Station 1: Dragon declares war on the church
In chapter 12 the book of Revelation shifts gears. John tells us of his vision of a woman in labor. Nearby and on the hunt was Satan, named the Dragon. He was waiting to catch and kill that child. Nice, huh? To the Dragon’s dismay this child was snatched to heaven right from under his jaws. This child represents Jesus. This can be deduced from the language used in the 5th verse1. There we are told that this child will rule with a rod of iron. That relates to the Old Testament references of Psalm 2:9 and a passage later on in this book Revelation 19:15.
After Satan’s fury over losing the child a war in the heavens developed. The archangel Michael and the angels he leads disposed Satan and his group of the fallen angels, the demons. They were dispatched from the heavens to the earth. Here is one among many of Satan’s failures, a theme that we do well to notice.
John heard a loud voice in heaven proclaiming trouble on the those living on the earth. Bad leaders cause bad problems. This is only compounded if the bad leader is Satan.
The first thing the Dragon did after arriving in his new place was chase the woman. Since he lost the child maybe he could harm her, but she got away. Satan fails again. That failure and its accompanying rage resulted in a proclamation of war on her offspring: the church.
Station 2: The beast out of the sea
The Dragon wanted to be God Almighty, but he failed in that venture. Having failed he began to interject himself into the world of men. He is going to set things up so that men worship him and his creatures in place of God. If he cannot be God maybe he can steal from him. So the Dragon arranges for a non-man creature to rise from the sea. The details of this are in the first half of Revelation 13. He is described as a beast with 7 heads and 10 horns. That description is important as we will see in station 4 of this timeline. It will help us characterize who it is in that part of this book.
This entity was worshiped partly because of a counterfeit. One of the seven heads of this beast had a wound which was to have killed it, but it lived. That is Satan’s mimic of Jesus’ real death and real resurrection. People the world over are to learn of Christ’s resurrection and worship God because of that. Satan successfully co-opts some of this. Humans gawk over this and worship as a result.
It is in this section, see Revelation 13:72, where the one-world government is set up. Its center is designated Babylon. Whether this represents a real, renewed Babylon of old or is a figurative description of another place I am not willing to suppose. Key, though, is that Satan will have an earthly kingdom with his own characters at the center.
Station 3: The beast out of the earth
The next thing to be installed is the false prophet. This character I term Beast 2 and we see him established in the second half of Revelation 13. He rises from the earth and through this and his description I believe this is a man, a human. The beast out of the sea was not human, but people are better at listening to things like them so Satan gives humanity one. In the last verse of Revelation 13 he is given the designation of 666.
It is important that we recognize from this passage that this Beast is a subordinate one. He is a “junior beast” if you will. In verses 12 and 14 we read that he exercises his authority in the presence of the first beast. He is allowed to do miracles, make signs the scripture calls it, deriving his abilities from Beast 1, the “sea-beast.”
Also note that he makes an image of Beast 1 and then that image is given a life or probably it should be called a pseudo-life. A global initiative is soon laid down where each person must accept a number that permanently assigns them allegiance to this character. I believe that this is a man who wants world dominance and in exchange for delivering worship and allegiance to the Dragon and Beast 1 is given extraordinary powers to become a human world-emperor. What Hitler and Napoleon and Alexander the Great could not establish he succeeds at. Babylon is his seat of power and the entire world becomes enmeshed in Babylonian dominance.