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Exploring Revelation
19078
“Revelation 13:1 The Unholy Trinity Pt. 1”
by Art Sadlier   
July 19th, 2009

Revelation 12 tells about Satan’s war with God and his war with Israel.  Revelation 13 tells us about the method Satan uses in the final war of this age.

Revelation 13 is not a part of the chronology (story line) of the book but an interlude giving detailed information about Satan’s tactics. It is here that we are introduced to the “unholy trinity”. This trinity is an evil imitation of the Holy Trinity.

In the Holy Trinity the First Person is “God the Father”.  Satan’s imitation is the great red dragon (12:9) who is Satan. The Second Person of the Holy Trinity is the “Lord Jesus Christ”. Satan’s imitation of Christ is the first beast of Revelation 13:1-10, Antichrist. The Third person of the Holy Trinity is the “Holy Spirit”.  Satan’s imitation of  the Holy Spirit is the second beast of Revelation 13, known as the false prophet, Revelation 13: 11-18.

In this unholy counterfeit trinity we see Satan’s last and greatest attempt to deceive the peoples of the earth, 2 Thess. 2:9-10. "Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved." A great multitude will be deceived.

The Holy Spirit is now preventing or restraining this evil system from coming into place before God’s time, 2 Thess. 2:6-7, "And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way." At present the Holy Spirit carries on His restraining ministry through the lives of believers, Matthew 5:13.  “Ye are the salt of the earth”.  What does salt do?  It prevents corruption.   Matthew 5:14 “Ye are the light of the world”, what does light do?  It dispels the darkness of evil. That is the present day ministry of the Holy Spirit, see John 16:8, "And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment." This present day ministry of the Holy prevents evil from coming to full bloom.

However when at the rapture the believers are taken out of the world the restraining  ministry  of the Holy Spirit will be terminated. Satan, Antichrist and the False Prophet will then be allowed to come forth and they will be totally unrestrained!  Of course the Holy Spirit will be still in the world, He will be drawing men and women  to Christ. He will be convicting those men and women of sin and their need of salvation, and multitudes will be saved.  But for the Christ rejectors their will be no conviction of sin, in fact the opposite will be true!  2 Thess. 2: 11-12, “And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:”

In our study of Revelation from chapter 6 on, we have seen the activities of Antichrist. Now he is described to us as the first beast of Revelation 13. John writes, “And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy”. The first 10 verses of this chapter give us a description of Antichrist and the kingdom he rules over.

Sometimes it is difficult to distinguish between the man and his kingdom. This is true in the Old Testament as well. The kingdom of Antichrist takes on his personality.

Chapter divisions are not a part of divine inspiration. Verse one flows out of the previous chapter, verse 17.  “And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ”.  Why was Satan so angry? In verse 12 Satan is cast out of heaven and he knows, “He hath but a short time”. In the light of that he begins (verse 1) to carry forth his strategy to consolidate his control over the world, and to utterly destroy Israel.

Satan now proceeds to select two men through whom he works to gain total control of the political and religious realms of the entire earth. Satan has always sought to establish his kingdom as an imitation of God’s kingdom. Although he has been given the ruler ship over this present evil world system, yet he knows that God has always been intervening and exercising ultimate control over his (Satan’s) kingdom. Satan desperately wants break God’s sovereign rule! For 6000 years he has worked to that end. But now he knows her has but a short time. God now loosens his grip on Satan and cuts him a little slack.

I stood on the sand of the sea”, in scripture the sea represents something very specific, In Revelation 17:15.  The gentile nations of the world are represented by the restless masses of people, "And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues." Also in Isaiah 57:20, "But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt." During the tribulation period the sea of peoples and nations are in great turmoil. Luke 21:25-26, "And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken."   

John continues in our text verse, “A beast rise up out of the sea”, during that time of tremendous turmoil, Satan will put forward a man, Antichrist. A man Satan will indwell and control. This man will be a false messiah who will appear to have all the solutions to the world’s problems.

In other words, superman comes on the scene with great plans and programs for world peace and security. See Revelation 6:2 ... 1 Thess. 5:2-3 ...Dan. 11:21...Dan. 8:25. 

This is the setting for the beginning of the tribulation period. Today our world is slipping into great turmoil, confusion and distress. We also see the seeds being sown for a totalitarian world. We are rapidly approaching the wind-up of man's day.

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