The beast(s) of Revelation is the enemy of Christ and all who would believe in Christ. The beast(s) are figures of history representing nations, kingdoms and kings that existed during the age of the Jews and the Jewish temple. We will examine the beasts as they are revealed in Chapters 13 and 17 in Revelation. The beast is also represented in other chapters. However, chapters 13 and 17 highlight the characteristics of the beast as it is revealed in Revelation. The beast is also revealed in Daniel. However, Daniel highlights other characteristics of the beast. We will examine the beast of Daniel in a separate post/category.
The beast is the agent of Satan who gives it authority. The beast carries out Satan’s desire to kill, steal and destroy and seeks to prevent the plan of salvation. However, Satan’s efforts to destroy help fulfill the plan of redemption. Through the generations Satan had a place in heaven. He was a member of God’s court and remained there until he was judged at the cross. As a result, Satan as a former member of the heavenly carried out the commands of God. For example, when God wanted to bring judgment on King Ahab in the book of the Kings and Chronicles, he sent a lying spirit (one of Satan’s minions) to deceive Ahab’s prophets.
1Ki 22:22 And the LORD said unto him, Wherewith? And he said, I will go forth, and I will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And he said, Thou shalt persuade him, and prevail also: go forth, and do so.
Satan and his angels did not lose their place in heaven until after the cross at which time Michael and his angels cast them out. The beast also served the purpose of God acting as an angel of vengeance upon disobedient Israel. Through the nations of the beast God chastised Israel for forsaking his law. We will examine the works of the beast during the time of the age of the Jews in order to better understand the operation of the beast in the age of the gentiles.