War with the Beast
By Terry James
A time is coming, according to Bible prophecy, when the world will experience the most powerful leader to have ever lived upon the planet. He will far surpass in military capability any president of the United States of America who has yet held the reins of power.
The people of planet earth will literally become awestruck as they witness his exploits. The prophecy regarding the amazement over this future military man-marvel is seen in the following:
And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? (Revelation 13: 4)
We have looked many times at this future tyrant John calls through Holy Spirit Inspiration “the beast.”
He is the first of two beasts that John, through his Revelation vision, sees coming into world history. This beast will make his appearance during the period Daniel the prophet indicated will be the seventieth week that will wrap up premillennial human history. That will be the last seven years leading up to the return of Christ at Armageddon (Revelation 19:11). We know him better, perhaps, as Antichrist.
It is good to think for a bit on that Scripture about this man-beast. The Bible says the question will be asked by the populations of the world–who will actually worship him: Who is able to make war with him?”
In other words, it will look to everyone who witnesses Antichrist’s military exploits and other miraculous accomplishments that he is a god. It will appear, the prophecy says immediately preceding the question, that he is killed by a wound in his head and comes back to life. This is obviously, from our understanding and perspective today, a false resurrection. However, the world at that time of great delusion won’t see it that way.
The question “Who can make war with him?” will be one asked with mesmerized stares of eyes more glazed and glistening than were those as recorded on the black-and-white films of Hitler’s worshipers during the 1930s.
There is no such leader with that kind of power anywhere in view today. There are many, many military leaders and their armies who can and do make war with anyone and everyone in this present geopolitical climate. That future beast will be indeed an animal of unprecedented military capability and authority.
Besides the United States military–still the most feared on the planet despite the current president’s efforts to, in my view, greatly diminish its strength–Russia and China continue to build tremendous war-making machines. Iran, Turkey, and others constantly aspire to more powerful militaries. There will have to occur massive changes in the military power structures of the world to bring about this singular most monstrous war-making leader, against whom no one is thought to be able to fight.
We often conjecture about what happens to the United States. Why isn’t it in Bible prophecy? If there, it certainly is in a greatly changed configuration, because its military is nowhere in sight, prophetically speaking. We believe that the militaries of Russia, China, and many others, such as Iran and Turkey, are in prophetic view. We believe we see many of these within the Gog-Magog assault into the Middle East toward Israel as given in Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39.
Our own view within the pre-Trib camp concerning the Rapture holds that the great changes needed to reconfigure things in alignment with end times Bible prophecy will unfold during the post-Rapture era. At least, that is my understanding at this point in time.
After that great Rapture event, the United States might fit into being aligned with those nation-entities that stand on the sideline as the Gog-Magog attack begins and simply make a diplomatic protest.
Sheba, and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions thereof, shall say unto thee, Art thou come to take a spoil? hast thou gathered thy company to take a prey? to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take a great spoil? Have you come to take a great spoil? (Ezekiel 38:13)
At any rate, the coalition that assaults into the Holy Land environs will be powerful, and unopposed–by human agencies, that is. God, of course, will completely destroy all but one-sixth of that Gog-Magog army in that future attack. After that destruction, only the great “kings of the East” juggernaut will remain as a force with which to be reckoned.
So, how does the great beast of Revelation 13 accumulate such awesome strength as to have the whole world ask: “Who is able to make war with him?”
In my own cogitations upon the matter–and it is supposition to be sure–there is somehow a dividing line set between the occidental and oriental worlds. This is true to this point in history, I think. But, in that day there seems to be a supernatural demarcation–the Euphrates River or thereabouts. When it is “dried up” as given in Revelation chapter 16, the kings of the East–led no doubt by China–will invade at the time of Armageddon, it seems. At that time the demons appointed especially for that moment will be released from their holding places and will supernaturally indwell those hordes from the orient. These will kill one-third of earth’s inhabitants, the prophecy tells us. However, all of this will happen later, at the very end of the Tribulation–Daniel’s seventieth week.
At that earlier time of the Gog-Magog attack, I believe that Antichrist, resident within the nations who will send a note of protest (Ezekiel 38:13), will understand Bible prophecy to the point that he will think slyly to let the Gog-Magog forces go to their destruction by the God of Heaven. He will then move into the military power vacuum and build his mighty army–an army supernaturally enhanced by the dark powers of Satan. Again, it is the view of most who hold to the pre-Trib view of the Rapture and to pre-Millennialism that this beast–Antichrist–is to come out of the geographical area now known as the European Union. He will come from the people who were at the heart of the ancient Roman Empire -the people who destroyed Jerusalem and the Jewish Temple in AD 70. I do not believe the beast will be a Muslim, although I do believe his ethnic make-up will be from the area of ancient Assyria. He will, nonetheless, I’m convinced, have been born and raised in the area of Europe, likely somewhere near Rome.
Today there is movement toward beginning a military establishment in that very region. The following excerpt is interesting in that regard.
The leaders of the Czech Republic and Hungary say a “joint European army” is needed to bolster security in the EU. They were speaking ahead of talks in Warsaw with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. They dislike her welcome for Muslim migrants from outside the EU. Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban said “we must give priority to security, so let’s start setting up a joint European army”. The UK government has strongly opposed any such moves outside Nato’s scope. The Czech, Hungarian, Polish and Slovak leaders are coordinating their foreign policy as the “Visegrad Group.” (“Czechs and Hungarians call for EU army amid security worries,” BBC News, 8/27/16)
With the UK (Britain, possibly “the merchants of Tarsish”) leaving the EU in the so-called Brexit, the way might be clear to generate great interest in such a powerful military–absent NATO–as the beast can one day build upon. One thing sure, such a military monster will one day be constructed.
It will take the Lord Himself, returning from Heaven with the saints of glory, to bring Antichrist’s ability to make war to an end. Thankfully, Jesus Christ will do so. I believe our Lord will end the beast’s war-making capability with the same words He used that day on the stormy Sea of Galilee.”Peace. Be still.”
Even so, come Lord Jesus.