A Woman Rides a Beast, Pt. 2

Scripture: Revelation 17:1-18, Daniel 7:1-28
Date: 02/21/2017 
Who do the women and the beasts in Daniel and Revelation represent? Part 2 of 2

The Beast, the Dragon, and the Woman

The Beast, the Dragon, and the Woman
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The 14th century Aztec empire was one of the most powerful and sophisticated civilizations in the Western Hemisphere; yet, this kingdom of two million people was conquered within a year by a Spanish force of just 600 lightly armored men. How did it happen? Well, the Aztecs believed in the coming of Quetzalcoatl, a legendary feathered, bearded, light-skinned god-king who was going to come from across the sea to Mexico. When the Conquistadors arrived in 1519, Hernando Cortez impersonated this god of the Aztecs to befuddle the superstitious king Montezuma. By fooling the native people, Cortez completed his conquest that included enslaving and murdering many of them. The vague prophecies of their Aztec god easily paved the way for a counterfeit.

Jesus has foretold that in the last days, many false christs and false prophets will use great signs and wonders to deceive, if it were possible, even God's very elect. He also said most people will be deceived, will you? That's why you need to join me for today's program, as we learn from the Bible how to identify false christs and false prophets.

>>I want to welcome those, again, who are watching, to the Prophecy Encounter series. Now, if this is the first time you're tuning in, you do need to brace yourself because we're going to be - you're going to be hearing just one of the most intense controversial presentations that can be coming from the book of Revelation, and we just are praying for God's Spirit to be with us. You pray for me that I'll just say things gracefully, but I also want to be faithful in sharing the truth with you because, as Christ said, the time is at hand.

The presentation tonight is dealing with the subject a woman rides a beast and this hearkens from a prophecy in a picture that you'll find in Revelation 17. Now, in this presentation in particular, we're going to be talking about 'What is this beast that keeps reappearing in the books of Revelation and Daniel?' So what are some of the primary clues to identify the antichrist beast that you find in Revelation 17?

Turn in your Bibles real quick - Revelation chapter 17 and this is where you need to, like, take a deep breath, "Then one of the seven angels" - verse 1 - "who had the seven bowls came and talked with me, saying to me, 'Come, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot'" - that's obvious she's not good - "who sits on many waters." What do the waters represent? Control over many people - "with whom the kings of the earth" - the governments - "'committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with the wine of her fornication.' So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness. And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy having seven heads and ten horns. The woman was arrayed" - she was clothed - "in purple and scarlet," - what colors did I say?


>>"and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls" - sounds beautiful - "and a golden cup full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication was in her hand. And on her forehead a name was written: mystery. Babylon the great. The mother of harlots and of the abominations of the earth. I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. And when I saw her, I marveled with great amazement. But the angel said to me, 'Why did you marvel? I will tell you the mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her,"

So let's go ahead now and go into the interpretations that you'll find here. Who is this woman? "and the woman whom you saw" - you look in the last verse in chapter 17 - you got your Bible there? - it says the woman that you saw "is that great city which reigns over the kings of the earth." When John was a prisoner on the Isle of Patmos, what great city was reigning over the kings of the Earth?


>>Rome. So what does a woman represent?


>>A woman.


>>A church. So you've got a woman riding Rome. If I said nothing else, you ought to start getting it right there. But we're going to keep going. It just - this is, I think, a pretty vivid example of Bible prophecy being clear. It says there's seven heads. What do the seven heads represent? If you want to argue with Gabriel, you take it up with him, but he told John, "Here is the mind which has wisdom: the seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits."

Now, is everybody here aware that if you just look in the encyclopedia it's going to tell you Rome is called the City of Seven Hills? Is there a principle church that has its headquarters in Rome?


>>Mm hmm.

>>What colors is she wearing?


>>Purple and scarlet. Purple and scarlet are the official colors of the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic church. Cardinals wear scarlet robes and the archbishops wear purple. And you'll even find times where the Pope will wear both.

What other clues were given there in chapter 17? It says that the woman is "adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls." Well, have any of you ever been to Rome? Have you seen the Vatican and some of the treasures there? It's absolutely amazing. It says the Vatican treasure of solid gold has been estimated by the United Nations World Magazine - it numbers in several billion dollars. Now that's just the holdings of gold - that's the gold that is in the American reserve, it's in Switzerland, it's in a variety of banks. It's not counting the gold in the actual priceless treasures they own and it doesn't count the real estate. It does not count all their holdings in silver and the cash that they have invested. They are one of the wealthiest institutions in the world.

So she's got a golden cup in her hand and if you read in - it says "the golden chalice" - in there - you can go to the Catholic encyclopedia - it occupies the first place among all the sacred vessels of the church." Now where is that in the Bible? Is that a Bible teaching? Are there any clear points from which we can draw from Daniel 7 to help us identify the antichrist power?

Alright, so now we're looking back in Daniel 7 - we're comparing scripture with scripture - and it gives us ten characteristics. I put them in letters here and so you can see, it'll go A through J and it says that, first of all, it arises from among the ten; it's a human leader; it uproots three other leaders; it's diverse or different; it's a persecuting power; and after 476 ad it divides; it rules for 1260 years or a time, a time and the dividing of time. It's guilty of blasphemy; it's changed God's law - 'He would think to change times and laws' - and there's this little horn power that's got - it's unique or different from the others.

Does the Papacy fit these ten points that we just saw? Look here, first of all, did it come up from among the main nations that you find in Europe? It did. Where's [Rome]? It was right in the very middle of [Italy] - it came up in the middle of the Mediterranean. You notice what it said in Daniel 7? 'I saw these beasts come up from the great sea.' What was the Great Sea for Bible writers? They had the Sea of Galilee, they had the Dead Sea, and then they had the Great Sea, which is the Mediterranean. And, of course, Italy is a peninsula in the very midst of the great sea. And so that's where it says this power rises up.

It says "The dragon gave him his power, his seat, and great authority." So pagan Rome, which is the dragon, then gives the very position to this new institution that developed, and you can just read about that. With the conversion of Constantine - you realize Christianity was called 'Religio Ilicita' in Rome to begin with. Christians were chased out of Rome, at one point - and Jews. You can read that in the book of Acts - and it was forbidden and they were terribly persecuted.

But over time, Constantine was fighting battles on the outside - he was a Roman emperor - and he said, 'You know, Christians aren't hurting anybody. They're pretty peaceful.' Nero wanted to wipe them out but it didn't work. The more they persecuted them the more they grew. And he claimed to have a vision, he said, 'I’m now to fight and conquer under the sign of the cross. Constantine legalized Christianity and - his mother was a Christian - and almost overnight it became vogue to be a Christian and everybody in the government wanted to be a Christian. And, all of a sudden, all the pagan priests and the pagan gods in Rome, they said, you know, 'What do we do with our gods?' and there was a big rush - all of a sudden, everyone wanted to be a Christian. But what the devil could not do in trying to destroy the church on the outside by persecution - feeding the Christians to lions, chasing them underground to the catacombs - the devil now accomplished by joining the church. He legalized it. And all of a sudden, there was great compromise that came into the church.

>>Don't go anywhere, friends. In just a moment we will return to today's presentation.

>>Have you read what the Bible actually says about the last-day events? Are you familiar with the signs of the Second Coming - the last plagues and the final judgment? Anyone who's even glancing at the headlines today probably wonders if our world is plunging toward Armageddon. But I want to let you know that, even in the face of all that's happening, you can still live with peace and assurance for your future. Would you like to know how?

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>>You know, there's a commandment that says, 'Do not make images and pray to them.' It's one of the Ten Commandments, right? You've got to take that up with the Lord. That's what it says, right? Second commandment. Well, they had all these idols of all the gods all over Rome. They had - someone said they had more idols in Rome than they had birds. They were everywhere.

They had Mercury and Apollos and Zeus and all the Greek gods that they mingled with the Roman gods and they had pantheons of gods and even Paul, in the book of Acts, he goes and he preaches to the Greeks. He said, 'As I was looking at all your gods' - they had idols and statues of Diana and Athena and all - and when everyone became a Christian and the Bible said, you know, we are to worship God, they said, 'What are do we do with our idols?' Well, they didn't want to lose the pagans and they said, 'Well, you know, we need to teach them gradually.' And so, they said, 'Give them Christian names to start with.' And so they started calling their idols Peter, James, John, Jesus, Mary.

All of a sudden everything began to change in the church. Good people, but they began to compromise. And, you know, some of the Christian leaders, they said, 'Well, you know, we'll get more people into the church if we make a few compromises. We'll bring more in.' And that was the whole idea. "The transfer of the emperor's residence to Constantinople was a sad blow to the prestige of Rome."

Now it says that they got their power, seat, and authority from this fourth beast - Rome. When the emperor moved the capital from Rome to Constantinople, it looked like Rome was going to lose its glory. But listen to what the historians say: 'Someone might have predicted at that time her speedy decline, but the development of the church and the growing authority of the bishop of Rome,' - better known as the Pope - 'it gave her a new lease on life and made her, again, the capital - this time the religious capital - of the civilized world.'

Where it used to be in Jerusalem, now the Christian capital moved to Rome. And where Rome was the world empire for political power, now it became the spiritual capital of the world and that hasn't changed in over a thousand years, of course. 'To the succession of the Caesars came the succession of the pontiffs in Rome.' And so, instead of it now having a succession of one Caesar following another, the Caesars sort of left town - they began to lose power - but the church in Rome began to gain power. They were actually given an army to enforce religion. And we'll get to that in a moment.

When Constantine left Rome, he gave his seat to the pontiff. Isn't that what we just read from the Bible? Got his power and his seat from the dragon - that's exactly what happened, historically. It would have a man as its head who would speak for the papacy. The papacy, of course, has one man, the Pope who speaks for it, so it's a single individual that is the leader of this organization, it meets that criteria as well. It says, "and authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation." What does the word 'Catholic' mean?


>>It means universal. Matter of fact, some of you, you may even be a Protestant and you may have, from time to time, read what they call the Apostle's Creed and it says, 'I am part of the holy Catholic church'. When I first read that in a Protestant church I said, 'What?' They said, 'No, the word 'Catholic' means universal.' And so, it is a global movement - it's not just localized. And in another statement, it says here - Pope Boniface VIII said, "We, moreover, proclaim, declare and pronounce that it is altogether necessary to salvation for every human being to be subject to the Roman pontiff." They say this is their teachings - that he is to have absolute respect as the supreme authority.

It says it was a man with a mouth speaking great things. It goes on and tells us then that this power would pluck up or uproot three other kingdoms - remember that little horn comes up? Three other horns are, sort of, displaced because of that. How did that happen?

You look at history. It says the three Arian kingdoms that did not support the papacy - the Heruli, the Vandals, and the Ostrogoths - when the Pope came into power with an army about 538, one of the first things he did was he sent his armies to fight against these kingdoms that would not recognize his authority and did not agree with their theology. And they were destroyed. And that's why you don't see the Ostrogoths and the Vandals and the Heruli anymore. It's because those kingdoms were uprooted just as it said.

But, up until then, it had ten horns - three of those horns were uprooted. That happened between 493 and 538. What time? The last date: 493 to 538. I want you to make a mental note of that. It says it would be diverse from or different from the other kingdoms. It's diverse in that it's not just a government, it's a religion. The Roman church has got about 1.2 billion members at the time of this recording. I just checked the figures - there are about 2.2 billion Christians in the world today, because you add the Protestants - but Catholics are the largest single group - Roman Catholics.

It goes on and tells us that this power would make war with and persecute the saints. What happened is, back in 2000, the Pope, John Paul II, had a year of jubilee and, during that year of jubilee, the church publicly apologized for the actions of the church in persecuting during the time of the inquisition.

It's a fact of history that there were great persecutions that took place. You can go to Europe - I’ve been there - they've taken me in churches and they say, 'Wanna see the dungeon?' And you can go to the dungeon - they say, 'Here's the torture chambers' - and they have these implements of torture on display in the basements of the churches. And so, it's a pretty clear fact of history that it would make war. And this is what it says in Revelation 13, that it would "Make war with the saints, and to overcome them." They had to go underground during that time.

British historian William Edward Lecky wrote "That the church of Rome has shed more innocent blood than any other institution that has ever existed among mankind, will be questioned by no Protestant who has a competent knowledge of history." It goes on to tell us that "God's people (the saints) would be given into its hand for a period of time." What is that period of time? It says "A time and times and the dividing of time." That's three and a half years. "power was given" - look in Revelation 13:5 - "power was given unto him to continue forty and two months." And this is a period of time.

Now, I told you the starting date - 538 is when he finally secured his power. And so we're going to look at that. If you go from 538, 1260 years - that's a time - remember, in Bible prophecy, a day equals what?

>>A year.

>>You find that in Ezekiel 4:6 and Numbers and Luke. You find several passages that teach us that's a principle. If you go from the starting point of 538, in 538 the Roman Emperor Justinian left town, he gave the Pope an army, the Pope was the supreme ruler, they began to use force to compel people to believe. Did Jesus ever endorse that we use armies to get converts? And threaten with death or persecute? No, He said, 'Whosoever will, come' - it's to be free. It's not to be compulsory.

Now here you've got - this is actually a mosaic of Constantine the legally recognized supremacy of the Pope began in 538 A.D. When there went into effect a decree of Emperor Justinian, making the bishop of Rome" - better known as the Pope - to be "head over all the churches," - how did the leader of the Christian church get to Rome? Didn't the early counsels of the church happen in Jerusalem? You ever wondered about that? "Making the bishop of Rome head over all the churches, the definer of doctrine, and the corrector of heretics."

You can also read in the history of the Christian church, "Vigilius...ascended the papal chair (538 A.D.) under the military protection of Belisarius." Ad the date is pretty well established. You start with 538, then it says you go 1260 years - 42 months - same time period - a time, a time, and half a time - that time period is a very important time period and it's going to reach unto something happening. Revelation 13:3, it says, "...one of the heads as it were wounded to death:" - by the sword. What does the sword represent?

>>The Bible.

>>The Word of God. And the Word of God began to get printed again in the language of the people. They started seeing some of the inconsistencies. That's when the Protestant Reformation started in the 1500s. But, finally, they lost their political power. It says there was a deadly wound but the wound would be healed and all the world would wonder after the beast.

Alright, so how did this happen? You've heard of Napoleon Bonaparte? He's sweeping across Europe, had great control, he conquered Italy - one of the things that he did is he didn't really like that the church in Rome was not supporting his empire. You know, he declared himself to be the emperor. They had too much influence. You've probably heard of the French Revolution - and so the murder of a Frenchman in Rome gave them the excuse for him to send his general, Berthier, into Rome, he arrested the Pope, he abolished the papal government - that happened in 1798, exactly 1,260 years after 538. But it said the deadly wound would be healed and all the world would wonder after the beast.

Another character - characteristic we learned, it said this beast power would be guilty of blasphemy. Blasphemy, by definition, there are two things. It means, first of all, one claiming the powers or prerogatives that belong to God; claiming to be able to forgive sins. And so, does this beast power meet those two definitions? April 30, 1922, Pope Pius said, "You know that I am the holy father, the representative of God on Earth, the vicar of Christ, which means I am God on the earth." That's an official statement - a declaration of the Pope. Pope Leo XIII, "The supreme teacher in the church is the Roman pontiff. Union of minds, therefore, requires, together with a perfect accord in the one faith, complete submission and obedience of will to the church and to the Roman pontiff, as to God Himself." See, Protestants, typically, would categorize that as blasphemy. One more you can read in 2 Thessalonians, Paul said in the last days this antichrist power will sit in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.


>>Now that - the temple of God doesn't mean Jewish temple. The Bible says, 'Don't you know that you are the temple of God?' It means there would be a religious power that would sit over the people of God claiming prerogatives that belong to God. So, when we pray, do we need to go through the Pope? Do we need to go through the priests? Do we need to go through Mary? Or, through the Holy Spirit, do we go directly to Jesus? And through Jesus, we go to the Father, right?




>>And so things changed in the church that separated it from the Bible and it obscured the truth. That's why this is also very important - "so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God."

Second definition of blasphemy was claiming to be able to forgive sins. Well, if you look in the writings of the priesthood - these are not things that I’ve written - it says that "God Himself is obliged to abide by the judgment of his priests." - God is 'obliged' to abide by the judgment of his priests - "and either not to pardon or to pardon, according as they refuse or give absolution." So the priests decide whether or not God is going to pardon a person. Now that is a very convenient teaching because it means you can't be forgiven without going through the papal hierarchy. The Bible says you can go directly - I can come boldly before the throne of grace through Jesus.


>>And, you know, don't misunder-- - there are good people - and even some of the leadership, I think, don't understand these things. I’ve had priests that have come to or watched these programs and said, 'Pastor Doug, for the first time in my life my eyes are opened.' And they came to Christ and they understood the Bible. And so, you know, you've got to preach the truth.


>>And you're not always going to make friends when you preach the truth, but the truth is the truth and it doesn't change. Jesus said, 'I’m the same yesterday, today, and forever.'


>>Oh, by the way, I didn't finish that quote. It goes on to say, "The sentence of the priest precedes, and God subscribes" - He follows the sentence of the priests. It says it would go on - this beast power would think to change times and laws. Did you know that in the official writings of the Catholic church - and you've got the reference there on the screen - it says, "The Pope has power to change times to abrogate laws and to dispense with all things, even the precepts of Christ." Tthe teachings of Christ.

I - whenever I go play racquetball in Sacramento, I drive by this Catholic congregation - very nice - and they've got a Ten Commandments outside. I appreciate that. And I stopped one time to look at it - a beautiful piece of art - they don't have the second commandment. It's been removed. What they did is they divided the tenth commandment - check for yourself - they divided the tenth commandment, they took out the one about idolatry so that they'd still have the number ten. They simply say, 'Thou shalt not have other gods' - they skip over the whole thing about making idols and bowing down.

Now, friends, as I share these things with you, the main thing I want you to do is say, 'What does the Bible say?' Did God foretell what was going to happen in the world? Now I’ve talked a little bit tonight about Catholicism in prophecy. On another night I'll be talking about, you know, Revelation 17 it says that woman that rides the beast is called the mother of harlots. So she has daughters. What does a woman represent?

>>A church.

>>A church. It means there's others and, because she's a harlot, her daughters are also unfaithful. And here, we're finding out that there's a lot of other Christians in other denominations - daughters that have come out of the mother church - that are also unfaithful. So I’m going to be talking - because prophecy talks about a lot of unfaithfulness that has taken place in prophecy. Jesus wants to bring His people back to the Word before He returns, and that's why we proclaim these messages.

The idea of prophecy is redemptive. This isn't about building up or putting down one institution over another, it's about saying, 'What are the teachings of Jesus? What is the truth that will save us from our sins?'


>>Christ gave us these prophecies, not to intrigue us, but to be redemptive - to save us. And there's a lot of dear people that are mixed up in false teachings. And with every truth that a person learns - Jesus said the truth will set you free - it liberates - it saves - it helps people to see the light and to understand the character of God better. Can you say 'Amen'?

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