Revelation 13:11–18 (ESV)
The Second Beast
11 Then I saw another beast rising
out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon. 12 It exercises all the authority of the first beast in its presence, and makes the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose mortal wound was healed. 13 It performs
great signs, even making fire come down from heaven to earth in front of people, 14 and by the signs that it is allowed to work in the presence of the beast it deceives those who dwell on earth, telling them to make an image for the beast that was wounded
by the sword and yet lived. 15 And it was allowed to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast might even speak and might cause those who would not worship the image of the beast to be slain. 16 Also it causes all, both small and
great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, 17 so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name. 18 This calls for wisdom: let the one who has
understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man, and his number is 666.
The First Beast rose out of the sea, the Second Beast comes rising out of the Earth. The First
Beast tags the Second Beast in the wrestling match. The Second Beast has a different focus, one of deception. The Beast comes posing as Jesus, but is an agent of Satan mascarading as an angel of light or as a wolf in lamb’s clothing.
Scripture says “13 It performs great signs, even making fire come down from heaven to earth in front of people, 14 and by the signs that it is allowed to work in the presence of the beast it deceives those who dwell on earth, telling them to make
an image for the beast that was wounded by the sword and yet lived. 15 And it was allowed to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast might even speak and might cause those who would not worship the image of the beast to be slain.”
This beast is a false prophet, drawing worship away from God, towards Satan. He marks the unbelievers with a false seal; not the seal of the Christians who are sealed on the forehead with the cross. The unbelievers are sealed with the number 666
on their hand or forehead. The scriptures call this number “man’s number”. God’s number is 7, six is just 1less than the holy and complete number of God which is 7. This “man’s number”
symbolizes false religion or false doctrine, which sounds like the real thing, but is twisted just enough to mislead people. We see a lot of the Epistles (Letters) in the New Testament warning of false teachers and false doctrines. The ways that
lead to destruction, but sounds like God’s ways. This is where it is important to study God’s Word to discern what is from God and what is from Satan. We see the church today being led astray with social gospel, liberation gospel, and
adopting believes that are contrary to Scripture. This Beast is very active today, working in organized religion and drawing people away. This reminds me of the Bereans who listened to Paul’s preaching, but went home to verify it with the
scriptures to make sure it was true. Acts 17:10–11 “The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue. 11 Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica;
they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.” I pray: Lord, help me to be like the Bereans, to enjoy hearing the Word of God preached, and being able to verify the Word against
Scripture to know it is true. We see the Church today falling to false teachings and doctrines, and the people don’t know God’s Word and simply accept today’s teachings as true when often the Word is distorted and is not the truth.
Help me Lord to study your Word and to know the truth. In Jesus Christ name I pray, Amen!