Revelation 13:11-18 / The False Prophet

Posted on January 11, 2016

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This is the thirty-sixth in a series of verse-by-verse expositions of the book of Revelation. This message was delivered at Hillcrest Baptist Church on January 10, 2016. This message deals with the emergence of the false prophet. This post contains an audio recording of my message, along with my sermon notes. Please note that the sermon notes are not necessarily a full transcript. ***NOTE*** There is no audio. Unfortunately, I forgot to hit record. Notes only.

SERMON AUDIO:

 

SERMON NOTES:

V.11:
This is the false prophet.

  • Revelation 16:13
  • Revelation 19:20
  • Revelation 20:10

Like Satan, he is a counterfeit. A counterfeit Holy Spirit. He will promote the Antichrist’s power and convince the world to worship him as God. This second beast will be the chief proponent of satanic religion. Antichrist will primarily be a political and military leader, but the false prophet will be a religious leader. Politics and religion will unite in a worldwide religion of worshiping the Antichrist.

He comes from “out of the earth”. This is likely a reference to the abyss, where some of the demons are imprisoned. However, his power will likely be inferior to the Antichrist’s. We know this because we see the antichrist pictured as a beast with 10 horns, whereas this false prophet is seen as a lamb with just 2 horns. He may appear as a lamb, but unlike Christ, he will multiply sin, not take it away.

Perhaps Jesus had this false prophet in mind when He made this statement.

  • Matthew 7:15

The fact that he speaks like a dragon, tells us that he will be satan’s mouthpiece.

V.12:
Like the antichrist, he draws his power from Satan. He will establish a worldwide reputation as a miracle worker. As already stated, we need to remember that he is a counterfeit, as are his miracles.

The reference in this verse is likely a very carefully crafted counterfeit resurrection. Satan can never be God, but he will imitate Him every chance he gets.

The antichrist will be waging war against all believers. His mission will be to destroy all who follow Christ.

The false prophet will offer the people something else to worship in the place of Christ, the antichrist. He will be to the antichrist what the Holy Spirit is to Jesus Christ. The world will find the religious leader they’ve been looking for, one who will unite the. World’s religions.

V.13:
This particular false sign, fire from heaven, is an imitation of the two witnesses. However, it will convince many people.

Vv.14-15:
Throughout the Bible we see miracles performed as proofs of God’s power, love, and authority. But here we see counterfeit miracles performed to deceive. In fact, many have been and will be deceived by counterfeit miracles. Jesus warns us of this.

  • Matthew 24:24

This is also a reminder of Pharaoh’s magicians, who duplicated Moses’ signs in Egypt.

True signs and miracles point us to Jesus Christ, but miracles alone can be deceptive. That is why we must ask with respect to each miracle we see: Is this consistent with what God says in the Bible? In this instance, the false prophet orders the people to worship a statue in honor of the first beast—a direct violation of the second commandment.

  • Exodus 20:4-6

This is why we must “test the spirits” against Scripture.

  • 1 John 4:1

Using the Bible as our source of truth will keep us from being deceived by false signs, however convincing they appear to be. Christians should know God’s word, and be determined that any teaching that contradicts It is false.

Vv.16-17:
This mark is a counterfeit of the Holy Spirit’s seal, received by believers.

  • 2 Corinthians 1:21-22
  • Ephesians 1:13

Without the mark of the beast, no one can buy or sell. Without the mark, people will not be able to attain the daily necessities of life. This sets the antichrist up as the provider for the people. It is he who will enable them to survive.

As Christians sealed by the Spirit, we often acknowledge that The Lord is our provider, that without Him, we would have nothing. In fact, Jesus teaches us to pray for our daily bread. This mark of the beast therefore, is just another imitation of God.

V.18:
Much has been made of the mark of the beast, and there has been a lot of speculation about certain technologies that it may encompass. This is all pointless and idle speculation. There are many things which have been labeled as the mark of the beast, including bar codes and implanted microchips. Many Christians have gotten quite worked up over this issue, thinking that the mark of the beast is upon us. They make bold statements that they will not receive this Mark. People get worked up over this simply because they are ignorant of Scripture.

If you are a born again believer in Christ, you won’t have to say no to the mark, because you won’t be around when it is implemented. The mark of the beast will not be implemented until the second half of the tribulation. This is well after the rapture of the saints, so let’s put aside this foolish ignorance, and actually learn a little something about God’s Word, before we get ourselves worked up into a frenzy over something that will never affect us!

The number of the beast, of course, is the number of man. It falls one short of God’s perfect number, 7. The antichrist, the most powerful human the world will ever know, will still be a man. . . Imperfect. . . Short of God.

What or who is intended by this remains a mystery. Whether or not the antichrist will literally identify with this number (I.e. His name being the numerical equivalent), remains to be seen. But he who has wisdom and understanding, will see that all the enemies of God are numbered and marked out for destruction. The term of their power will soon expire, and that all nations shall submit to our King of righteousness and peace.

  • Revelation 19:15-16
  • Romans 14:11

Those who follow false prophets are being led straight to hell. Godly wisdom is needed to spot the fakes, because they can be very convincing. This is why we need a proper understanding of God’s Word.

  • 2 Timothy 2:15

But none of that is possible without a saving faith in Christ.

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Posted in: Eschatology, Sermons