Revelation chapter 13 is part of what will occur after the opening of the seventh (7) seal of the book in heaven by the little-lamb which is representing the Lord Jesus Christ (Revelation 8:1). The seventh seal includes the implementation of judgments under seven trumpets (Revelation 8:7 – 14:20) including seven bowls as part of the seventh trumpet blowing (Revelation 15:1 – 18:24). The seventh trumpet with its seven bowls occur during the time of the great pressure of the completing together of the age – and will be followed by the Lord Jesus Christ’s return on earth as recorded in Revelation chapter 19.
Revelation chapters 12-14 contain prophecy regarding the past, the present, and the future providing additional details of events leading up to the return of the Lord Jesus Christ on earth (Revelation chapters 19 and 20).
The details written in Revelation 12:13 – 13:18 pertain to effects or events taking place on earth as a result-of and corresponding-to the previous events which took place in heaven (Revelation 12:1-12).
In Revelation 12:18 we read that the dragon was caused to stand on the sand of the sea (the seashore) and the continuation of the actions which the dragon carries out via his various methods – during the final 3 and a half years – is provided by John in Revelation chapter 13, with additional explanation given in Revelation 17:8-13.
13:1And I saw a wild-animal ascending out-from the sea having ten horns, and seven heads, and on its horns ten diadems, and on its heads names of blasphemy; .2and the wild-animal which I saw used-to-be like a leopard, and its feet as a bear, and its mouth as a mouth of a lion; and the dragon gave to it his ability and his throne and great authority; .3and one from its heads as having been slaughtered2 into death and the stroke of its death was attended-to; and the whole earth was marveled behind the wild-animal, .4and they worshipped the dragon because he gave the authority to the wild-animal, and they worshipped the wild-animal saying, “Who (is) like the wild-animal and who is able to war with it?”
And I (John) perceived (knew with my mind)…
- a wild-animal (a savage beast of prey which is not tamed by mankind; this is the same “beast” referred to in Revelation 11:7, 17:8 and 11)
- ascending (mounting, going or coming up)
- out from the sea (specifically it comes out from the abyss below the observed sea)
- ascending (mounting, going or coming up)
- having (it holds in its possession the combination of all the power, attributes, etc, of the following individual parts)
- ten horns (each one of the 10 connoting a radiance of strength and power to overcome plus courage in the face of attack; as the great fiery-red dragon in Revelation 12:3, also refer to Revelation 17:7 and 12),
- and seven heads (figuratively referring to its having 7 positions or functions of being the chief or principal part from which to enforce its instruction and directive; as the great fiery-red dragon in Revelation 12:3, also refer to Revelation 17:7-10),
- and on its horns ten diadems (10 bands or badges worn to display the position of dignity, royalty, and earthly dominion as kings or rulers; these diadems are worn on its horns instead of on its heads),
- and down on its heads names of blasphemy (to designate and describe its distinguishing and distinctive constitution, character, quality, workings, etc [some Greek texts have the singular word “name” as it being the same name on each of the heads] – these names relate to their intention and mark the point to be reached by these heads, they consist-of and therefore communicate blasphemy, calumniation, evil speech, the action of treating God and others with lack of Godly reverential-respect);
…and the wild-animal which I saw used to be (it was continuing to exist during a past time, historically) similar to…
- a leopard (refer to Daniel 7:6 representing the empire of Greece),
- and its feet as a bear (refer to Daniel 7:5 representing the empire of Medo-Persia),
- and its mouth as a mouth of a lion (refer to Daniel 7:4 representing the empire of Babylon);
…and the dragon gave to it (the old snake, the devil, satan; refer to Revelation 12:9; also refer to Daniel 7:24 – the dragon willingly presented or yielded the following from himself to the wild-animal so that it would also have)…
- his ability (able-power, capability)
- and his throne (the high seat which the devil/satan took for himself designating himself to be the king including all the regal authority associated with that position so as to pour out his directives)
- and great authority (large authoritative-power, permitted-right);
…and one from its heads (the 7th head) was in comparison to one that…
- was slaughtered (killed, slain) and evidence of slaughter was still there
- into death (with a view to, directed to, resulting in being dead)
- and the stroke of its death (the blow, strike, stripe as being hit by a lash which was the cause of death)
- was attended-to (was treated therapeutically, taken care of as necessary by the dragon);
…and the whole earth (people living in areas covering the entire earth)…
- was marveled (caused to be astonished, they looked on with wonder and amazement)
- behind (backwards, after) the wild-animal,
- and they worshipped the dragon (the people paid homage to the dragon, they were obeisant towards the devil/satan)
- because the dragon gave the authority to the wild-animal (as verse 2 above),
- and they worshipped the wild-animal saying,
- “Who is similar to the wild-animal
- and who is able to war with it (what person or spirit has the ability, able-power, capability to battle against it)?”
Even though these questions are uttered as a form of honor and worship by those who worship the wild-animal and will not war against it – the true answer is provided in Revelation 17:7-14 and 19:11-21.
In verse 3 above we have reference to 3 kingdoms. Daniel chapter 7 refers to a 4th kingdom (Daniel 7:7 and 19-25) because it goes from the 3rd kingdom directly to the 7 years of “wrath” (corresponding to 5th kingdom of the feet with 10 toes made of iron and clay in Daniel 2:33, 34 and 41-44). The reign of the wild-animal is the last 3½ years which corresponds to Revelation 13:1-3 above.
During the last 3½ years prior to Christ’s coming on earth again, this wild-animal will continue to look as though it were a human-being promoting itself as a great political leader, but in fact it will be a product of the devil/satan taking the place of the human-being who will be the 7th head who will rise to power during the first 3 and a half years and will be killed. This wild-animal will seem to be a resurrected man but will be similar to the genetically deformed evil beings referred to in Genesis 6:1-7 and Jude 1:6 and 7.
We should also note that Daniel chapter 2 provides additional details from the time of the Babylonian captivity. Daniel 2:33 refers to 4th and 5th kingdoms. In that context the 4th kingdom refers to the Roman Empire (refer to Luke 2:1). The 5th kingdom refers to the coalition with Israel/Judah during the 7 years (refer to Luke 21:24) prior to the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ who is the true resurrected man. The Lord Jesus Christ will rule on earth for 1,000 years during the 6th kingdom. The final 7th kingdom will begin as recorded in Revelation chapters 21 and 22.
[Reference: Daniel chapters 2 and 7, 9:27; Matthew 4:8-10, 12:31; I Thessalonians 5:3; II Thessalonians 2:3-12; Revelation 2:13, 9:20 and 21, 11:7, 12:3 and 9; 16:10, 17:7-14, 19:11-21. Note: verbs with a superscript 2 (2) immediately following them indicate the “perfect” tense – details are provided in the “Relevant Notes” link of this study.]
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