The Dragon and the first beast, the one out of the sea, set out on a pogrom. Pogrom is not a misspelling, but means a concerted effort to eliminate an ethnic group. In our experience the most accessible example is the Jewish Holocaust by the Germans during World War 2. In mid-August of 2017 CBS News aired a report of the Down Syndrome rates in Iceland the point being that Down Syndrome as been almost eradicated from that island nation. Those being born with this disease were often “missed” by errors in lab tests. So the Jews in mid-20th Century Europe and Down syndrome children in 21st Century are targeted for elimination.
There are clear differences between those two groups and those who through their actions did the elimination. The bottom line there, though, is that certain people groups are not valued, are feared, or are hated. The stronger groups exercise their power to eliminate the weaker.
Revelation 13 makes it very clear that the Dragon and the Beast One are on a mission to eliminate the followers of God the Father and Jesus Christ his son. That pogrom is the gist of the first 10 verses in this chapter.
This chapter though has a second half. Satan is not just interested in destroying those humans who are allied to God. It is crucial to remember that Satan wants what God has and frustrating praise of God is only a beginning. Satan wants allegiance. The worship which humanity can give is not merely to be turned away from God, but turned to Satan.
So if those on earth who have watched and taken part in the destruction of Jesus followers think they remain independent they are in for a rude awakening. In Satan’s scheme allegiance is paramount. Independence and self-government are entirely out of the question. He may offer it, but he will never provide it. The second half of chapter 13 will unpack this narrative.
Refresher: The world wide government
One ruler for the world is taught in the scriptures. Look below at verse 7.
7 …And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, 8 and all who dwell on earth will worship it… (Revelation 13:7–ESV)
The first half of the 13th chapter tells of the world wide government. The Dragon and first beast have established a global unit of governance. It will be geo-political, human, or otherwise, but is not nationalistic. There will be no toleration of white nationalist or black power movements. Should they try they will be dealt with like Tienanmen Square.
Truth be told by this stage in world history humanity will have come to a place where they want one strong enough to deal with the troubles that have befallen the earth. Run back in your mind to the end of Revelation 6. At the conclusion of that chapter the earth itself had begun to be dismantled. Rich and poor, small and great had run to caves and mountains seeking a refuge from the wrath of God. This will be the dominant theme of rebellious humanity. Hopeless against the “one seated on the throne, and…the lamb” will be the default concept.
So when the power of Satan and Beast One arrives hope will seem to dawn anew. At least that may be what a number of them think they have in the demonic duo.