THE IMAGE OF THE BEAST
The light we have received upon the third angel's message is the true light. The mark of the beast is exactly what it has been proclaimed to be. Not all in regard to this matter is yet understood, nor will it be understood until the unrolling of the scroll; but a most solemn work is to be accomplished in our world." Testimonies, Vol. 6, p. 17.
"New light will ever be revealed on the word of God to him who is in living connection with the Sun of Righteousness. Let no one come to the conclusion that there is no more truth to be revealed. The diligent, prayerful seeker for truth will find precious rays of light yet to shine forth from the word of God. MANY GEMS ARE YET SCATTERED that are to be gathered together to become the property of the remnant people of God.--Counsels on Sabbath School Work, p. 34. (1892.)." Counsels to Writers and Editors p. 35.
"Let us give more time to the study of the Bible. We do not understand the word as we should. The book of Revelation opens with an injunction to us to understand the instruction that it contains. "Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy," God declares, "and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand." When we as a people understand what this book means to us, THERE WILL BE SEEN AMONG US A GREAT REVIVAL. We do not understand fully the lessons that it teaches, notwithstanding the injunction given us to search and study it." Testimonies to Ministers p. 113.
The Image Of The Beast
"Christians should be preparing for what is soon to break upon the world as an OVERWHELMING SURPRISE, and this preparation they should make by diligently studying the word of God and striving to conform their lives to its precepts. The tremendous issues of eternity demand of us something besides an imaginary religion, a religion of words and forms, where truth is kept in the outer court. God calls for A REVIVAL AND A REFORMATION." Prophets and Kings p. 626.
"As we near the close of this world's history, the prophecies relating to the last days especially demand our study. The last book of the New Testament scriptures is full of truth that we need to understand." Christ's Object Lessons p. 133.
"The solemn messages that have been given in their order in the Revelation are to occupy the FIRST PLACE in the minds of GOD'S PEOPLE. Nothing else is to be allowed to engross our attention.
"The testimony of Christ, a testimony of the most solemn character, is to be borne to the world. All through the book of Revelation there are the most precious, elevating promises, and there are also WARNINGS OF THE MOST FEARFULLY SOLEMN IMPORT. Will not those who profess to have a knowledge of the truth read the testimony given to John by Christ? Here is no guesswork, no scientific deception. Here are the truths that concern our present and future welfare. What is the chaff to the wheat?" Testimonies, Vol. 8, p. 302. The fact that the book of Revelation was given to John by Christ Himself shows the importance Christ attached to this last book of the New Testament.
"Only those who have been diligent students of the Scriptures and who have received the love of the truth will be shielded from the powerful delusion that takes the world captive. By the Bible testimony these will detect the deceiver in his disguise. To ALL the testing time will come. By the sifting of temptation the genuine Christian will be revealed. Are the people of God now so firmly established upon His word that they would not yield to the evidence of their SENSES? Would they, in such a crisis, cling to the Bible and the Bible only?" Great Controversy p. 625.
Let us follow the admonition as herein outlined in the Spirit of Prophecy and turn to the last book of the New Testament to see what the future holds for those who are living just prior to the second advent.
As our subject in this booklet is concerning the IMAGE OF THE BEAST, the first question we must ask ourselves is: What is an Image? The dictionary gives this definition: "A likeness-or imitation."
Our next question would logically be: An imitation or likeness of what?
The Scriptures tell us that the last people that live upon this earth just prior to the second coming of Christ will go through an experience very similar to what God's people went through during the dark ages, a spirit of intolerance and persecution. See: Great Controversy pp. 49-60; Dan. 7:7,23,25; 8:11,12, 24,25.
The Scriptures in symbolic language describe it in this way: "And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed." Rev. 13:11-15.
Here we are plainly told that the two-horned beast (U.S.A., see Great Controversy p. 440) will engineer a world-wide governmental system re-enthroning the principles of the church-state rule of Ecclesiastical Rome which was represented by the Leopard-like beast in its pre-wounded stage.
"History will be repeated. False religion will be exalted. The first day of the week, a common working day, possessing no sanctity whatever, will be set up as was the image at Babylon. All nations and tongues and peoples will be commanded to worship this spurious sabbath. This is Satan's plan to make of no account the day instituted by God, and given to the world as a memorial of creation.
"The decree enforcing the worship of this day is to go forth to all the world." 7 Bible Commentary p. 976, E.G. White Comments.
"As America, the land of religious liberty, shall unite with the papacy in forcing the conscience and compelling men to honor the false sabbath, the people of every country on the globe will be led to follow her example." Testimonies, Vol. 6, p. 18.
"Foreign nations will follow the example of the United States. Though she leads out, yet the same crisis will come upon our people in all parts of the world." Testimonies, Vol . 6, p. 395.
"Nations will be stirred to their very center. Support will be withdrawn from those who proclaim God's only standard of righteousness, the only sure test of character. And all who will not bow to the decree of the NATIONAL councils and obey the NATIONAL laws to exalt the sabbath instituted by the man of sin, to the disregard of God's holy day, will feel, not the oppressive power of popery alone, but of the PROTESTANT WORLD, the image of the beast." 2 Selected Messages p. 380.
Notice that the Sunday laws are to be FIRST, NATIONAL, then later they will become INTERNATIONAL. Notice also that PROTESTANTISM IS CALLED "THE IMAGE OF THE BEAST."
"The people of the United States have been a favored people; but when they restrict religious liberty, surrender Protestantism, and give countenance to popery, the measure of their guilt will be full, and "NATIONAL APOSTASY" will be registered in the books of heaven. The result of this apostasy will be NATIONAL ruin." Review & Herald May 2, 1893.
"And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship THE BEAST AND HIS IMAGE, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name." Rev. 14:9-11.
"The Spirit of Prophecy in commenting on these verses says: "The most fearful threatening ever addressed to mortals is contained in the third angel's message. That must be a terrible sin which calls down the wrath of God unmingled with mercy. Men are not to be left in darkness concerning this important matter; the warning against this sin is to be given to the world BEFORE THE VISITATION OF GOD'S JUDGMENTS, that all may know why they are to be inflicted, and have opportunity to escape them. Great Controversy pp. 450.
"...And it is not until the issue is thus plainly set before the people, and they are brought to choose between the commandments of God and the commandments of men, that those who continue in transgression will receive "THE MARK OF THE BEAST."' Great Controversy pp. 449.
"When God sends to men warnings so important that they are represented as proclaimed by holy angels flying in the midst of heaven, He requires every person endowed with reasoning powers to heed the message. The fearful judgments denounced against the worship of the BEAST AND HIS IMAGE (Revelation 14:9-11), should lead all to a diligent study of the prophecies to learn what the MARK OF THE BEAST IS, and how they are to avoid receiving it. But the masses of the people turn away their ears from hearing the truth and are turned unto fables." Great Controversy p. 594.
"ALREADY PREPARATIONS ARE ADVANCING, and movements are in progress, which will result in making an IMAGE TO THE BEAST. Events will be brought about in the earth's history that will fulfill the predictions of prophecy for these last days (RH April 23, 1889)." 7 Bible Commentary p. 976, E.G. White Comments.
"The light we have received upon the third angel's message is the true light. The mark of the beast is exactly what it has been proclaimed to be. NOT ALL IN REGARD TO THIS MATTER IS YET UNDERSTOOD, nor will it be understood until the unrolling of the scroll; but a most solemn work is to be accomplished in our world." Testimonies, Vol. 6, p. 17
Let us now turn to the "more sure word of prophecy" and sink the shaft deep into the mine of God's Word to find out all we can regarding the IMAGE that the two-horn beast is to bring into being.
A Scarlet-Coloured Beast.
"And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters: With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns." Rev. 17:1-3.
Since the "scarlet colored" is the last in the symbolical procession of beasts, he must possess all the characteristics of his ancestors. The ten horns of the nondescript beast, the seven heads of the leopard-like, and his own unharmed heads, show that he comes on the stage of action after the deadly wound on the leopard-like beast was healed. His Scarlet color denotes curse, as it does on the dragon (devil), in Rev. 12:3, and the words, "GO INTO PERDITION, " (Rev. 17:11), reveal that he is to bring this world to an end by a curse that will result in "entire ruin; utter destruction; future misery or eternal death."---Standard Dictionary.
Therefore, if this beast represents our world at the present time, would it not be unwise on the part of God, if He should have neglected to foresee the present day multiplicity of sects, and the great confusion among Christendom, if the symbols by this beast fail to reveal the true condition of the churches? As the non-descript beast tells the fall of the church in the period he represents, so must the scarlet colored. In fact, this is the principal reason why these prophetic beasts are presented.
The scarlet colored beast is the last symbolical beast in the continuous chain of historical events. This beast does not arise from the sea like the beasts before it, but was seen in the wilderness. Therefore, the scarlet colored beast is created by an HISTORICAL INCIDENT unlike the beasts before it. The symbol denotes that it is not strife and wars between the nations that brings this beast upon the stage of action, but rather a principle that is the opposite of the symbol-troubled sea. The wilderness could also be termed--"the Gentile world," that part of the world where ancient Israel was scattered. (See Ezek. 4:13, Rev. 12:6,14.) The wilderness would be opposite of the vineyard, the place where God's people will dwell. Isa. 5:7.)
He has ten horns and seven heads, the same as the leopard-like beast of Rev. 13:1-3. The only difference between the heads of the two beasts is the deadly wound on the leopard-like. As his "wound was healed, " it is evident that the "scarlet colored" is a CONTINUATION OF THE "LEOPARD-LIKE." Says John, "And his deadly wound was healed." Rev. 13:3.
Thus the scarlet colored beast has seven unharmed heads. The seven heads represent Christendom as they do on the leopard-like beast, but it is in the symbol of the scarlet colored, that they are called Babylon. The Seventh-Day Adventist church is not included in these seven heads as it is on the leopard-like beast as our church at that time will have been purified and has no part with the churches that federate under the jurisdiction of Babylon the Great.
On the leopard-like beast "blasphemy" is written over the seven heads (churches) only, but on the scarlet colored beast, his whole body is full of names of blasphemies. To blaspheme is for one to speak lightly of God, to work hypocrisy, to profess to be something other than what one actually is. Inspiration's own definition is this: "...I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan." Rev. 2:9. Since the scarlet colored beast is full of names and blasphemy, it verifies the fact that he represents an exceeding sinful period. "Full of names," implies a period of great multiplicity of so called Christian sects; "and blasphemy," because of rejecting present truth, (refusing to be corrected) and yet dare to call themselves by the name of Christ (Christians). "And in that day seven women" (all apostate Christendom) "shall take hold of one man," (Christ) "saying, We will eat our own bread" ("teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." Matt. 15:9) "and wear our own apparel:" (their own self-righteousness) "only let us be called by thy name," (Christian) "to take away our reproach." Isa. 4:1.
The "ten" horns denote the same as on the beasts before it, meaning a UNIVERSAL SYSTEM. If the heads of the leopard-like beast represent religious organizations, then the scarlet colored beast embraces the entire present civilization, both civil and religious (horns and heads). When the crowns appear on the heads (churches), it denotes a religio-political system. But if they appear on the horns (civil powers), it reveals that the state is independent of the church, that the authority is invested in the civil powers.
Horns, Heads, and Crowns.
It will be noticed that the scarlet colored beast is crownless, as the NON-DESCRIPT of Daniel 7:7,8. The ten horns in the first stage of the non-descript beast, representing imperial Rome, had no crowns because they had received no kingdom as yet. They received their crowns in the period of the leopard-like beast. But in the second stage of the non-descript beast (after the fall of imperial Rome), they would have been crowned, except for the fact that the "little horn" having the "eyes of a man and a mouth speaking great things" (a combination of a horn-head-union of church and state-the papacy) was supreme, therefore the horns could have no crowns, showing the papacy was to rule over kings. The scarlet colored beast is also controlled by the woman riding on his back (church and state). Thus it denotes that she is the authority, or the crown, for she rules the beast. This is one of the reasons why the crowns are absent on this beast. THE SCARLET COLORED BEAST IS AN IMAGE OF THE LEOPARD-LIKE (in his pre-wounded stage), verifying the fact that the scarlet colored beast represents the "image of the beast" period, fulfilling Revelation 13:12, 15: "And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast whose deadly wound was healed. And he had power to GIVE LIFE UNTO THE IMAGE OF THE BEAST, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed." The difference between the two drastic systems is revealed by the two symbols (horn-head on the one, and the woman riding the beast on the other).
The non-descript beast has only one "horn-head"---a symbol of a MONO-SECTARIAN SYSTEM by alliance of civil power with religious creed. But the scarlet colored beast has seven heads, which denote a MULTI-SECTARIAN combination under a supreme religio-political jurisdiction (the woman). He represents our world at its end, with its sovereign authority and theoretical theology under the dominion of the "woman."
The period represented by the scarlet colored beast, commenced in 1929, at which time the deadly wound was healed. It is generally accepted and understood among Seventh-day Adventists that the prophecy concerning the healing of the wound was fulfilled by the event which took place on the 11th day of Feb. 1929, when the Italian government granted civil power to the pope. But the scarlet colored beast's career is NOT FULLY DEVELOPED UNTIL THE "WOMAN" SHALL SIT UPON HIS BACK.
The commencement of that act will be marked when the following prediction is fully realized: "When Protestantism shall stretch her hand across the gulf to grasp the hand of the Roman power, when she shall reach over the abyss to clasp hands with spiritualism, when, under the influence of this THREEFOLD UNION, our country shall repudiate every principle of its Constitution as a Protestant and republican government, and shall make provision for the propagation of papal falsehoods and delusions, then we may know that the time has come for the marvelous working of Satan and that the end is near." Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 451.
Now we shall continue on with the 17th chapter of Revelation: "And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication: And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration." Rev. 17:4-6.
Notice the difference between the inscription on the forehead of Babylon the Great compared to the inscription on the foreheads of the 144,000. "The 144,000 were all sealed and perfectly united. On their foreheads was written, GOD, NEW JERUSALEM, and a star containing Jesus new name." Early Writings p. 15. At the time when the Image of the Beast is first set up, the 144,000, the remnant, will be God's purified church. Babylon the Great typifies the counterfeit.
This woman does not symbolize something new, but something as old as the time of the martyrs, for she is the cause of their slaying. What could she be but a COUNTERFEIT RELIGION which originated with Cain's unacceptable sacrifice. Since then she has brought forth sectarianism, has become a mother of harlots. Her abominations, you note, are made very attractive, being dispensed from a golden cup held in hands that are gorgeously decked with the costliest things of earth.
The Spirit of Prophecy warned us years ago concerning a COUNTERFEIt that is to come, JUST BEFORE THE LOUD CRY: "Before the final visitation of God's judgments upon the earth there will be among the people of the Lord such a REVIVAL OF PRIMITIVE GODLINESS as has not been witnessed since apostolic times. The Spirit and power of God will be poured out upon His children. At that time many will separate themselves from those churches in which the love of this world has supplanted love for God and His word. Many, both of ministers and people, will gladly accept those great truths which God has caused to be proclaimed at this time to prepare a people for the Lord's second coming. The enemy of souls desires to hinder this work; and before the time for such a movement shall come, he will endeavor to prevent it by introducing a COUNTERFEIT. In those churches which he can bring under his deceptive power" (those churches federated under Babylon the Great), "he will make it appear that God's special blessing is poured out; there will be manifest what is thought to be great religious interest. Multitudes will exult that God is working marvelously for them, when the work is that of another spirit. Under a religious guise, Satan will seek to extend his influence over the Christian world." Great Controversy p. 464. (Statements within brackets ours.)
"Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." Matt. 7:22, 23.
"I saw that God has honest children among the nominal Adventists" (First-day Adventists-see appendix of Early Writinas p. 299) "and the fallen churches, and before the plagues shall be poured out, MINISTERS AND PEOPLE will be called out from these churches and will gladly receive the truth. Satan knows this; and before the loud cry of the third angel is given, he RAISES AN EXCITEMENT IN THESE RELIGIOUS BODIES, that those who have rejected the truth may think that God is with them. He hopes to deceive the honest and lead them to think that God is still working for the churches. But the light will shine, and all who are honest will leave the fallen churches, and take their stand with the remnant." Early Writings p. 261.
The Beast that was--Is Not--And Yet Is.
"And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns. The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold THE BEAST THAT WAS, AND IS NOT, AND YET IS." Rev. 17:7,8.
Since those who have no part in the first resurrection (all the unrepentant sinners from the beginning of the world to the millennium), are to be resurrected after the 1,000 years, they will then positively discover that their names were not written "in the Book of Life,"---no, not one of them, even from the foundation of the world. The truth thus stands out clearly that then only will they behold the beast in its three phases ("that was, and is not, and yet is"); that is, he "was BEFORE THE MILLENNIUM; "and is not" DURING THE MILLENNIUM; "and yet is" AFTER THE MILLENNIUM.
He "is not" during the 1,000 years because at the commencement of the 1,000 years, the beast and the false prophet are "cast into the lake of fire, " then the "remnant," all the rest who come not out of Babylon's domain, are "slain with the sword" of the "King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, " (Rev. 19: 14. 21,16) at Christ's second coming.
To SUMMARIZE, having lived before the MILLENNIUM, and also after the MILLENNIUM, and being dead during the Millennium, the beast is seen in three phases, in three periods: the PRE-MILLENNIAL in which he "was," the MILLENNIAL in which "he is not" and POST-MILLENNIAL, in which he "is."
He "shall ascend out of the bottomless pit" (out of the pit, in which Satan himself is to be bound for 1,000 years), and then "go into perdition" (Rev. 17:8); that is, he will shortly be put to his second death from which there is no resurrection.
"The Seven Heads Are Seven Mountains."
"And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The SEVEN HEADS ARE SEVEN MOUNTAINS, on which the woman sitteth." Rev. 17:9.
It has been previously explained that the seven heads are symbols of so-called Christian denominations, and as she SITS ON THEM ALL, it denotes a UNION OF CHURCHES under one head---"the woman." The Biblical number "seven" apprehends all such apostate organizations. In booklet #6, we found that a mountain in symbolic prophecy represents a church. The fact that there are seven mountains (churches) "on which the woman sitteth, " clearly depicts the time when all the apostate churches shall be federated under the jurisdiction of Babylon the Great.
If all the churches at this present time were led by the Holy Spirit there would be no confusion among the so-called Christian sects. As it would be impossible for all to be right while no two believe alike, it is warrantable to say that those who are drinking the wine from the "cup of her fornication," are not a few, for Inspiration says: "And the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication." Rev. 17:2.
"And there are SEVEN kings: FIVE are fallen, and ONE is, and the OTHER is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space." Rev. 17:10.
The statement "and there are seven kings," shows that these kings are not in the symbolism of the scarlet colored beast; that is, they-are not the ten horns, nor are the-seven heads. All the horns and the heads are present on the beast, whereas the "SEVEN KINGS" are not there symbolized--five are fallen, one is, and the other is yet to come.
We must fully realize that God through this symbolism summarizes the history of the entire world, for the beast, as we said before, is symbolical not only of the pre-millennial world but also of the post-millennial wicked world.
The "king," that "is," must be the one in existence at this PRESENT TIME, and the one that is "NOT YET COME," must be in the future. Consequently, the FIVE that are "FALLEN," MUST BE IN THE PAST. This would be the only fair position for one to take without doing injury to the Holy Word of God. As it has reference to the entire world's history under sin, we must consider the number of Universal Empires, or periods, since the world began. There is one before the flood, as previously explained; the second is Babylon; the third, Medo-Persia; fourth, Grecia; and the fifth is the Roman monarchy. These five are fallen. The one that "is," is the present civilization since the fall of Rome under the symbol of the "leopard-like" and the "scarlet colored" beasts, to the commencement of the millennium, which period is termed Rome in her broken state, represented by the feet and toes of the great image of Daniel 2.
The period represented by the SCARLET COLORED BEAST COMMENCED IN 1929, at which time the deadly wound was healed. But his career is not fully developed until the "woman" shall sit upon his back. These are the six kings. "Five are fallen" and the one "is" The OTHER that is "not yet come," must be the PERIOD AFTER THE MILLENNIUM, corresponding with the beast that is to ascend from the bottomless pit.
It is wonderful to note how God has portrayed our world's history with such perfect symbols wing numbers of completeness in each instance. Thus His divine plan, rule and guide for His people, is revealed from generation to generation. Speaking of the SEVENTH KING, the one after the millennium, the text says "When he cometh, he must continue a SHORT SPACE," corresponding with that of Revelation 20:3, "And after that he (Satan) must be loosed a little season." Thus we can clearly see that the "Short Space" and "A LITTLE SEASON" are speaking of the same period of time.
The Eighth Is Of The Seven.
"And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition." Rev.17:11.
To unmask the apparent mystery, all that is necessary, is TO COUNT THE PROPHETIC BEASTS REPRESENTING PERIODS and nations. Beginning with the first beast and as we close with the last, he must be "the eighth" and "yet of the seven." The LION (Babylon) is the FIRST; the Bear (Medo-Persia) is the SECOND; the four-headed Leopard (Grecia) is the THIRD; the Non-Descript (Rome) is the FOURTH; the Leopard-Like (from the fall of Rome to 1929) is the FIFTH; the one with the Lamb-Like horns (United States) is the SIXTH; the scarlet colored (from 1929 to the end of this present world) is the SEVENTH; the same "scarlet colored" that shall ascend from the bottomless pit and go into perdition (from the resurrection of the wicked to their second death), is the eight: "And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition. " He is the "EIGHTH," but is "of the seven," because "he was and is not, and yet is." That is, the scarlet colored beast appears on the stage of action the SECOND TIME (first, prior to the millennium and second, after the millennium by the second resurrection). Therefore, he is the EIGHTH, but is of the SEVEN:
"And goeth into perdition" (the second death of the wicked). Simple as it is, yet most perfect, it tells the truth and corrects error. Here we see another set of numbers including the entire chain of beasts. THE RED DRAGON in Revelation 12:3, cannot be numbered with the numerous beasts for he is not a symbol of a particular nation or government. He represents Satan and his schemes at certain times, for he is "called the Devil, and Satan." Rev. 12:9.
Ten Kings With No Kingdom.
"And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have RECEIVED NO KINGDOM AS YET; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These HAVE ONE MIND, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful. . . .And the TEN HORNS which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and BURN HER WITH FIRE. For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled." Rev. 17:12-14,16,17.
Now the fact that the horns have no kingdom as yet, while the woman rides the beast, also the fact that the woman rides it, rules it, is evidence enough that the world is next to be ruled by an ECCLESIASTICAL BODY, NOT PURELY BY DEMOCRACY OR BY COMMUNISM.
That the woman riding the beast symbolizes the world in this day and age is evident from the fact that the TEN HORNS, the civil powers that be during the reign of Babylon, hate the woman, the church. Communism being the only world-wide ruling power since the world began to hate religion, the Church, is itself solid proof that the ten horns are symbolical of COMMUNISM, and that the beast represents a period of time in which communism is about to dominate the world's seat of government. God is nevertheless to intercept by putting it in their hearts to "give their power and strength unto the beast," "and to give their kingdom unto the beast, until the word of God is fulfilled," (gospel finished).
Ten Horns Of the Scarlet Colored Beast Destroy the Woman.
Thus they receive power one symbolical hour (from the 11th to the 12th) with the beast, they themselves not having a kingdom of their own. And in the end of the "hour" they "make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire." Rev. 17:16. From this we see that Communism will double-cross this ecclesiastical power after the one hour. Thus at length they shall unseat her forever, and the system which she symbolizes, the "image of the beast," SHALL BE DEMOLISHED. At this resounding crash of Babylon, "the kings of the earth...shall bewail her, and lament for her...standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas that great city Babylon, that mighty city!" Rev. 18:9, 10.
The Ten Horns Of the Leopard-Like Beast Mourn Over Babylon.
The lamentation of the "kings" shows that they are sympathetic toward her, while the horns on the scarlet colored beast hate her. The "kings," therefore, cannot be those who are symbolized by the beast's crownless horns, but rather those who are symbolized by the crowned horns of the Leopard-Like beast. They are the crowned kings who arose after the fall of Pagan Rome, and who are now speedily going into exile.
The Woman Riding On The "Beast," "Heads" and "Waters."
"And he saith unto me, The WATERS which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues." Rev. 17:15.
It is interesting to note that the woman sits on the "waters," also on the "heads," and on the "beast." See Revelation 17:1,3,9. As it would be impossible for one person to sit on all three objects at one time, the prophetic symbols reveal A SPIRITUAL FRAUD IN THREE DIFFERENT PERIODS. Thus John declares: "I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast." Not upon the "waters," nor upon the "heads." It was the angel also who added, "The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman SITTETH." (See verses 1,9.) Thus, John saw her last exploit only (sit upon the beast). Consequently, the symbol, sitting on the "WATERS" is her FIRST ACT, according to the vision.
Therefore, her first achievement ("sitting on the waters") must have been in the past, from the time the prophetic symbol is revealed. Hence, the sitting on the HEADS becomes her SECOND accomplishment, and the sitting on the beast is the LAST; at which time she is judged.
As the Protestant churches are represented by the heads, she could not have sat on them before the reformation, for they were not as yet in existence. As the heads upon which the "woman sits" are unharmed, it is evident that the prophetic symbol is to meet its fulfillment some time after the deadly wound of the leopard-like beast of Rev. 13:3 is healed. The symbol, sitting on the heads, denotes union of churches, for she sits on them.
Therefore, when CATHOLICISM, PROTESTANTISM, AND SPIRITUALISM, clasp each other's hand by the medium of a league, then it can be said, "the woman sitteth on the HEADS."
The symbol of the "woman sitting on the BEAST," will meet its fulfillment when that RELIGIOUS FEDERATION shall make an alliance with the powers of the world. Such an act would give the woman full control of the entire beast, horns and heads---the world. At that time the following Scripture will meet its perfect fulfillment: "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: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast." Rev. 13:16,17.
Thus the symbol of the "woman" sitting on the "waters, " REPRESENTS THE PERIOD BEFORE THE REFORMATION. This was true during the period of PAPAL SUPREMACY, for at that time the papacy ruled the Roman world-- "peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues." Thus the "woman" sat on the "waters" DURING THE 1,260 PROPHETIC YEARS OF DANIEL 7:25, but she is yet to sit on the "heads, " and on the "beast." Had she sat on the non-descript beast instead of on the "waters," it would have been an incorrect symbol, for the "woman, " by the tool of Catholicism, did not reign over all the world (beast), but over MANY "peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues" (many waters). Therefore, the symbol, "sitting upon the scarlet coloured beast," denotes AN INTERNATIONAL RELIGO-POLITICAL SYSTEM.
How long has the Woman been in Existence?
This question may be answered by the following Scriptures: "And I saw the woman drunk with the blood of saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of JESUS: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration." Rev. 17:6. This could truly be said of the Roman church, for, she persecuted the Christians and martyred them. Therefore, she is "drunk" with their blood. True, the Roman church has had unlawful connection with the "woman,"; WAS, and IS drunk with the wine of her fornication.
The "woman" did not originate with the Roman church, but rather SHE PRODUCED that church. Therefore, we must trace her existence beyond the beginning of the papacy. Revelation 18:24, throws light upon the subject: "And in her was FOUND THE BLOOD OF THE PROPHETS, and of the SAINTS, and of all that were slain UPON THE EARTH." The Holy Word of God declares that the "woman" is guilty of the blood of the martyrs in all ages. As previously stated before, the "woman" is drunk with the blood of ABEL, and thus the blood of "all" the martyrs is found in her; proving that Cain was her first client by presenting a counterfeit sacrifice (false doctrine), and by slaying his brother. "The solemn events which are now taking place belong to a series of events in the chain of history, the first link of which is connected with Eden." 7 Bible Commentary, p. 985, E.G. White Comments.
A Mother and Her Seven Daughters
"And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH." Rev. 17:5. The woman riding on the beast is the MOTHER. The SEVEN heads on the beast are the symbols of her DAUGHTERS (Harlots). Catholicism is her first daughter in this symbol, and as Protestantism sprang from Catholicism, then apostate Protestantism in the multiplicity of sects, are her daughters also. Or it may be said, the "woman" is the mother of Catholicism, and Catholicism is the mother of Protestantism. Says the Revelator: "I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, FULL OF NAMES OF BLASPHEMY." Rev. 17:3. Thus the number of "Heads," and "FULL OF NAMES," include all the offshoots from PROTESTANTISM AND CATHOLICISM. Had there been no mention made of being "FULL OF NAMES," more-than seven, and "scarlet," skimmed-under curse ready to perish, the Biblical number "seven heads," would have included those who are carrying God's message as in the period of the leopard-like beast of Revelation 13:1, at the time his deadly wound was healed. Therefore, it would have made no allowance for the church which "KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS OF GOD, and the FAITH OF JESUS," and thus it would have contradicted the following Scripture: "And the dragon was wroth with the woman (God's church), and went to make war with the remnant of her seed (Israel the true-the 144,000), which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ." Rev. 12:17. During the Loud Cry the Great Multitude, the second fruits, become the remnant of her seed.
God has never had more than one movement in existence at a time and it could not be otherwise now, for CHRIST cannot be divided. See: 1 Cor. 1:13. God's church is well marked in every generation by obedience to present truth. The fact itself proves the claim true as there is only one church in the period of the beast which has the "Spirit of Prophecy" and all of the commandments as written by the finger of God. Said Jesus: "Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven." Matt. 5:19. It is this divine principle that shall divide the world into two classes---the commandments of God and the traditions of men. "And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left." Matt. 25:32,33.
During the Time of the Loud Cry.
The eighteenth chapter of Revelation is a continuation of the seventeenth, and so we shall study it also: "And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory." Rev. 18:1.
After what things? After the scarlet coloured beast comes into being and while the woman, Babylon, is sitting upon him,, It is then that the earth is to be lightened with the glory of the angel, with the MESSAGE OF THE HOUR. "The Lord has shown me clearly that the image of the beast will be formed before probation closes; for it is to be the great test for the people of God, by which their eternal destiny will be decided." 2 Selected Messages p. 81. The people of God referred to here are God's people who are still in Babylon. "And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd." John 10:16.
"And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, COME OUT OF HER, MY PEOPLE, THAT YE BE NOT PARTAKERS OF HER SINS, AND THAT YE RECEIVE NOT OF HER PLAGUES." Rev. 18:2-4.
A heavenly voice, the Spirit of Truth, is heard calling God's people out of Babylon after the earth is lightened with the glory of the angel. For God's people to come out so that they be not partakers of her sins and receive not of her plagues, they must necessarily be called into a place that is free from sin, and thus be saved from Babylon's plagues. Consequently they go into a PURIFIED, CLEAN CHURCH, and a place that is not in danger of the plagues. The Spirit of Prophecy in commenting on this says: "As God called the children of Israel out of Egypt, that THEY MIGHT KEEP HIS SABBATH, so He calls His people out of Babylon, that they may NOT WORSHIP THE BEAST OR HIS IMAGE." 7 Bible Commentary p. 984, E.G. White Comments.
"The Psalmist tell us why God delivered Israel from Egypt: "He brought forth His people with joy and His chosen with gladness: and gave them the lands of the heathen: and they inherited the labor of the people; that they might observe his statutes, and keep His laws." Psalm 105: 43-45. HERE WE LEARN THAT THE HEBREWS COULD NOT SERVE GOD IN EGYPT.
"From these facts we may conclude that the Sabbath was on of the things in which they could not serve the Lord in Egypt;..." Patriarchs and Prophets p. 757 (Appendix) Would the Lord do any less for His people today? Just as the Hebrews could not keep God's Sabbath while in Egypt, neither will His people during the reign of Babylon the Great be able to serve Him without LEAVING BABYLON'S DOMAIN, and thus escape her plagues.
Speaking of God's people who come out of Babylon during the Loud Cry, the Lord makes this promise: "Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation; There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling. For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways." Psalms 91: 9-11.
"The 'time of trouble, such as never was,' is soon to open upon us; and we shall need an experience which we do not now possess and which many are too indolent to obtain. It is often the case that trouble is greater in anticipation than in reality; BUT THIS IS NOT TRUE OF THE CRISIS BEFORE US. The most vivid presentation cannot reach the magnitude of the ordeal. In that time of trial, every soul must stand for himself before God. 'Though Noah, Daniel, and Job' were in the land, 'as I live, saith the Lord God, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.' Ezekiel 14:20.." Great Controversy p. 622.
"The wrath of Satan increases as his time grows short, and his work of deceit and destruction will reach its culmination in the time of trouble." Great Controversy p. 623.
Satan reasons thus: "I will make the observance of the seventh day a sign of disloyalty to the authorities of earth. Human laws will be made so stringent that men and women will not dare to observe the seventh-day Sabbath. FOR FEAR OF WANTING FOOD AND CLOTHING, they will join with the world in transgressing God's law. The earth will be wholly under my dominion." Propheh and Kings p. 184.
"Soon God's people will be tested by fiery trials, and the GREAT PROPORTION of those who now appear to be genuine and true will prove to be base metal. INSTEAD OF BEING STRENGTHENED AND CONFIRMED BY OPPOSITION, THREATS, AND ABUSE, THEY WILL COWARDLY TAKE THE SIDE OF THE OPPOSERS. . . .
"...When the religion of Christ is most held in contempt, when His law is most despised, then should our zeal be the warmest and our courage and firmness the most unflinching. To stand in defense of truth and righteousness when the majority forsake us, to fight the battles of the Lord when champions are few--THIS WILL BE OUR TEST. At this time we must gather warmth from the coldness of others, courage from their cowardice, and loyalty from their treason. THE NATION WILL BE ON THE SIDE OF THE GREAT REBEL LEADER." Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 136.
God, The Defense of His People.
"If this land of boasted liberty is preparing to sacrifice every principle which enters into her Constitution, making decrees to suppress religious freedom, and for the enforcing of papal falsehood and delusion, then the people of God need to present their petitions in faith to the Most High. There is every encouragement, in the promises of God, for those who put their trust in Him. The prospect of being brought into personal danger and distress, need not cause despondency, but should QUICKEN THE VIGOR and hopes of God's people; for the time of their peril is the season for God to grant them clearer manifestations of His power." 2 Selected Messages p. 370.
"Fearful tests and trials await the people of God. The spirit of war is stirring the nations from one end of the earth to the other. But in the midst of the time of trouble that is coming,--a time of trouble such as has not been since there was a nation,--God's chosen PEOPLE WILL STAND UNMOVED. SATAN AND HIS HOST CANNOT DESTROY THEM, for ANGELS THAT EXCEL IN STRENGTH WILL PROTECT THEM." Testimonies, Vol. 9 p. 17.
"It is impossible to give any idea of the experience of the people of God who shall be alive upon the earth when celestial glory and a repetition of the persecutions of the past are blended. They will walk in the light proceeding from the throne of God. By means of the angels there will be CONSTANT COMMUNICATION BETWEEN HEAVEN AND EARTH." Testimonies, Vol. 9, p. 16.
"Satanic agencies in human form will take part in this last great conflict to oppose the building up of the kingdom of God. And heavenly angels in human guise will be on the field of action. The two opposing parties will continue to exist till the closing up of the last great chapter in this world's history. Satanic agencies are in every city. We cannot afford to be off our guard for one moment. The true, stanch believers will pray more and more, and will talk less of matters of little consequence. More and more decided testimonies will come from their lips to encourage the weak and the needy. This is no time for the people of God to be weaklings, neither one thing nor the other. Let all be diligent students of the Word. We must be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. We cannot live haphazard lives and be true Christians." 2 Selected Messages p. 383.
"In the time of confusion and trouble before us, a time of trouble such as has not been since there was a nation, the uplifted Saviour will be presented to the people in all lands, that all who look to Him in faith may live." Testimonies, Vol. 8, p. 50. "A TIME OF TROUBLE IS BEFORE US, and every honest soul who has not had the light of truth will then take a stand for Christ." Testimonies to Ministers p. 248.
"When the earth is lighted with the glory of the angel of Revelation eighteen, the religious elements, good and evil, will awake from slumber, and THE ARMIES OF THE LIVING GOD WILL TAKE THE FIELD." 7 Bible Commentary p. 983, E. G . White Comments.
"Servants of God, with their faces lighted up and shining with holy consecration, will hasten from place to place to proclaim the message from heaven. By thousands of voices, all over the earth, the warning will be given. Miracles will be wrought, the sick will be healed, and signs and wonders will follow the believers....
"The message will be carried not so much by argument as by the deep conviction of the Spirit of God. The arguments have been presented. The seed has been sown, and now it will spring up and bear fruit. The publications distributed by missionary workers have exerted their influence, yet many whose minds were impressed have been prevented from fully comprehending the truth or from yielding obedience. Now the rays of light penetrate everywhere, the truth is seen in its clearness, and the honest children of God sever the bands which have held them. Family connections, church relations, are powerless to stay them now. Truth is more precious than all besides. Notwithstanding the agencies combined against the truth, A LARGE NUMBER take their stand upon the Lord's side." Great Controversy p. 612.
Harvest is Past
"At the day of judgment there comes to the lost a full realization of the meaning of the sacrifice made on Calvary. They see what they have lost by refusing to be loyal. They think of the high, pure association it was their privilege to gain. But it is too late. The last call has been made. The wail is heard: 'The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.' Jeremiah 8:20." Testimonies, Vol. 7, p. 16.
"MINISTERS AND PEOPLE SEE THAT THEY HAVE NOT SUSTAINED THE RIGHT RELATION TO GOD. They see that they have rebelled against the Author of all just and righteous law. The setting aside of the divine precepts gave rise to thousands of springs of evil, discord, hatred, iniquity, until the earth became one vast field of strife, one sink of corruption. This is the view that now appears to those who rejected truth and chose to cherish error. No language can express the longing which the disobedient and disloyal feel for that which they have lost forever--eternal life. Men whom the world has worshiped for their talents and eloquence now see these things in their true light. They realize what they have forfeited by transgression, and they fall at the feet of those whose fidelity they have despised and derided, and confess that God has loved them.
"The people see that they have been deluded. They accuse one another of having led them to destruction; but all unite in heaping their bitterest condemnation upon the ministers. Unfaithful pastors have prophesied smooth things; they have led their hearers to make void the law of God and topersecute those who would keep it holy. Now, in their despair, these teachers confess before the world their work of deception. The multitudes are filled with fury. "We are lost!" they cry, "and you are the cause of our ruin;" and they turn upon the false shepherds. The very ones that once admired them most will pronounce the most dreadful curses upon them. The very hands that once crowned them with laurels will be raised for their destruction. The swords which were to slay God's people are now employed to destroy their enemies. Everywhere there is strife and bloodshed." Great Controversy pp. 655,656.
"For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double. How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow." Rev. 18:5-7.
She has rewarded God's people with evil, and now she is to be paid back double. She has boasted of ruling the world, and has said in her heart that she is not a "widow," that God is her husband, but she finds herself mistaken.
"Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her. And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning, Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come. And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more: The merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble, And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men." Rev. 18:8-13.
She has had everything put into her hands, and her hands put into everything, but now her glory comes to an end.
"And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all. The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, And saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls! For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off, And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What city is like unto this great city! And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas, that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! for in ONE HOUR IS SHE MADE DESOLATE." Rev.18:14-19. Such will be the fate of Babylon.
"Not one cloud has fallen upon the church that God has not prepared for; not one opposing force has risen to counterwork the work of God but He has foreseen. All has taken place as HE HAS PREDICTED THROUGH HIS PROPHETS. He has not left His church in darkness, forsaken, but has traced in prophetic declarations what would occur, and through His providence, acting in its appointed place in the world's history, He has brought about that which His Holy Spirit inspired the prophets to foretell. ALL HIS PURPOSES WILL BE FULFILLED AND ESTABLISHED. His law is linked with His throne, and satanic agencies combined with human agencies cannot destroy it. Truth is inspired and guarded by God; it will live, and will succeed, although it may appear at times to be overshadowed. The gospel of Christ is the law exemplified in character. The deceptions practiced against it, every device for vindicating falsehood, every error forged by satanic agencies, will eventually be eternally broken, and the triumph of truth will be like the appearing of the sun at noonday. The Sun of Righteousness shall shine forth with healing in His wings, and the whole earth shall be filled with His glory." 2 Selected Messages p
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