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The Last Two Heads

 

The angel told John, “Five heads have fallen, one head is [new], and one is yet to come, but when it does come, he must remain for a little while.” (Revelation 17:10, insertion mine) The new head that appeared in John’s day was Christianity. What was called Christianity during the first few centuries is called Catholicism today. The Greek word katholikos means “universal” or “everywhere.” In other words, as Rome’s version of Christianity spread throughout Europe and Eurasia, the church became known as the Catholic (the universal Christian) Church. John was a charter member of the early church, the religious system that Jesus Himself established during His ministry on Earth (A.D. 27-30). 

 

The verse in Revelation 17:10 is very critical because it involves timing. The angel said (using the past perfect tense): “Five [heads] have fallen” and one head is [new]. If the beginning of Christianity has a birth date, it would have to be Pentecost, A.D. 30. (Acts 2) By A.D. 95, Christianity had spread through much of the Roman Empire, but this was not the end of new religious systems on Earth. The angel said that another head was yet to come and when it does come, it would remain for a little while. The seventh head is Protestantism. Bible prophecy allows us to trace the history of Christianity and Protestantism.  In terms of apostasy, the history of Christianity is no different than the history of Israel.

 

After giving Jews, Catholics, and Protestants an opportunity to represent His interests on Earth, God has proven that all religious systems have become blasphemous over time because the carnal nature within man is the same throughout the world. This also explains why the 144,000 will not come from a single religious body. Jesus will select them from all religious systems because honest-hearted individuals instead of one arrogant religious system will complete the gospel commission.

 

After the powers of the papacy were broken in 1798, the Protestant Reformation blossomed for a few years in Europe and the United States, and then it fragmented into many pieces. God raised up the United States of America to help the woman in Revelation 12, but Protestantism has quickly turned away from God and fallen into apostasy during the past 100 years. Speaking of Protestantism (the seventh head), the angel said, “….but when he [the seventh head] does come, he must remain for a little while.” (Revelation 17:10, insertion mine) This is very true. In terms of religious systems, Protestantism is the “new kid on the block.” It is less than three centuries old while the other six religious systems are more than twenty centuries old.

 

Summarizing, the seven heads represent the seven religious systems of the world: Heathenism, Atheism, Judaism, Eastern Mysticism, Islam, Catholicism, and Protestantism. Consider this: Currently, every person on Earth is a member of one or a variant of these seven religious systems. God intends to confront all seven religious systems at the same time; therefore, He will unite these diverse and antagonistic religious systems with His first four judgments. Together, they will form a monster-sized church-state called Babylon (the leopard-like beast), and Babylon’s senseless behavior will be showcase of blasphemy, arrogance, and ignorance. Modern Babylon will be far worse than ancient Babylon. Honest-hearted people will see the evidence with their own eyes. They will discover that all religions are blasphemous and worthless. “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)

 

Specification 6   Notice the relationship between the great red dragon and the seven heads: “The beast who once was [in Heaven], and now is not [in Heaven], is an eighth king. He belongs to the seven [heads] and is going to his destruction. (Revelation 17:11, insertions mine)

 

Even though we have investigated enough data to determine the identity of the seven heads on the leopard-like beast, there are two more specifications that we need to include. Remember that Daniel 7 predicted a little horn power would uproot three of the original ten horns. Recorded history reveals that with the help of the Roman Catholic Church, the Ostrogoths, Heruli, and Vandals were uprooted and destroyed by A.D. 538. Just as the Bible predicted, after three of the ten horns were uprooted, the Catholic Church became an eighth horn that ruled over the remaining seven horns for 1,260 years. (Daniel 7:25)

 

Revelation 17:11 uses parallel language to describe a similar situation. Lucifer, the great red dragon who was cast out of Heaven, will come up from the Abyss at the fifth trumpet. He will masquerade as Almighty God and reign as an eighth king over the seven heads for a short time. Then, during the sixth trumpet, the devil will suddenly abolish the seven religious systems of Earth because there is no room for religious diversity when “god lives among men.” The devil will divide the people of Earth into groups of a thousand and put them to word, building up “the kingdom of God” for a thousand yeas of peace. Lucifer will appoint ten kings as taskmasters. “They [the ten kings] have one purpose [loyalty] and will give their power and authority to the [lamb-like] beast.”

(Revelation 9:15)

 

Many wicked people will oppose the devil when he sets up his theocracy, especially when he dissolves the seven religious systems of the world, but no one can stop “the man of lawlessness.” To silence the opposition, the devil’s forces will kill a third of mankind. (Revelation 9:15) Notice Paul’s words, “Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way, for the day will not come until the [great] rebellion [against the gospel] occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose [all religions] and will exalt himself over everything that is called God [there will be no God but himself] or is worshiped, so he sets himself up in God’s temple [displaces God’s supremacy], proclaiming himself to be God.” (2 Thessalonians 2:3,4, italics and insertions mine) “And the [devil’s] four angels who had been kept ready for this very hour and day and month and year were released to kill a third of mankind.”

(Revelation 9:15)

 

Specification 7   There is one final specification that concerns the seven heads and the ten horns. “The ten horns you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but for one hour will receive authority as kings along with the [leopard-like] beast.” (Revelation 17:12, insertion mine)

When the leopard-like beast rises to power at the beginning of the Great Tribulation, the seven religious systems of the world (the seven heads) will become more powerful than the world’s political leadership. Because the reality of God will be overwhelming and the evidence of His wrath overpowering, the worlds’ political leaders will meekly defer to the direction of the world’s religious leaders. What else can they do? These religious leaders will create laws for 890 days and the governments of the world will execute Babylon’s demands. When the fifth trumpet occurs, Lucifer will physically appear, and over the course of 150 days, he will convince many of the wicked that he is “Almighty God.” At the sixth trumpet, Lucifer will suddenly modify Babylon by establishing a theocracy with himself and Lord of lords and King of kings. To do this, he will claim that he must abolish the seven religious systems because there is no room for religious diversity when “God” lives and reigns among men. The devil will then appoint ten kings to oversee his newly created theocracy.

 

The Bible appears to say the ten kings and the lamb-like beast will be given authority for sixty minutes (one hour). We know that this is not the case because the sixth trumpet sounds about 295 days before the Second Coming. Actually, the intended idea is not translated properly. The Greek word mia can mean “one” or “first” as in “one hour” or in the “first hour.” In this case, Lucifer will give authority to ten kings during the first hour of his theocracy. Ten horns will displace seven heads in an hour! Lucifer will abolish the seven heads and empower the ten horns to eliminate religious controversy and to prepare for war with Christ. Lucifer knows that Jesus will soon appear and I believe he wants to have control over Earth’s nuclear missiles. “They [the ten kings] have one purpose and will give their power and authority to the beast.” (Revelation 17:13, insertion mine)

 

The seven heads and the ten horns do not share power simultaneously. The (ten) toes of Daniel 2 (see verses 42-44) symbolize Lucifer’s ten kings. The Bible does not name or identify the ten kings. In fact, the Bible says very little about them, but we do know this much about the ten kings: “In the time of those [ten] kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will endure forever.”

9Daniel 2:44), insertion mine) “They [the ten kings] have one purpose and will give their power and authority to the [lamb-like] beast. They will make war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will overcome them because he is the Lord of lords and King of kings - and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers.”

(Revelation 17:13,14, insertions mine)

 

About thirty days before the Second Coming, Lucifer will be unmasked. The wicked will recognize the truth. They will realize that Lucifer is the devil and worse, they know they will share his fate. When this revelation occurs, the wicked will not only loathe Lucifer, but they will also loathe themselves and their participation in his theocracy. The Bible says, “The beast [leopard-like beast, Babylon] and the ten horns [ten kings] you saw will hate the prostitute [Lucifer’s theocracy]. They will [turn on the great whore and] bring her to ruin and leave her naked; they will eat her flesh and burn her with fire [their loathing will be so great]. For God has put it into their hearts to accomplish his purpose by agreeing to give the beast their power to rule, until God’s words are fulfilled.” (Revelation 17:16,17, insertions mine)

 

Summary

 

When all the specifications concerning the leopard-like beast are assembled, Babylon is not hard to identify. Babylon will be a monster0sized church-state. Babylon will rule over the nations with deadly power. It will persecute and devour those who oppose it. At first, the seven heads (the seven religious systems of the world) will control the leopard-like beast. I understand that the pope will be selected as the leader of Babylon and he will lead the world in appeasing God (actually blaspheming God) until the devil appears at the fifth trumpet. At the sixth trumpet, the devil will suddenly abolish the seven religions of the world and put ten kings in their place. Lucifer will assign these ten kings the task of rebuilding the infrastructures of Earth. The devil will demand the reconstruction of the world for the pseudo-purpose of establishing the kingdom of God and bringing in a thousand years of peace Of course, this demand is a big lie. The devil will establish ten kings because he wants these kings to try to destroy Jesus at the Second Coming (perhaps by nuclear arms). It is reasonable to assume that labor camps will be set up and everyone will be forced into hard labor. Slavery will be imposed as a form of punishment. Civil authorities will punish those who refuse to work and obey. The devil will kill most of his opposition for almost a year. It is easy to see how the leopard-like beast mirrors its ancient namesake, the great city of Babylon, whose temporary splendor was created through years of forced labor and destroyed by God in a single night.                          


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