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appears logical but is it really biblical?
There is no contesting the sordid and barbarous history of Ecclesiastical Rome. Who can deny the grotesque crusades, the inquisition, and the St. Bartholomew massacre. And yes, the Bible plainly reveals that there will be a replication of the international church-and-state rule of the Middle Ages, along with its train of "intolerance and persecution." 2 But could it be that we have been mistaken about the Papacy's role for the future? Is it possible that we have misunderstood the biblical record concerning the identity of the 666? Could it be that the 666 is not the pope after all?
Hopefully you don't mind your views being challenged. Well, we shouldn't. Inspiration tells us that: "We have many lessons to learn and many, many to unlearn." 3 Furthermore, says the servant of the Lord, "There is need of a much closer study of the word of God; especially should Daniel and the Revelation have attention as never before in the history of our work. We may have less to say in some lines, in regard to the Roman power and the papacy; but we should call attention to what the prophets and apostles have written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit of God." 4
Interesting? Why don't we re-
study the subject—although in
brief—the Scriptural record in regards to the subject. We need to know the truth so we can be prepared.
The First Beast
In Daniel Chapter 7, we are told of the four ancient world powers—Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome (Pagan and Papal)—lion, bear, leopard, and non-descript beast, respectively. In (Revelation Chapter 13, verses 1 -10), we have the description of a ten-horned, seven-headed crowned beast, who came out of the sea having the mouth of a lion, the feet of a bear, body of a leopard, and the ten horns of the Non-descript beast. “And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon
gave him his power, and his seat,
and great authority. And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. And they worshiped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshiped the beast, saying, who is like unto the beast? Who is able to make war with him?"
The composite make-up of the beast is a faithful witness that he is a descendant and melting pot of the ancient empires. The beast's forty-two month period (verse 5)-1260 years-538 A.D. to 1798 A.D. falls in the time of ecclesiastical or Papal Rome; whereas its wounded state (Rev. 13:3), symbolizes it during the Protestant period. In other words, the beast represents three periods: The period prior to the wound, the period during the wound, and the period after the wound is healed. Thus this conglomerate beast covers the history of the Papacy and and Protestantism.
Moreover, the ten horns or kings of Daniel's fourth symbolical