Recently I turned to one of my “Christian” radio stations and heard Dr. David Jeremiah reading from his fictional book, which, he told us, is based upon Revelation 13. I had missed the introduction that he would have usually given, and so I cannot inform you which book Dr. Jeremiah was reading from; a strong possibility could be “Agents of the Apocalypse: A Riveting Look at the Key Players of the End Times.” Since Dr. Jeremiah wrote this book also, and it speaks of the Antichrist, a key player in the apocalypse, then it would be a logical assumption.
Here is the problem; although he is reading a fictional story, he tells us that it is based on scripture. The immediate inclination, on the part of the naive, is to think that what he is saying is exactly the way this particular scenario will play out. Dr. Jeremiah, as I entered the radio program, was talking about a character, that in just a matter of minutes, is demonstrated to be the Antichrist.
I get it that most choose not to believe how gullible we are so I will give you a powerful example.
In 1938 Orson Welles produced and introduced a radio production of H.G. Wells novel “The War of the Worlds.” “The one-hour program began with the theme music for the Mercury Theater on the Air and an announcement that the evening’s show was an adaptation of The War of the Worlds. Orson Welles then read a prologue which was closely based on the opening of H.G. Wells’ novel but modified to place the story’s setting in 1939. The next half hour of the broadcast was presented as a typical evening of radio programming being interrupted by a series of news bulletins. The first few bulletins cut into a program of dance music and describe a series of odd explosions observed on Mars. The episode became famous for causing panic among its listening audience, though the scale of that panic is disputed, as the program had relatively few listeners. The program has become famous for supposedly tricking some of its listeners into believing that a Martian invasion was actually taking place. The illusion of realism was furthered because the Mercury Theater on the Air was a sustaining show without commercial interruptions, and the first break in the program came almost 30 minutes after the introduction. Popular legend holds that some of the radio audience may have been listening to The Chase and Sanborn Hour with Edgar Bergen and tuned in to “The War of the Worlds” during a musical interlude, thereby missing the clear introduction that the show was a drama; however, contemporary research suggests that this happened only in rare instances.:67–69
In the days after the adaptation, widespread outrage was expressed in the media. The program’s news-bulletin format was described as deceptive by some newspapers and public figures, leading to an outcry against the broadcasters and calls for regulation by the Federal Communications Commission. Nevertheless, the episode secured Welles’s fame as a dramatist.” (Sourced from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_War_of_the_Worlds_(radio_drama))
When I turned on Dr. Jeremiah’s radio program that day, he is introducing a character; based on the description, he easily could have been an Archbishop. Given permission to enter, the primary, fictitious characters office he steps forward and presents his case for a one world government and its one world religion. The person that we will soon understand to be the Antichrist responds with, excellent, as he refers to the Archbishop by name. I am glad you brought this up as it is something I feel strongly about; we need to talk about this more, but I must go ready myself for a critical, televised meeting. Hold your thought, and we will speak again about this matter. Within minutes of this meeting, the Antichrist character is shot in the head by an assassin. The doctors at the hospital declared him dead as there was no brain function and the Archbishop was called to the hospital room to say a prayer over the man. As the Archbishop begins to pray some standardized prayers over the deceased, the Antichrist character sits upright. Much to the surprise of everyone in the room the man who was dead only moments ago from an undeniable and severe head wound, now has no evidence of any injury to his head. With several short discussions, we find out that the plans are already in place to mark the citizens of the world in a manner that would cause all to be subject to this universal mark, and the “beast.”
While it makes for an exciting read, it is FICTION and must be looked at in that light alone.
Since Dr. Jeremiah informed his audience that the story is based in Revelation 13, then it behooves to study this out, and that is what we are going to do.
Revelation 13:1-2 NASB And the dragon stood on the sand of the seashore. Then I saw a beast coming up out of the sea, having ten horns and seven heads, and on his horns were ten diadems, and on his heads were blasphemous names. (2) And the beast which I saw was like a leopard, and his feet were like those of a bear, and his mouth like the mouth of a lion. And the dragon gave him his power and his throne and great authority.
Alright, in reading the first two verses, especially those which describe the beast, you should be asking, is there anything like this? The answer is a resounding NO unless the beast represents some other things.
Here is a massive clue for you, in attempting to “interpret” scripture, there is nothing new under the sun, and so you should be able to find comparable scriptures to help you understand. Do we have such a thing with this beast? YES!
Read Daniel 7: 1-8, and you will discover four kingdoms referred to as beasts; descriptions of the same animals that we see in Revelation 13, and the mention of horns and heads. The Jews gave considerable credence to prophetic patterns, and so should we.
In Revelation 13:3 we see one of the many heads sustain a head wound as though it had been killed.
Revelation 13:3 NASB I saw one of his heads as if it had been slain, and his fatal wound was healed. And the whole earth was amazed and followed after the beast;
As a child I can remember, while on the playground at school, learning that our, then President, John F. Kennedy, had been assassinated, shot in the head. It seemed that the entire religious world watched and waited for him to come back to life; not because they thought he was evil, but because he was so well liked. He did not come back from the dead, and so life went on, and everyone went back to looking for the next potential Antichrist.
Another consideration for us. Daniel is one of the leading players when it comes to understanding the scheme of things in Revelation 13.
In Daniel chapter two Nebuchadnezzar had a dream. Daniel not only told the king what the dream was, but he explained what it meant. Daniel spoke in a language that the king could understand; in other words, he did not get all religious and spout high church theology. Daniel started by saying, “that head of gold is you oh king.” Gold represents the noblest position, and although Nebuchadnezzar may not have been the noblest representative for God, he is undoubtedly a resounding message to us all, as this first kingdom was the Babylonian empire. If God’s Word is true and logical, and it is, then it easy to assume such standards for the other kingdoms as well, and Daniel told us that there were to be three more. Daniel and history have helped us to understand.
In Daniel chapter five Nebuchadnezzar we must assume is dead and his son Belshazzar is now king. We learn that Belshazzar gave a great party, and God saw fit to provide him with a great sign, handwriting on the wall. Daniel was eventually brought in to interpret, and this is what he read:
“This is the interpretation of the message: ‘MENE’–God has numbered your kingdom and put an end to it. ” ‘TEKEL’–you have been weighed on the scales and found deficient. ” ‘PERES’–your kingdom has been divided and given over to the Medes and Persians.” (Daniel 5:26-28 NASB)
Clear cut evidence that the second empire, or head, is the Medo-Persian empire.
Wikipedia gives us this information:
In 334 BC after re-imposing control over the southern Greek City-States, Alexander began his invasion of the Persian Empire by conquering Asia Minor (Turkey), then Syria, Palestine, and Egypt. He then invaded Mesopotamia (modern Iraq), defeated the Persians at the Battle of Arbela (or Gaugamela) and conquered Babylon.
Thanks to history we can understand that the third empire is the Grecian empire under Alexander’s rule.
The fourth empire is a bit of a mystery as the typical, but ill-conceived school of thought tries to tell us that we should be looking for a resurrected Roman Empire. The “evidence” they use to back their argument for this comes from Daniel chapter 9.
“Then after the sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be cut off and have nothing, and the people of the prince who is to come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. And its end will come with a flood; even to the end there will be war; desolations are determined. (Daniel 9:26 NASB)
Most attribute the title of “prince” to Antiochus Epiphanes, a Roman general who, desecrated the temple, but the scripture gives us every reason to believe that another temple (a third temple) will be built and that it once again will be desecrated.
Another argument is one that ignores the historical record given by both Josephus and Tacitus and attributes the destruction of the temple to the Roman army, an act in conflict with recorded history.
Josephus indicated that conscripted Assyrian troops, marching under the Roman flag, disobeyed commands from Titus to desist, and because of their violent hatred of the Jews, destroyed the temple. (Wars of the Jews, book 6 chapter 4.) This train of thought should help to undo the theory that we are looking for the Antichrist to come out of a restored Roman empire.
So what are we left with for options? Some common sense and history can help us figure that out.
After the death of Alexander, the Grecian empire dissolved under two remaining generals of Alexander, Ptolemy in the South (Egypt and Northern Africa), and Seleucid in North. The Seleucid empire took in the Assyrian empire which included the Babylonian empire, extended into Egypt, and North where they held allegiances with the Scythians of Asia and Southern Russia. Remnants of the Seleucid and Ptolemaic empires still exist today, as does the Assyrian empire under Islamic rule.
Since this head is NOT a man, although it is definite that a man will soon step up and try to lead whatever this entity is.
What then are we talking about? An ideology such as Islam, a fallen angel/demon that controls blindsided nations and people? In 1924 the world thought they had killed off Islam and the damage the Ottoman Caliphate was causing. Only a fool would believe that the Caliphate is still dead. Hopefully, I have given you something logical to think about and therefore make a proper decision as to whom or what this head that sustains the mortal wound is.