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Daniel 2 & Daniel 7 by Robert Dean
Series:Revelation (2004)
Duration:55 mins 46 secs

10 Toes, 10 Kings and the 4th Beast; Revelation 6:1-2

Revelation 6:1 NASB "Then I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, 'Come'."

At this point John is to observe another vision. What he is going to see is the first series of judgments called the seal judgments and in these judgments which cover the first 21 months of the Tribulation there will be six consecutive judgments poured out on human history. These are judgments unlike anything that has been seen in human history. Each seal reveals a subsequent judgment. The scroll itself represents a title deed to the planet as He is going to come at the end to receive the kingdom from God.

Revelation 6:2 NASB "I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer."

The first seal refers to a rider on a white horse. Each of rhe first four seals is represented as a rider on a white horse. The rider is not a specific person it represents another judgment. This first rider rides a white horse—white is a picture in Scripture of righteousness. But this is not the Lord Jesus Christ who comes at the end of the Tribulation period riding on a white horse; this is a pseudo Christ or the Antichrist, the one who is a substitute Christ who comes. He is described in this section as a rider with a bow, indicating military power. He is given a crown that is the victor's wreath and he goes out conquering and to conquer. Conquering is not always done through military defeats, sometimes it is done through other means. This is a personification of the Antichrist's conquests.

So the Antichrist is a substitute or pseudo messiah. He is going to attempt to bring in world peace, end all the problems of mankind, and what he offers is a solution to man's problems that denies the basic problem. If we watch the news carefully, of we watch current events, and even go back into the middle of the 19th century, what we will observe is that especially since the end of the 1700s western civilisation has continuously worked at redefining man's basic problem as something other than sin. At the middle of the 1700s most people in the west believed that mankind was inherently depraved and corrupt. With the influence of Enlightenment ideas coming out of the 17th and 18th centuries there has been the influence of this idea that man is basically good. It influences society, it influences Christianity, it lays the groundwork for what becomes known as 19th century religious liberalism that came on the scene in the 1800s, and at the core is the idea that man is basically good and that if man is basically good he is perfectible. And if man is perfectible then society is perfectible and so it is the goal of government and the goal of the church to bring in this perfection by doing away with immorality, by doing away with what is perceived to be the social sins, and all of this fits this same utopic agenda. There are utopians who are secular, utopians who are religious, but ultimately any sort of utopic idea is functional atheism because it denies the reality of God and His Word, that man's basic problem isn't social, isn't environmental; his basic problem is sin and that we are all born dead in our sins and that the only solution comes through a relationship with Jesus Christ by putting our faith in Him at the cross, and then only through the Word of God and the Spirit of God can the corruption and the sin nature be managed and defeated as the Word of God is applied. The Antichrist provides a solution that is totally apart from God's Word and based on a false analysis.

The result of this is that God judges. One of the ways God judges is to give us over to our sin nature, as it were; He removes the restraints. In Romans chapter one we see that homosexuality and sexual perversion are all part of God's judgment. They are not what God will judge us for, they are God's judgment on a culture and on a society, and each time a society moves more and more in a direction against God then God gives them over to a further degree of depravity. This is the same thing that will happen in the Tribulation period. God will send them strong delusion that they shall believe the lie. You have to be able to spot the deception because the deception, the wolf in sheep's clothing, will come and large numbers of people will be deceived in the Tribulation period.

In 1898 a book came out by Samuel Anvers called Christianity and Antichristianity. He was writing about the future situation with the rise of the Antichrist and he made some incredibly perceptive comments.

"The choice of the Antichrist is not to be the choice of the rulers only, or of the popular leaders, the multitude being unwilling [it is not going to be the leaders in contrast to the people], it is the choice of the people, the direct or indirect expression of the popular will. It is the voluntary declaration of Christendom: 'We will not have this man rule over us; not this man but Barabbus'"…..

What he is saying is that when the Antichrist comes he will be approved and accepted by popular acclaim. The masses will love and adore him. It is not that some political system is going to put him in power but the people will turn to him and acclaim him as the one who will bring in a utopian society.

"…. We may know here that a democracy looking upon its leader as its representative willingly gives him a power even greater than the largest measure of its political prerogatives. The sovereign multitude, the people, which sees in their leader not so much a ruler who commands them as the one who is the exponent and executive of their will. That people yields to their ruler such a full and unreserved obedience as no despot could ever obtain. Democracy headed up in one who can sway its forces has such elements of aggression as no form of government hitherto existing has ever had. The laws and institutions are no longer reverenced as having sanctions when having gone through continual change after change after change…."

He says that when you have a government that changes the laws and the interpretation of laws over and over and over again it destroys any sense of stability in law itself.

"…. When various institutions are continually changed they have no root in the traditions or the love of the people…" In other words, the generations will forget what the founders wanted, because there are so many changes that it doesn't matter what the intent of the founders was. "… When rulers by popular election prove themselves incapable, when no surety or stability of legislation exists and all are uncertain and anxious as to the future then there arises a general cry for a man. In a general disintegration it is only about a man that men can rally. It is not about abstract principles or written constitutions, all cry for one with an inflexible will and a strong arm who can serve as a centre of unity and bring order out of confusion."

The point that he is making is that in the end-time scenario confusion and chaos in society and politics will reach such a point that it is into that vacuum of power that one will come, and people will willingly and gladly give him all authority to rule over them, and they will trade their freedom and their liberty for security. And that doesn't just happen in the Tribulation; that happens throughout history, but it will happen in its final form during the Tribulation period with this one who is called the Antichrist. Deception will be rampant.

He is given a wide variety of titles in the Scripture. He is called the little horn in Daniel 7:8, 9, 19-26; he is called the insolent king in Daniel 8:23; the prince who is to come in Daniel 9:26, 27; the one who makes desolate in Daniel 9:27; 11:31; Matthew 24:15; the man of lawlessness in 2 Thessalonians 2:3; the son of destruction in 2 Thessalonians 2:3; the lawless one in 2 Thessalonians 2:8; the beast in Revelation 11:7; the despicable person in Daniel 11:21; the strong-willed king in Daniel 11:36; the worthless shepherd in Zechariah 11:16-17.

The Antichrist rises to power during the transition between the Rapture and the beginning of Daniel's seventieth week. We will not see him as the Antichrist before the Rapture. The Scripture says that the next thing that happens is the blessed hope, and we are looking for Jesus' coming in the air for us. The Antichrist is not revealed until afterward but he begins to rise to power prior to Daniel's seventieth week and in the first half of Daniel's seventieth week is when he brings his power base together and establishes his empire. Daniel 9:27 NASB "And he will make a firm covenant with the many [Israel] for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the wing of abominations {will come} one who makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one who makes desolate." From the point in the middle of the week will be seen his full blown hostility to believers during that end-time Tribulation period.

Who is this man? He is the head of a confederation of western powers related to the revived Roman Empire during the Tribulation years. There were several critical visions given in the time of Daniel and that Daniel interpreted that help us to understand history. One of these occurred in Daniel chapter two. What is fascinating is that when Daniel is describing the image and he gets down to the lower calves and the feet he says that they were a combination of iron and clay among the ten toes. It is the ten toes that we want to focus on here. It is not a random concept because those ten toes are going to represent ten nations that we will see in several places in Scripture. The focus of this prophecy is on this final kingdom. One other point we ought to notice here is that as Daniel looks at this magnificent statue it looks at the kingdom of man as man wants to think about it—glorious and powerful and beautiful—and we have the whole history of mankind laid out in terms of these empires from Babylon to Rome. But the Roman empire is not one that is pictured as destroyed as the others are and there are elements of these other empires that feed into the subsequent empire, and the elements of that Roman empire continue today. Much of western civilisation's laws are predicated upon things that were developed in the Roman Empire. It is in a state of absence right now but that is what is depicted in the final part of the statue. As Daniel gives this vision and interprets this vision it gives us an outline to understand the subsequent prophecies that are given in Daniel.

The Antichrist rises to power following the confederation of ten nations. He will then assume control over the ten as an eleventh king. The ten are not removed but he is elevated over them and in the process it appears that there are three resisting and so he conquers them and includes them within his kingdom.

Daniel chapter seven represents these kingdoms seen in chapter two as four beasts. Now we are looking at these kingdoms from God's viewpoint: that man in independence from God is beastly, horrible. He has taken power out of control and he is destructive of God's purpose. So these ravenous, powerful beasts are used to depict these kingdoms. The fourth beast that shows up is terrible and it goes forth devouring and crushing and it is pictured with teeth of iron. That takes us back to the iron the statue related to the Roman Empire but this beast has ten horns. Those ten horns connect back to the ten toes in Daniel chapter two. Daniel 7:7 NASB "After this I kept looking in the night visions, and behold, a fourth beast, dreadful and terrifying and extremely strong; and it had large iron teeth. It devoured and crushed and trampled down the remainder with its feet; and it was different from all the beasts that were before it, and it had ten horns. [8] While I was contemplating the horns, behold, another horn, a little one, came up among them, and three of the first horns were pulled out by the roots before it; and behold, this horn possessed eyes like the eyes of a man and a mouth uttering great {boasts.}" Whenever we see the word "eyes" it speaks of knowledge. The mouth here speaks about the beast's arrogant claims of power.

The Antichrist is the little horn and he is going to subdue three of the horns in the process of gaining control over the ten. That is how he establishes his authority and establishes his kingdom. This is viewed as the revival of the Roman Empire and in the Roman Empire one of its characteristics was its emphasis on law. But Rome saw itself as independent from God and Caesar himself was later worshipped as God and this created some of the great conflicts between Christians and the Roman Empire because they had to sware allegiance to Caesar as God. If they refused to do that they were persecuted. The Romans crushed the world by developing this legal system that often dominated people and eventually it destroyed the empire from within because any government that redefines law on its own terms will ultimately destroy itself. As long as we are living in God's world we can't redefine reality. As soon as we redefine reality in terms of legal pronouncements then eventually there will be a destruction.

Daniel 7:19, 20 NASB "Then I desired to know the exact meaning of the fourth beast, which was different from all the others, exceedingly dreadful, with its teeth of iron and its claws of bronze, {and which} devoured, crushed and trampled down the remainder with its feet, and {the meaning} of the ten horns that {were} on its head and the other {horn} which came up, and before which three {of them} fell, namely, that horn which had eyes and a mouth uttering great {boasts} and which was larger in appearance than its associates."

The interpretation: Daniel 7:23 NASB "Thus he said: 'The fourth beast will be a fourth kingdom on the earth, which will be different from all the {other} kingdoms and will devour the whole earth and tread it down and crush it. [24] As for the ten horns, out of this kingdom ten kings will arise; and another will arise after them, and he will be different from the previous ones and will subdue three kings. [25] He will speak out against the Most High and wear down the saints of the Highest One, and he will intend to make alterations in times and in law; and they will be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time." He will take up a position that is directly antagonistic to God. He will oppress and persecute the saints and then will continue to make alterations in times and in law. He wants to re-establish things in terms of his own authority. He sets himself up as the ultimate arbiter of law and law does not come from elsewhere and so it is a rejection of God as the ultimate source of law. We live in a world today where we see this same spirit developing. It works itself where political institutions seek to establish legal solutions to man-defined problems in order to develop a utopic society.  

So in Daniel seven we see these ten horns arise and it is the little horn that is the beast, the Antichrist. There are several things in this chapter about the Antichrist. We learn that he rises to power from within this fourth empire which is made up of ten nations, ten kings, and that it is a revival of the old Roman Empire. These ten nations are already in place when he comes forward and he will take control over them. There is some unique quality about him that causes people to give him that authority and power. We learn that he is arrogant, he challenges the Most High with great and boastful words. He is specifically set against Christianity and against God. Then we learn that he will persecute Tribulation saints, primarily Jews in the Tribulation period. This also connect to Revelation 13:7, 8 where we are told that he is given authority over every tribe, people, language and nation. There will be true a global government, though short-lived. All the inhabitants of the earth, we are told, will worship the beast. In Revelation 13:16-18 we are told that he forces everyone small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive his mark so that no one can buy or sell unless he has it. He gains control of the world for only three and a half years. There is the rise to power to the time when he reaches his ultimate power half way through the Tribulation and then his worst period of tyranny is the last half of the Tribulation period. During that time he will precipitate a war that is so horrendous that Jesus said that if those days had not been cut short no one would survive, Matthew 24:22. He will seek to change the Jewish ceremonial calendar and will rule over the world.

Illustrations