In Rev. 13:1-2 John reveals the true nature of the Beast. “Then I stood on the sand of the sea. And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name. Now the beast which I saw was like a leopard, his feet were like the feet of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. The dragon gave him his power, his throne, and great authority.”
By now you know that the Beast is a title used to describe the final 8th Gentile kingdom that comes against Israel. The seven heads represent the previous historical kingdoms that oppressed Israel: Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Greece, Rome, and the Islamic empire that culminated in the Ottoman Empire. The ten horns are leaders from the modern day Middle Eastern nations that want to destroy Israel.
The leader of this coalition is also called the Beast, along with his cohort known as the False Prophet. John, in his letters, called that leader the Antichrist because he denies the Father and the Son (1 John 2:22). Surprisingly, that title is never used in Revelation, but the Spirit-inspired connections confirm his identity. Paul called him the son of perdition, the lawless one, and the man of sin. Daniel called him the little horn.
John goes on to explain the power behind the Beast. He just so happens to be the serpent of old, the devil, the dragon—Satan himself. This unholy trinity is the mystery behind Gog of the land of Magog that Ezekiel describes. We learned from the prophet that Satan dwells in that area of Turkey, for his throne is in Pergamos (Rev. 2:13). He is the chief over the princes, the rulers of the darkness of this age, powers, principalities, and spiritual hosts of wickedness (Eph. 6:12).
Yes, Satan is the god of this world, but he is not on par with the King of kings and the Lord of lords. He is not omnipresent (present everywhere), he is not omnipotent (all-powerful), and he is not omniscient (knowing all). He is the prince of darkness, but he is no match for the Light of the world.
Paul tells us in 2 Thess. 2:9-10 that “the coming of the lawless one [the beastly man] will be according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.”
Yet in verse 8 Paul reveals the outcome of this final war: “the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.” Sound familiar? The purpose of the rapture is to gather Christ’s heirs together with Him as the heavenly court that is seated to execute the righteous judgments that consume and destroy the beastly armies.
In Revelation 19:20 we learn that the beastly Antichrist and the beastly False Prophet are captured and thrown into the Lake of Fire. The armies of the Beast are devoured at the Supper of the Great God. As for the power behind the throne, Satan is temporarily bound in the Pit of Hades for the rest of the 1,000-year reign of Christ. He is released at the end one last time to give the inhabitants of the earth one final choice—Christ the way, the truth, and the life, or Satan the father of lies, the murderer from the beginning.
Given where Satan dwells, it should not surprise us that he goes out “to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle.” He gathers another army that goes up against Jerusalem. “And fire came down from God out of Heaven and devoured them. The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the Lake of Fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet [already are]. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
When we make the Spirit-inspired connections, we see clearly what lies ahead. There is a war on the horizon. It begins with the revival of what was the Islamic Empire of old. It’s the most significant war that will ever take place with humanity.
We know when it will begin—just before God turns out the lights as this 6th Day ends and the Day of the Lord dawns. We know that during the war the beastly kingdom will turn on the Harlot of false religion that rides it. It will turn against all religion. We know it will eventually become World War III, as news from the north and east trouble the Antichrist. We know the heavenly court of Christ and His raptured Bride will unleash the trumpet and bowl judgments that consume and destroy the beastly aggressors. We know it will only last 3½ years and ends with the Supper of the Great God. This is the future history of the world. It’s already in the Book!