”..
Some conservative students of Bible prophecy believe the Beast will literally be assassinated soon after he first comes to power, and that he will be raised again in such a spectacular manner as to capture the awe and the attention of the whole world. They further believe that because he is called the “Antichrist” that he will of necessity imitate the death and resurrection of Christ.
But the writer has had a problem accepting this idea for the simple reason that it gives Satan the power to create life. Satan can imitate Divine acts, but he cannot duplicate them. Therefore we must reject this view for the same reason that we reject the idea that the Antichrist will be a reincarnation of Judas.
But in order to determine what will actually happen, the Bible reader has only to pay attention to a certain phrase in Rev.13:3, namely, the three words “as it were”. This short phrase always identifies figurative or symbolic language. The reader is urged to examine the following passages where the same words occur: Rev.8:8,10; 9:7,9; 10:1; 15:2.
We believe therefore that soon after the Beast rises to power, he will receive a crushing and unexpected political defeat that will be so devastating that it will seem that his political career is over forever. But the Beast will make a political comeback that will be nothing short of miraculous.
Rev.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. 4. And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? Who is able to make war against him?”
Here is a clear and unmistakable description of worldwide devil worship! Even now the earth is being prepared for the worship of Satan on an international scale. The “Church of Satan” is already a realty, with groups in almost every major city in the world, as well as on the campus of practically every college or university.
Today’s devil worshippers hold “Black Masses” in which they have been known to offer live human sacrifices. Many police officers in America believe that a number of children who mysteriously disappear each year have been offered to Satan in these “Black Masses.”
Moreover there can be little doubt that the modern rock music subculture is one of the primary breeding grounds for demonism and the occult. The pulsating beat of hard rock music (?) has a decided hypnotic effect which dulls the mind, and empties it of all thought, thus making it easier for demonic spirits to take control. The suggestive and often blasphemous lyrics are also designed to weaken the moral and ethical sensitivities of the mind, and to intensify the emotions to the point of frenzy. When these two forces are combined, and then accompanied with wild contortions of the body, it is little wonder that teen—age suicide increases in direct proportion to the participation of young people in the hard rock scene. But no hard rock concert would be complete without the flashing psychedelic lights that are Satanically designed to confuse the mind and the emotions. Surely any thoughtful person should be able to see how Satan is already preparing the world to receive the political genius who will be revealed soon after the removal of the Church.
But before we leave this particular line of thought, we must consider another factor which will help the Beast to gain world—wide acceptance. It is recorded for our consideration in- 2 Thes.2:9: “Even him whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power, and signs, and lying wonders, 10. And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11. And for this cause shall God send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12. That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”
Here is one of the darkest pictures in all the Bible. It is a portrait of a generation that will be Divinely reprobated. Without a doubt, the worst form of judgment that a people could suffer is simply for God to abandon them. Our Lord warned the people of His generation about this very thing:
John 5:39: “Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. 40. And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life. 41. I receive not honor from men. 42. But I know you, that ye have not the love of God in you! 43. I am come in my Father’s Name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.”
The Apostle Paul was well aware of the blinding power of Satan towards men:
2 Cor.4:3: “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4. In whom the god of this world (Satan) hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, Who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”
Now it would be bad enough if the blinding power of Satan were confined to those who are lost; but such is not the case. He can also cloud the mental processes of the saved:
2 Cor.11:3: “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtility, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.”
We need not labor the point here that the Apostle was speaking to saved Corinthians. The writer has been traveling for twenty years in Bible Conferences, Revivals, and Missionary Conferences which have taken him into almost all of the fifty states, and into seven foreign countries. In that twenty year period, there has very definitely been a gradual decline in the quality of church music. Many so-called fundamental churches are allowing a slow infiltration of a worldly type of music which bears many of the marks of today’s hard rock style of lyrics and rhythm. The excuse that is so often given is: “We don’t want to lose our young people.”
One wonders how any sound, Bible believing congregation can possibly ignore the clear injunctions in the New Testament concerning proper music.
In Eph.5:18, Paul exhorts the Ephesian believers to “be filled with the Spirit.” Then in the next verse he begins to give three marks of the Spirit filled believer; and the very first one has to do with music and singing:
Eph.5:19:”Speaking to yourselves in psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your hearts to the Lord.”
The parallel passage in Colossians is equally specific:
Col.3:16: “Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”
Thus the music of the church must be as carefully selected as the Scripture readings, because there is no more powerful force in the human emotions than music. Even if music did nothing more than entertain, it would still be a driving influence to be handled cautiously. But music not only entertains, it moulds and shapes like few things in the world.
A great thinker once said: “If you will let me write a nation’s music, I can also write its laws!” That was no idle boast. It is the writer’s firm conviction that society will never eliminate drugs until it also eliminates hard rock music. And this he does not foresee. But not only does society have a problem with its music, the churches are inviting Satan into the services by catering to his music!
Church music should lift the soul and the spirit; it should never excite the flesh. Flesh is flesh, whether it is in a cathedral or a cave; and when we make the slightest concession toward it, we are inviting more trouble than we can handle. But such is the subtility of Satan.
2 Cor. 11:13: “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”
Truly the stage is already being set for the last act in the Church Age. Who knows how soon the curtain will rise?
THE REIGN OF THE BEAST
In thinking about the coming world ruler known as The Antichrist, the question arises as to what kind of person he will be. Will he be wicked? Will he be religious? Will he be able to relate to all classes of people? Will he be a military strategist? Will he be intellectual?
The Bible answers all these questions and more.
I. HE WILL BE A CUNNING, CALCULATING INTELLECTUAL.
Dan.7:7: “After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured, and break in pieces, and stamped the residue (i.e. of the beasts before it) with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. 8. And I considered the horns, and behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of a man.”
In the symbolic language of the Bible, “eyes” are used to symbolize wisdom and intelligence. This is further confirmed in:
Dan.8:23:”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 (emphasis mine) shall stand up.”
This coming “Super—Man” will possess the intellectual powers of man to a high degree, plus the cunningness of Satan. He will thus captivate the world’s scholars, astonish the leading scientists, and amaze the world’s thinkers.
Even now the world worships at the shrine of learning and intellectualism. Any time a psychologist or a psychiatrist speaks, the public hangs on to every word as though it were a god speaking! Psychology and psychiatry has become a “Sacred Cow” which nobody dares to question, lest he be branded as a dumb—cluck or a hick!
God’s Word has stern warnings concerning this very thing:
Prov.1:7: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
Prov.21:30: “There is no wisdom, nor understanding, nor counsel against the Lord.”
Jer.9:23: “Thus saith the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: 24. But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.”
I Cor.8:1:” Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.”
Intellectualism that is not balanced by the grace of God leads men into idolatry and sin. The coming “Super—Man” will take the whole world down the path of Satanic worship through the strength and influence of his warped and twisted intellectual powers.
II. HE WILL BE A CAPTIVATING ORATOR.
Dan.7:29: “Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse from all the others, exceeding dreadful, whose teeth were of iron, and his nails of brass; which devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with his feet; 30. And of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even of that horn which had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things (emphasis mine), whose look was more stout than his fellows.. .25. And he shall speak great words against the Most High. .
John confirms this characteristic of the Beast in
Rev.13:2: “And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion… 5. And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies.”
It should be noted that here will be another Satanic imitation of a Divine principle. God has chosen public preaching and mass evangelism as the primary method of spreading the good news of His saving grace (Mark 16:15; Luke 9:1,2,60; Rom.1:16; I Cor.1:21).
Satan will empower His “Super—Man” with super—natural intellectual ability, and enhance it with oratorical powers that will hold men and women spell-bound while he speaks. Thus from his mouth will pour forth a corrupt stream of sophisticated blasphemies. His voice will be rich and musical: his words will move, inspire, and captivate. And men will be persuaded to follow him to their eternal doom!
III. HE WILL BE A CLEVER POLITICAL ORGANIZER.
Dan.11:21:”And in his estate (Antiochus—The-Great) shall stand up a vile person (Antiochus Epiphanes, youngest son of Antiochus-The- Great), to whom they shall not give the honor of the kingdom (he seized power.. . .he was not elected by popular vote..): but he shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries. .. .23. And after the league made with him, he shall work deceitfuly: for he shall come up, and shall become strong with a little (few) people.. .32. And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt with flatteries.”
Conservative students of Bible prophecy believe unanimously that Antiochus Epiphanes was a deliberate type of the coming “Super—Man.” The Beast will possess all the political cunningness of all the political geniuses of all times! His spirit is evident today. We have the best politicians today that money can buy! Unfortunately we have few — if any —statesmen left. The difference between a politician and a statesman is obvious: a statesman is concerned about the next generation; a politician is concerned about the next election!
IV. HE WILL BE A COMMERCIAL & FINANCIAL WIZARD.
Dan.8:25: “And through his policy shall he cause craft (A.F.L.. . .C.I.O. . .U.M.W.. .U.A.W. . .etc.) to prosper in his hand: and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace (Heb. “prosperity”) shall destroy many”
Rev. 13:6: “And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: 17. And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the number of the beast, or the number (666) of his name.”
Thus the “man of sin (lawlessness)” will stabilize and control the world’s financial and commercial structures, such as Labor Unions, Banks, Stock Markets, Investments and Loans, wage scales, wholesale, and retail prices. What awesome and unlimited power he will manifest!
Suppose that at this time, some mathematical wizard should suddenly appear, who could balance the budgets, stabilize the monetary structures of the nations (the American Dollar, the Russian Ruble, the British Pound Sterling, the new Israeli Shekel, the Swiss Franc, and the German Mark, etc….), and bring the world under one unified commercial organization. And suppose he could reverse the run—away— inflation which will characterize the first half of The Tribulation. And what if this man – energized by Satan –should also be a genius (as he will be!) in the fields of invention, manufacturing, and marketing. Would he not enjoy instant world—wide acceptance? Indeed he would!
Most of the world’s greatest inventions have appeared in just a little over the last one hundred years:
· Matches- 1827
· Electric Telegraph- 1835
· Sewing Machine- 1846
· Electric Locomotive 1851
· Typewriter – 1873
· Phonograph- 1877
· Incandescent Lamp- 1878
· Gasoline Engine— 1879
· Trolley Car— 1884
· Cash Register— 1845
· Radio- 1895
· Television— 1928
· Electronic Computer—?
· Airplane – 1903
V. HE WILL BE A CRAFTY MILITARY STRATEGIST.
Dan.8:24: “And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power (by Satanic power): and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and shall destroy the mighty, and the holy people (Jewish remnant).”
Soon after this man of sin comes to power, a great struggle for supremacy in the Middle East will break out. It will involve Russia, Egypt, Red China, and the forces of the beast himself:
Dan.11:38: “But in his estate shall he honor the god of forces: and a god whom his fathers knew not (Satan?) shall he honor with gold, and silver, and precious stones, and pleasant things. 39. Thus shall he do in the most strong holds with a strange god, whom he shall acknowledge, and increase with glory: and he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land (of Israel) for gain. 40. And at the time of the end (of the first half of The Tribulation) shall the king of the south (Egypt) push at him; and the king of the north (Russia and her satellite nations, indicating a military alliance between Egypt and Russia) shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, and with horsemen, and with many ships (in spite of the Salt II Treaty!); and he shall enter into the countries, and shall overflow, and pass over. 41. He shall enter also into the glorious land (Israel), and many (countries) shall be overthrown: but there shall escape out of his hand, even Edom (the “Rose Red City of Petra, half as old as time”), and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon (the Kingdom of Royal Trans-Jordan, Capital City: Amman; present ruler: Hussein). 42. He shall stretch forth his hand also upon the countries; and the land of Egypt shall not escape. 43. But he shall have power over the treasures of gold, and of silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt: and the Lybians and the Ethiopians shall be at his steps. 44. But tidings out of the East (the invasion of Israel by Red China?), and out of the North (the destruction of the Russian invaders upon the mountains of Israel — Eze. 38 and 39?), shall trouble him; therefore shall he go forth with great fury to destroy, and to take away many (as captives). 45. And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and none shall help him.”
Rev.13:7:”And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.”
This super man of Satan will accomplish through Satanic power, and through Divine permission, the world conquest that many other kings and would-be world dictators (Nebuchadnezzar, Alexander—The—Great, Nero, Napoleon, Kaiser Wilhelm, Mussolinni, Adolph Hitler, Ho Chi Min, Idi Amin,) have dreamed about; and for a time, it will seem that he is invincible. The prophet Daniel describes it this way:
Dan.7:19: “Then I would know the truth of the fourth beast, which was diverse from all the others, exceedingly dreadful, whose teeth were of iron, and his nails of brass; which devoured, brake in pieces, and stamped the residue (of the three previous kingdoms) with his feet; 20. And of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows. 21. I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints (the Jewish remnant), and prevailed against them ; 22. Until the Ancient of Days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the Most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom. 23. Thus he said, the fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth (emphasis mine), and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.”
The military power of the man of sin will be so great that he will be broken only by the Sovereign power of the returning Christ (2 Thess. 2:8; Rev. 19:11—21).
VI. HE WILL BE A CORRUPT, WICKED, UNGODLY REPROBATE.
Dan.11:36:”And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvelous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper until the indignation be accomplished; for that that is determined shall be done. 37. Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women (will he be a Sodomite?), nor regard any god: for he shall magnify himself above all.”
The writer firmly believes that the coming super—man of Satan will be a practicing, confessed Sodomite, because of the statement in Dan.11:37. The world is already being prepared for such a man. The liberal news media, in collaboration with the liberal legislators, and liberal medical scientists of the day is laboring constantly to make the “alternate life—style” of today’s Sodomites acceptable; so much so that, any objection to their disgusting sexual activities is quickly branded as “bigotry” and “prejudice”!
But the so-called “alternate life-style” of the Sodomites has plunged the whole world into a killing plague that promises to make all previous epidemics pale into insignificance! Medical doctors the world over are predicting that by the year 1990, millions of people will be dying of AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) for which we have the “Gay Community” to thank.
At the time of the writing of this paper, all the major TV Networks have announced (June 4, 1987) that the Homosexuals are angry because not enough is being done about this dread disease in the field of medical research. Therefore they are launching their own medical treatment by going to certain foreign countries to secure various drugs which have not been approved legally in the United States. They are bringing these drugs back to America, and treating themselves for AIDS. Moreover they are staging angry public demonstrations, which of course is being extensively covered by the liberal news media.
One of the most disturbing factors in all this is the fact that many of today’s medical doctors are themselves homo sexual! It makes one almost afraid to consult a physician for any illness.
Dr. Everett C. Koop, Surgeon General of the United States recently stirred up a hornet’s nest by going on national Television and suggesting that we should begin educating the public in the use of Prophylactics in order to halt the spread of AIDS.
But the greatest furor of all was caused by one TV preacher who dared to suggest that AIDS is a Divine retribution upon the homosexuals and the queers! Since that one brief skirmish, Television preachers have been strangely silent about this matter! (There is even an organization of “Gay Ministers”! Can you imagine that?)
It is most significant that today’s moral and spiritual corruption and chaos is touching every area of life. There is hardly a day in which some major scandal does not break out, in government, in business, and even in religion. The stage is being set to play out the awful days of The Tribulation, even before the Church has been taken out. True believers are beginning to “look up”, and to “lift up” their heads, knowing that our redemption is “drawing nigh!”
THE RETRIBUTION UPON THE BEAST
God’s Word is filled with warnings concerning the Divine wrath that will one day break upon the heads of the wicked. The patience of God is lasting, but it is not everlasting.
Isa.13:9:”Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and He shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it. 10. For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause her light to shine. 11. And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.
12. I will make a man more precious than fine gold; even a man than the golden wedge of Ophir. 13. Therefore I will shake the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place (orbit?), in the wrath of the Lord of hosts, and in the day of His fierce anger.”
The “Day of the Lord” is that coming period of time which will begin after the Rapture of The Church, when God resumes His redemptive work toward Israel. At the present time God is “taking out of the Gentiles a people for His Name” (Acts 15:14). When Christ returns for His Gentile Bride, God will turn again to Israel, the adulterous “wife” of Jehovah, and bring her back to the land which He promised to Abraham. Thus will begin “The Day of The Lord,” which will extend through The Tribulation.
The last half of The Tribulation will be so awful that “Except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake, those days shall be shortened.” The reign of the Antichrist will be brought to a sudden end by the return of Christ at the close of The Tribulation.
2 Thess.2:8: “And then shall that wicked (One) be reveiled, whom the Lord shall consume with the Spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming.”
Rev.19:11: “And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war. 12. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns; and He had a name written, that no man knew, but He Himself. 13. And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood; and His Name is called The Word Of God. 14. And the armies (of occupation) which were in heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 15. And out of His mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it He should smite the nations: and He shall rule them with a rod of iron: and He treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16. And He hath on His vesture and on His thigh a Name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
17. And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; 18. That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. 19. And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies gathered together to make war against Him that sat on the horse, and against His army. 20. And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone. 21. And the remnant were slain with the sword of Him that sat on the horse, which sword proceeded out of His mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.”
This passage is one of the most solemn and dreadful in all the Bible. It is a graphic description of the great Battle Of Armageddon, which will take place in the beautiful Valley Of Jezreel in north Israel. This will be the last battle fought on earth, until after the one thousand year Millennial Reign of Christ, when Satan will make a final attempt to overcome the Sovereign Jehovah (Rev.20: 7—10).
Daniel describes the Retribution upon the Antichrist as follows:
Dan.7:26 “But the judgment shall sit, and they shall take away his dominion, to consume and to destroy it unto the end. 27. And the kingdom, and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High, Whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him!”
“Satan’s Super Man” will walk across the Tribulation earth in seven league boots — until he runs head—on into the Son of Man! He will seek for, and accept, the worship of a world full of deluded people, until he actually comes to believe that he is God, because the greatest of all deceptions is self-deception. But in God’s own perfect time-table, the Antichrist will be destroyed.
In closing this paper, it would be well to consider briefly some of the contrasts between the Christ of God, and the Antichrist of the “god of this world”: In the person of Christ, God became man: in the person of Antichrist, a man will claim to be God. Jesus Christ was/is the Son of God: Antichrist will be “the son of perdition… Christ was “from above”: Antichrist will be from below.. . Jesus Christ came to do the will of His Father in heaven: Antichrist will do the will of his “father” in Hell.. Jesus Christ “knew no sin”: Antichrist will be “that wicked one”.
“All hail the power of Jesus’ Name:
Let angels prostrate fall.
Bring forth the royal diadem;
And crown Him Lord of all!”
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Printed by permission.
Morning Star Baptist Church
Fundamental Baptist Institute
Dr. Ronald D. Lesley Pastor
832 South Post Road
Shelby, NC 28152
 For a fuller discussion of the identity of the Restrainer the reader is referred to my Booklet The Great Elopement.