True Lamb

In Revelation, Jesus is the “slain Lamb” who redeems men, but both the “Beast” and the “False Prophet” mimic him in order to deceive humanity .  One of the beast’s “ heads ” received the “ death-stroke ” that was then “ healed .” It “ was, and is not, and is going to ascend from the Abyss ,” which causes the “ inhabitants of the earth ” to marvel at the “ Beast ” and to render homage to the “ Dragon .” The “ death ” and restoration of the “ Beast ” is the counterfeit of the death and resurrection of Jesus, the true “ Lamb .” - [ Lamb photo by Hetty Stellingwerf on Unsplash ].

Pseudo Messiah

The “beast from the earth” mimics the Lamb and presents a counterfeit of the true faith – Revelation 13:11-18 .  John saw a second “ beast   ascending from the earth ” whose purpose was to deceive the “ inhabitants of the earth ” into giving allegiance to the first “ beast .” While the “ beast from the sea ” is characterized by political power, this second creature uses deception and economic control to cajole and coerce men to submit to the overlordship of the first “ beast ” - [ Photo by Kyle Smith on Unsplash ].

Antichrist - Final Incarnation

The “spirit of the antichrist” is raising up deceivers within the church, though a final “antichrist” will also appear at the end of the age .  The only New Testament author who uses the term “ antichrist ” is John, and only in two of his letters. He applied it to “ false prophets ” who were active in his congregations, false brethren he charged with denying that “ Jesus is the Christ ” and had “ come in the flesh .” Such men were of the “ spirit of antichrist ” that already was operating in the world in John’s day - [ Photo by Colin Lloyd on Unsplash ].

Two Final Events

The New Testament warns several times of coming deceivers and apostasy in the days prior to the return of Jesus .  The Apostle Paul described two things that must occur before the “ Day of the Lord ” when Jesus will gather his elect – the “ apostasy ” and the “ revelation of the man of lawlessness .” And in his second letter to the Thessalonians, the two events are inextricably linked, for the goal of the “ lawless one ” is to deceive believers - [ Church in Storm - Photo by Dominique Josse on Unsplash ].

The Coming War

At the end of the age, Satan and his minions will launch the final “war” against the saints, the followers of the Lamb .  Several times the book of Revelation describes “ the war ,” the final assault by Satan and his earthly vassals against the followers of Jesus, the “ saints .” In each case, “war” is singular, and in the Greek text, its noun form is accompanied by the definite article. It is “ THE war .” And both the Greek noun and its verb form are applied to the same future event - [ Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash ].