FROM: 4/7/02 Radio Program
Two or three weeks ago, the program talked about the beast in Daniel 7 - the
same beast in Revelation. This was identified as the Roman (Catholic)
In Revelation, what will the image be that will be made and what will be the
role of the Roman (Catholic) Empire be in the end time?
To clarify one thing our caller said, we never identified the "beast" of
Revelation as the Roman Catholics. Perhaps this person misheard what we said,
but we did not equate the beast in Daniel or Revelation as the Catholics.
Nevertheless, to remind people of what WAS said, a caller had asked about the
descriptions in Daniel 7; and we noted that the descriptions given in Daniel
corresponded to four kingdoms (Babylon, Medo-Persian, Greek, Roman, Daniel
7:4-7, 14). Daniel looked forward in time (beginning with Babylon), and saw
three more kings/kingdoms coming in the future. In the book of Revelation,
Christ through John uses similar descriptions to show Christians that now three
kingdoms have passed away, and they are currently living under the rule of the
fourth beast (kingdom. i.e., Rome). What Daniel saw in prospect/prophecy, John
pointed to as having been a reality. Therefore, this had reference to the Roman
Empire which ruled the world at that time, not the Roman Catholics.
In the question above, concerning the "image" made, since he gave us no
Scripture reference in his question, perhaps what the querist is referring to is
what is found in Revelation 13:14. Yet again, in the context of the four
kingdoms, the last being Rome, whatever this referred to, would have to be
talking about Rome and what they did to the Christians.
The book of Revelation can be difficult to understand at times, but as we
read this book, let us remember a few things:
1) What was written was something that "must shortly come to pass."
(1:1). John said in reference to these things: "the time is at hand" (1:3). Therefore, what is said in this
book is not intended to be an interpretation of world situations 2000+ years later.
2) The book of Revelation has many Old Testament references which would have
meant something to the Christians at this time, but would have meant little to the Romans who had no
knowledge of the Old Testament. Therefore, a working knowledge of the Old Testament clears up many
of the misunderstandings that people have of this book.
3) We must interpret this book in light of those Old Testament descriptions,
and NOT try to interpret the book of Revelation in light of present-day situations and events which happen
around the globe today.
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