In an attempt to understand the nature of the Antichrist, I’ve gathered relevant scriptures and translated them into my own words, while I contemplate how they all fit together. In discussing this, it’s important to not conform with other’s teachings, but to come to my own conclusion. You should consider this in comparison with others’ teachings. Some of my points will be correct and others wrong. We’re all speculating here.
The Antichrist seems synonymous with the Beast, which seems to be both an empire, and the individual who rules over it. There is also his sidekick, the False Prophet. The Dragon is Satan, and the Great Prostitute is codenamed Babylon.
The identities of these will remain God’s secret until the “Restrainer” of 2 Thessalonians 2 is taken away. I expect other prophecies to be fulfilled before this event including the Ezekiel 38-39 war, which is known as the battle of Gog of Magog. Both events will catastrophically disrupt geopolitics, rendering any current speculations useless. Contrary to popular opinion, I speculate we’re decades away from the wickedness of the Earth being as complete as when Noah’s generation or Lot’s city were destroyed. I still intend to write on my speculations of how bad things might get.
When I look at these prophecies, I conclude that current geopolitics don’t fit what’s coming. Sudden catastrophic changes could rapidly reshape this, as demonstrated by the Covid-19 pandemic. The Tribulation will be a time of unprecedented global catastrophes. During the first 3.5 years, over half the world will die. Then things will get really bad.
My artistic impression
After a lifetime contemplating end times and now deeply contemplating the following scriptures, I currently speculate:
The Antichrist will appear after the removal of the “Restrainer”. This event will be an obvious event, leaving no doubt that the time is here. I speculate this will be the removal of the church through the rapture, but it could also be the visitation of “extra-terrestrials” who are in fact fallen angels. After this, a charismatic leader will suddenly rise to power to lead an empire based around the Mediterranean Sea. This empire will be founded on marriages with ten “kings”, perhaps with fallen angels. He’ll enforce a world-peace treaty with Israel, which may have been proposed decades earlier. This treaty will be enforced for seven years. Only when we see this, will we know who the Antichrist is. He will appear as a shepherd of Israel, favouring their wellbeing and prosperity in particular. These ten kings will come into power solely to give that power to the Antichrist.
At this time, what I speculate is the Vatican, will ride the rise to power of this empire to reassert economic dominance of the Earth, but they will be hated and loathed by this empire and its ruler. I picture an extreme love-hate relationship as these two continue to milk each other for global dominance.
There will be political unrest in this Empire as Egypt and a northern country, e.g. Russia or an Islamic State, attack the Antichrist. The sub-kingdoms of Egypt, Libya and Sudan will be deposed by the Antichrist as he goes on a global rampage. He will then build his base in Israel. Jordan will somehow escape his rampage. This coincides with the first few seals of the tribulation.
Half-way through the seven years, the Antichrist will survive a lethal attack, but remain maimed. The False Prophet, through many miracles, will enthral the world to worship the Beast. He’ll establish an animated image for the Beast, and a Mark like the Nazi swastika, which will become an emblem of allegiance to the Empire. This Mark will represent the number of the Beast’s name i.e. 666. I suspect an artificial intelligence like an advanced version of Siri will animate this image, and even order the execution of those who rebel against the empire by refusing to worship the image. The Antichrist will demand the Jews worship him, and he’ll desecrate their temple, which he probably allowed to be rebuilt as part of the world-peace treaty. This holocaust will dwarf all historic persecutions of the Jews, particularly because it will be world-wide. But the Jews will find a place of refuge, probably in the ancient city of Petra in Jordan.
See my article on the Tribulation for more details of events during this time.
In the end, “Babylon” will be destroyed by fire, perhaps volcanic or perhaps nuclear, to the terror and distress of the world’s economists. After this the Beast will gather his armies to the battle slaughter at Armageddon, when Jesus returns with the saints. The Beast and the False Prophet will be cast into Hell, and Satan imprisoned for 1,000 years, while Jesus restores and reigns over the entire Earth.
I hope you find this impression disagreeable because you’re thinking about these things for yourself, and not simply because they contradict what your pre-conclusions.
The following are the details of these prophecies and a little bit more commentary.
Nebuchadnezzar had a dream about the empires that would rule over Israel, starting from his own, through the Romans to the yet future empire of the Beast, which will derive from the Roman Empire. This empire would be destroyed by the coming Messiah when he establishes his everlasting empire.
Daniel 2:31 You, O king, looked, and saw an impressive statue. This statue, which was amazingly shiny, stood before you. Its appearance was terrifying. 32This statue’s head was made of fine gold, his chest and his arms of silver, his belly and thighs of bronze, 33his legs of iron, his feet partly of iron and partly of clay. 34You looked until a stone was cut out without hands, which hit the statue on his feet that were of iron and clay and shattered them into pieces. 35Then, the iron, clay, bronze, silver, and gold, were all shattered up, and became like the chaff from the summer threshing floors. The wind blew them away, so they couldn’t be found anywhere anymore. The stone that hit the statue became a great mountain and filled the whole Earth.
36This is the dream and we’ll explain its meaning to the king. 37You, O king, are a king of kings. The God of Heaven has given you an empire, power, strength, and glory. 38Wherever people live, he’s given the wild animals of the field and the birds of the air into your hand and made you ruler over them all. You are this head of gold. 39After you there will be another empire, which is inferior to you, and another third empire of bronze, which will rule over all the Earth. 40The fourth empire will be as strong as iron. Since iron shatters and defeats everything, it will shatter and crush everything, just like iron breaks everything. 41Just as you saw the feet and toes, partly of potters’ clay, and partly of iron, the empire will be divided. But it’ll contain the strength of iron, just as you saw the iron mixed with miry clay. 42Just as the toes of the feet were partly iron and partly clay, so the empire will be partly strong and partly broken. 43Just as you saw iron mixed with swampy clay, they’ll mingle themselves with the seed of men, but they won’t truly bond together, just as iron doesn’t bond with clay. 44In the days of these empires, the God of Heaven will set up an empire, which will never be destroyed. The empire won’t be left to other people, but it’ll shatter all these empires and consume them, and it’ll remain forever. 45Just as you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and it shattered the iron, bronze, clay, silver and gold, the great God has made known to the king what will happen in the future. The dream is guaranteed to happen, and its interpretation can be trusted.
This dream prophesies the golden Babylonian Empire, the silver Medo-Persian Empire with its two arms, the bronze waist of Greece, and the iron Roman Empire, which reaches with its eastern and western legs until, in some sense, today. After these are the ten toes of a yet future empire. Just as the materials of the past empires symbolize their strength, whether financial or military, I find it curious that iron mixed with clay describes reinforced concrete, with which modern power is symbolized. In the end, all these empires will be destroyed by Jesus’ return, to establish his empire.
“they’ll mingle themselves with the seed of men” is reminiscent with
Genesis 6:4 There were giants in the Earth in those days, and also after that. When the sons of God had sex with the daughters of men, they gave birth to children for them. These became the mighty men of ancient times and heroes of great legends.
Biblically respected works such as the Book of Enoch detail how these fallen angels took human women to have children with them.
Matthew 24:37 As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.
Modern research into genetic engineering, mixing DNA fragments across different biological kinds is forbidden.
Leviticus 19:19 You will keep my laws. Don’t let different kinds of animals interbreed. Don’t sow your field with different kinds of seed.
The Canaanites practiced genetic engineering in relation to their giants. I can see this returning, even while we dismiss such strange creatures as mythology. The increased interest in aliens could be setting the stage for an “alien visitation”, offering their advanced technologies, particularly genetics. Again, fallen angels could entice women to have children with them.
Whatever way we look at this, this future empire will be established with alliances formed through marriages, but with very fragile bonds.
Daniel’s Beast with ten horns
Daniel 7:7 After this in the visions during the night, I saw a fourth, terrifying, frightening, and incredibly powerful Beast, which had great iron teeth. It devoured and shattered up and trampled whatever remained. It was different to all the beasts that came before it. It had ten horns. 8While I was thinking about the horns, I saw another little horn came up among them. Three of the first horns were uprooted before it. This horn had eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking arrogantly.
11I then looked because of the voice and the arrogant words which the horn spoke. I watched until the Beast was killed, and his body destroyed, and thrown into the blazing fire.
19Then I wanted to know the truth of the fourth Beast, which was different to all the others. He was exceedingly terrifying. His teeth were made of iron, and his nails of bronze. He devoured, shattered, and trampled whatever remained. 20I wanted to know about the ten horns that were in his head, and the other which came up, before whom three fell. I also wanted to know about that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spoke very arrogantly, which looked more impressive than the others. 21I watched, and that horn made war with the saints, and conquered them 22until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the Most High. Then the time came, that the saints possessed the empire.
23So he said, the fourth Beast will be the fourth empire on Earth, which will be different to all empires. It’ll devour the whole Earth, tread it down and break it in pieces. 24The ten horns out of this empire are ten kings that will arise. Another will rise after them. He’ll be different to the first ones, and he’ll subdue three kings. 25He’ll speak impressive words against the Most High and wear out the saints of the most High. He’ll attempt to change holy days and religious laws. The saints will be given into his hand for three and a half years.
The ten toes are ten kings. Three will be overthrown by a new, greater king who will try to replace Jewish practices and persecute God’s people for 3.5 years.
Daniel’s seventy weeks of years
Daniel 9:26 After 434 [more] years the Messiah will be executed, but not for his own crimes. The people of that empire will destroy the city and the holy temple. Its end will be with a flood, and until the end of the war, there will be desolations. 27He’ll confirm the covenant with many for seven years, and in the middle of those seven years he’ll stop the sacrifices and offerings. He’ll lay out disgusting things to desecrate it, until his evil is complete, and his fate will be poured out on him.
The Roman Empire executed Jesus. Later they destroyed Jerusalem and the temple in 70AD and exiled the Jews. From this empire, a ruler will arise, who’ll confirm a treaty between Israel and the world for seven years. In the middle of this, he’ll desecrate their temple as Antiochus and Titus did when they sacrificed a pig on the altar.
“until his evil is complete” reminds me of God speaking to Abraham
Genesis 15:16 But in the fourth generation [your descendants] will come here again. For the sins of the Amorites is not yet complete.
Soon after that, God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, whose sins must have been “complete”, but it was 400 years later that the Amorites were destroyed by Moses.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord isn’t slow in keeping his promise as some understand it, instead he is patient with all of us. He doesn’t want anyone to be destroyed, but that everyone would turn from their wicked ways.
The Antichrist according to Daniel
Daniel 11:36 The emperor will do whatever he wants. He’ll elevate himself, to be greater than every god, and he’ll speak arrogantly against the God of gods. He’ll prosper until God’s anger is complete. For what is decided will be done. 37He’ll have no interest in the God of his fathers, nor the desire of women, nor any god. He’ll elevate himself above all others. 38But instead of them, he’ll honour the God of power. He’ll honour a god that his fathers didn’t know – with gold, silver, precious stones, and other expensive things. 39He’ll attack the strongest fortresses with the help of an unfamiliar god. He’ll promote those who support him. He’ll make them rule over many people, and he’ll divide the land for profit.
Many speculate a Catholic or a Muslim Antichrist, and that he’ll present himself as the Messiah of all religions. He’ll prove from their own scriptures how they’ve deviated from the original revelation of God that was common to them all. In this way he’ll unite them into one new religion.
From this passage, we see that he’ll honour a god who is unfamiliar to his fathers. I speculate that this new religion would in fact be the original pagan religion – that practiced at Babel, and before the flood. I think it will be a religion that acknowledges our eternal creator God but portrays him as the enemy. A common theme in polytheism is that the original creator god is superseded by the other gods – we don’t talk about him because it makes the other gods angry. As at Babel, he will enslave the world – like happened to the Germans under Hitler’s rule. Through his incredible charisma, he’ll rally the people world to ally with him. As in Hitler’s Germany, out of a sense of conformity, they’ll all proudly wear their mark of allegiance to him – on their right arm or on their forehead. Maybe like various jihadi groups do. Typically, this is thought to be a permanent mark such as a tattoo. I can imagine how the regulation would begin with the right hand, but some are so enthralled by him they’ll say, “Hell no, I’ll have it tattooed across my forehead!”
Daniel 11:40 At the time of the end Egypt will come against him, and a northern country will come against him like a whirlwind, with tanks and other vehicles, and many transports. He’ll invade and sweep through many countries. 41He’ll also invade Israel, and many countries will be overthrown. But Jordan will escape out of his hand. 42He’ll attack many countries, and the land of Egypt won’t escape. 43He’ll take over the treasures of gold and silver, and all the precious things of Egypt. Libya and Sudan will submit to him. 44News from of the east and the north will trouble him. So, he’ll go out with great fury to destroy, and utterly wipe them out. 45He’ll build his camp between the seas in the glorious holy mountain. However, he’ll be killed with no one to help him.
When attacked, in his global revenge, he’ll overthrow Egypt, Libya and Sudan. These seem to be the three kingdoms uprooted by the little horn.
This seems to be partially fulfilled with Antiochus Epiphanes, but his history doesn’t fit perfectly, leaving this yet to be fulfilled.
Daniel 12:1 At that time Michael will arise, the great prince who represents the children of your people. There’ll be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation until then. At that time, your people will be rescued – everyone that’s found written in the book. 2Many who sleep in the dust of the Earth will awake, some to eternal life, and some to shame and eternal punishment. 3Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the sky, and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.
At the time of the world’s greatest trouble, many will be raised from the dead – both the righteous and the wicked, to meet their fate.
It is reasonable to see a mid-tribulation rapture here, although this passage talks about both the righteous and the wicked resurrecting.
4But you, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, until the time of the end. Many will travel everywhere, and knowledge will increase
Today, we see an incredible increase of people travelling all over the world, and the ability to access knowledge is growing exponentially.
7I heard the man clothed in linen, who was on the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand to Heaven, and swore by him that lives forever, that it will be for 3.5 years. When he’s completely scattered the power of the holy people, all these things will be finished.
This speaks of the second half of the seven years.
11From the time that the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the disgusting thing of desecration is set up, will be 1,290 days. 12Blessed is he who remains faithful until 1,335 days.
From the desecration of the temple will be 3 years and 7 months. Those who remain faithful for a further 1.5 months will be blessed. I wonder what’s up with this extra 1-2.5 months. Maybe a time of purification when Jesus returns. Note that a prophetic year is 360 days, which differs from a solar year by 36.75 days over seven years.
Zechariah’s foolish shepherd
Following Jesus’ death, the Good Shepherd is replaced with an evil one.
Zechariah 11:16 I will raise up a shepherd in the land who won’t look for those that are lost, nor search for the young one, nor heal the one that’s injured, nor feed the one that is healthy. He’ll eat the flesh of the fat ones and tear off their hooves. 17Woe to the useless shepherd that leaves the flock! The sword will strike his arm, and his right eye. His arm will wither up, and his right eye shall be totally blind.
If this refers to the Antichrist, this describes the fatal wound from which he is healed.
The Restrainer of the Antichrist
Thessalonians 2:1 Concerning the coming of
our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers and
sisters, 2not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by the
teaching allegedly from us – whether by a prophecy, word of mouth, or by letter
– asserting that the day of the Lord has already come. 3Don’t
let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the
rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to
destruction. 4He will oppose and elevate himself over
everything that is called God or is worshipped, so that he sets himself up in
God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.
5Don’t you remember that when I was with you I used to tell you these things? 6Now you know what is holding him back, so that he’ll be revealed at the proper time. 7The hidden power of lawlessness is already at work. The one who now holds it back will continue to do so until he is taken out of the way. 8Then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will overthrow with the breath of his mouth and destroy by the glory of his coming.
The Antichrist cannot be known until the one holding him back is taken away. Therefore, any speculation as to him being any particular ruler before this event, is deceptive slander. Before he’s revealed, a spiritual power will be taken away, leaving no doubt that the time has come. This is our comfort in the face of wicked rumours. This restraining power might be the church or an angel restraining nine tenths of the demons.
Jubilees 10:11 And we did according to all His words: all the malignant evil ones we bound in the place of condemnation, and a tenth part of them we left that they might be subject before Satan on the earth.
Whatever this event is, it will radically impact the world, and lead to the rapid rise to power of the Antichrist.
The Beast, the Dragon and the False Prophet
Revelation 13:1 I stood on the sand of the Mediterranean, and saw a Beast rise up out of the sea with seven heads and ten horns. On his horns were ten crowns, and on his heads a name that insults God. 2The 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. 3I saw one of his heads looked like it had been killed, and his deadly wound was healed. The whole world was amazed and followed the Beast. 4They worshipped the Dragon, who gave power to the Beast. They worshipped the Beast, saying, “Who is like the Beast? Who can fight against him?” 5He was given a mouth that spoke arrogantly and insulted God. He was allowed to continue for forty-two months. 6He opened his mouth to insult God, his name, where he lives, and those who live in Heaven. 7He was allowed to fight against the saints, and to overcome them. He was given power over all peoples, languages, and nations. 8All that live on the Earth will worship him – those whose names aren’t written in the book of life of the Lamb, who was sacrificed from the foundation of the world. 9If anyone can hear, they should pay attention. 10He who takes captives will go into captivity. He who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword. This will test the patience and the faith of the saints.
11I saw another beast coming up out of the Earth. He had two horns like a lamb, and he spoke like a Dragon. 12He exercises all the power of the first Beast on his behalf and makes the Earth and all who dwell in it worship the first Beast, whose deadly wound was healed. 13He performs amazing miracles, even making fire come down from the sky on the Earth for people to see. 14He deceives those who live on the Earth through those miracles, which he had power to do on behalf of the Beast. He orders those who live on the Earth to make an image honouring the Beast, which had the wound by a sword and survived. 15He was able to give life to the Beast’s image, that the Beast’s image can both speak, and order all those who would not worship the Beast’s image to be executed. 16He makes everyone, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads. 17No one would be able to buy or sell without having the Mark, the name of the Beast, or the number of his name. 18This calls for wisdom. Let those with insight work out the number of the Beast. For it’s the number of a man, and his number is 666.
The Beast is the Antichrist and/or his empire. The Dragon is Satan, whom they worshipped along with the Beast. None dared resist him over the latter 3.5 years of the tribulation, coinciding with Daniel 12:7. Another beast, known as the False Prophet, makes the whole world worship the Beast; by making an image, which is animated, some speculate with artificial intelligence.
Remember that Satan offered his authority to Jesus if he would bow down to him
Matthew 4:8 Again, the Devil took [Jesus] up an incredibly high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world, and all of their glory. 9He said to [Jesus], “I’ll give you all of these things if you would fall down and worship me.”
See my article about the Mark of the Beast for an analysis of this topic. The Mark of the Beast is primarily an outward sign of worship and allegiance; but may also be incorporated in commerce. The trendy speculation is a microchip, which raises as much fear in people, as was mongered when credit cards and bar codes were introduced. A microchip by itself is not a visible mark but could be combined with one.
While those with insight are called to work out the Beast’s number, ancient church fathers commented that there are many common names that add up to 666, so we shouldn’t speculate ahead of the time. Instead when the time comes, this will be an additional confirmation that this is not the Messiah, and we should not submit ourselves to worship him, particularly by receiving his Mark, even if this would cut us off from commerce. Remember that God provided for the Jews in the desert for 40 years. Jesus fed thousands from a few loaves. Therefore, God will provide for believers at this time.
Matthew 6:33 Seek God’s kingdom first, and his righteousness. Then all these things will be provided for you.
Babylon the great, the mother of prostitutes
17:1 One of the seven angels came who had the seven vials, and said to me, “Come
up here. I’ll show you the judgment of
the great Prostitute that sits on many waters. 2The rulers of the Earth
have indulged in immorality with her, and the inhabitants of the Earth have
been made drunk with the wine of her immorality.”
3So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness. I saw a woman sit on a red Beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. 4The woman was clothed in purple and red, and wore gold, precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of disgusting things and filthiness of her immorality. 5On her forehead was a name written, ‘Mystery, Babylon the Great, the Mother of Prostitutes and Disgusting Things of the Earth’. 6I saw the woman was drunk from the blood of the saints, and the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. When I saw her, I was totally amazed.
7The angel said to me, “Why were you amazed? I’ll tell you the mystery of the woman, and the Beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and ten horns. 8The Beast that you saw once was, and has been destroyed, but will return out of the bottomless pit, to go into eternal punishment. Those who live on the Earth will be amazed when they look at the Beast that once was, and has been destroyed, and will return – those whose names were not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world. 9This requires a wise mind to understand. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sits. 10There’s seven empires. Five have been destroyed, one rules today, and the other will come in the future. When it comes, it’ll only last a little while. 11The Beast that once was, and has been destroyed, is the eighth. It’s one of the seven and will go into eternal punishment. 12The ten horns which you saw are ten kings, which have not received a kingdom yet. They’ll receive power as kings for one hour with the Beast. 13They’re of one mind and will give their power and strength to the Beast. 14They’ll make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them. For he is Lord of lords, and King of kings. Those who are with him are called, chosen and faithful.” 15He said to me, “The waters which you saw, which the Prostitute sits on, are peoples, multitudes, nations and languages. 16The ten horns which you saw on the Beast will hate the Prostitute. They’ll make her desolate and naked, eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. 17For God has put desires in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree and give their kingdom to the Beast, until the words of God are fulfilled. 18The woman which you saw is that great city, which reigns over the kings of the Earth.”
The Prostitute is called Babylon – spiritually. She sits/rides on many waters, which are many nations. She sits on a red Beast with seven heads and ten horns and is dressed in purple and red and precious jewels. She’s responsible for killing many saints and is the great city that rules over the Earth.
The seven empires are five before Rome, Rome and a future one. The future one will reign for a short time. The Beast is one of the first five before Rome, which has re-formed.
The Beast matches the description of the Beast from Revelation 13 with seven heads and ten horns. It preceded Rome, was destroyed, and will return. Its seven heads are seven mountains which the Prostitute sits on. The ten horns are ten kings who exist solely to give their authority to the Beast. They hate the Prostitute.
The Prostitute seems to describe the Vatican/Rome: The city which at John’s time ruled over the Earth and has continued to do so to some extent. The Vatican wear red and purple clothes and responsible for more martyrs than any other entity throughout history. Googling “city on seven mountains” returns “Rome”.
I strongly believe that there are wonderful, godly people throughout the Catholic Church and in the Vatican. One must be careful not to generalize a prejudice against others because they worship differently or have some dodgy doctrine. We should encourage them in the good doctrines, and gently, and humbly try to lead them away from bad doctrines. Typically, they’ve inherited their doctrine from generations of teachers – just like we have: some good and some not so good.
Matthew 7:5 first cast out the beam from your own eye, then you’ll see clearly to clean away the speck from your brother’s eye.
The seven empires seem
to be those that have ruled over Israel:
Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Greece, and Rome, and Islam (?).
Given that the seventh empire rules over Israel for only a little while, perhaps this is the British empire. Islam’s rule over Palestine did not include a Jewish state, but the British empire’s short rule saw the establishment thereof.
The Beast is a resurrection of one of the first five empires. This contradicts it being a revived Roman empire. Perhaps this is a different beast that looks similar, but I doubt it. Since the little horn of Daniel 7:8 will depose Egypt, Sudan and Libya, this rules out Egypt. The Roman Empire encompassed Greece and Egypt. Its rival was Persia, which is modern Iran, but I expect them to be severely weakened by the Ezekiel 38 war. This war may leave a power vacuum for their rival, Iraq, to resurrect the Babylonian Empire, although their ancient capital will never be rebuilt:
Isaiah 13:19 Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldeans’ excellency, will be like when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. 20It will never be inhabited. It won’t be lived in ever again.
Assyria seemed to have a recent resurgence when ISIS arose in that same territory. They were based in Mosul, which is the ancient Assyrian capitol of Nineveh. This is another possible empire arising out of the post-Ezekiel 38 power-vacuum. See my analysis of Ezekiel 38-39 and earlier thoughts.
Perhaps the mingling of iron and clay represents this frenemy alliance between Babylon and the Beast.
The judgement of Babylon
Revelation 18:1 After these things, I saw another angel come down from Heaven, who had great power and lit up the Earth with his glory. 2He called out loud with a powerful voice, saying, “Babylon the Great is fallen, is fallen, and has become the home of demons, and the prison of every evil spirit, and a cage for every unclean and detestable bird. 3All the nations have drunk from the wine of the wrath of her immorality. The kings of the Earth have indulged in her immorality, and the merchants of the Earth have grown rich with her many luxuries.” 4I heard another voice from Heaven, saying, “Come out of her, my people, so that you won’t take part in her sins, and so that you won’t be caught up in her punishment. 5For her sins have been heard about in Heaven, and God is calling her sins to account. 6Give her exactly what she has given. Repay her double of what she’s given. In the cup which she’s filled, give her twice as much. 7As much as she’s glorified herself and lived in prosperity, give her equivalent punishment and grief. For she says in her heart, ‘I sit as queen, and I’m no widow, and I’ll see no grief.’ 8Therefore, her plagues will come in one day, death, mourning and famine. She’ll be utterly burned with fire. For the Lord God is mighty who judges her. 9The kings of the Earth, who have indulged in her immorality, and lived in prosperity with her, will cry out for her, and mourn for her when they see the smoke of her burning. 10They’ll stand at a distance, terrified of her punishment, saying, ‘How horrible. That great city, Babylon. That mighty city! Your judgment has fallen on you in one hour.’ 11The merchants of the Earth will weep and mourn over her because no one buys their merchandise any more – 12the merchandise of gold, silver, precious stones and pearls; fine linen, purple, silk and scarlet; all kinds of fragrant wood, and all sorts of containers of ivory, and all sorts of containers of most precious wood, bronze, iron and marble; 13and cinnamon, spices, ointments, frankincense, wine, oil, fine flour, and wheat; and wild animals, sheep, horses, chariots, slaves and the souls of people. 14The fruits which you craved have been taken from you, and luxurious and extravagant things have been taken from you. You’ll never find them again. 15The merchants of these things, who profited through her, will stand at a distance, terrified at her punishment, weeping and wailing, 16saying, ‘How horrible for that great city, which was clothed in fine linen, purple and scarlet, and decked with gold, precious stones and pearls! 17For in one hour such great riches have been destroyed.’ Every shipmaster, their passengers, and sailors, and all who trade overseas, stood at a distance 18and cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, ‘What city is like this great city!’ 19They threw dust on their heads, and cried, weeping, and wailing, saying, ‘How horrible for that great city, in which everyone who had ships in the sea was made rich because of her wealth! For in one hour she’s been destroyed.
20Rejoice over her, Heaven, and you holy apostles and prophets. Because God has dealt with her as she did to you. 21A mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and threw it into the sea, saying, ‘With violence like this, that great city Babylon will be thrown down, and will never be seen again. 22The voice of harpists, musicians, pipers, and trumpeters will never be heard in you again. No craftsman of any sort will ever be found in you again. The sound of a millstone will never be heard in you again. 23The light of a candle will never shine in you again. The voice of the bridegroom and the bride will never be heard in you again. Because your merchants were the powerful men of the Earth. Because you deceived all the nations with your witchcraft.’ 24The blood of prophets and saints was found in her, as well as all who were killed throughout the Earth.
Revelation 19:1 After these things I heard a great voice of many people in Heaven, saying, “Hallelujah. Salvation, glory, honor, and power, to the Lord our God. 2Because his judgments are true and righteous. Because he’s dealt with the great Prostitute, who corrupted the Earth with her immorality, and he’s avenged the blood of his servants at her hand.” 3Again they said, “Hallelujah.” Her smoke rose up for ever and ever.
“Babylon” seems to be a coastal city, the center of international trade and wickedness. But God will utterly destroy it in one day.
Hollywood loves to read a nuclear attack into this, but its destruction could also be volcanic, an asteroid or an unnatural act of God. Whatever it is, people will keep their distance in fear of being caught up in it.
The feast of judgement and Satan’s imprisonment
Revelation 19:17 I saw an angel standing in the sun. He called out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in the sky, “Come and gather yourselves together for the supper of the great God. 18So you can eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses, of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and slaves, both small and great. 19I saw the Beast, the kings of the Earth and their armies, who gathered to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army. 20The Beast was taken, and with him the False Prophet that performed miracles on his behalf, with which he deceived those who’d received the Mark of the Beast, and those who worshipped his image. Both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with sulphur. 21The rest were slaughtered with the sword of him who sat on the horse, whose sword proceeds out of his mouth. All the birds were filled with their flesh.
Revelation 20:1 I saw an angel come down from Heaven with the key of the bottomless pit, and a great chain in his hand. 2He grabbed the Dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. 3He threw him into the bottomless pit, and imprisoned him, and set a seal on him, so that he couldn’t deceive the nations anymore – not until the thousand years are finished. After that he must be set free for a little season.
After Babylon’s destruction, the Beast gathers his armies to fight against Jesus’ return, but Jesus will destroy him by speaking death over them. Birds will gather to consume their remains.
This is the battle of Armageddon at the end of the tribulation. We see that the Beast and the False Prophet will both be cast into Hell. This confirms that they are both people – empires and computers can’t be cast into Hell, they just cease to exist.
Not only will the earthly powers be destroyed, but Satan will be imprisoned for a thousand years, during which people will live without the excuse of his temptations.
I pray that God would continue to guide us as we put aside preconceptions and seek the truth of his word. I pray that this weird perspective would dislodge erroneous ideas about the Antichrist; and bring you closer to an understanding of God’s plan that he’s revealed through his Word.
Shalom, and blessings