Chapter 1. The Two Horned Beast.
It was August 2. Iraqi tanks exploded into Kuwait - crushing the government, and altering the lives of terrified millions. Nations trembled. Many are turning to democracy. Will a one-world government make a heaven on earth? Will terrorism, like some giant octopus engulf the world? Or will World War Three end it all!
We're going to go on an incredible journey behind the scenes and take a shocking glimpse.
Many eyes are on the U.S. It's still the greatest bulwark of freedom in our world of chaos.
Veteran news commentator Walter Cronkite, after grimly surveying some foreign crisis spoke of the United States. "It is," he said, "the last best hope of mankind."
But something's happening in our country. Something strange. Things are changing. Have you noticed the trends? Bullets ripped through the President's head and neck causing him to slump in the back of his official limousine. The nation was stunned. President Kennedy was dead.
My stomach was in knots as I rode home that afternoon. People wandered about the streets, or went home in silence. Some wept. Since the early '60s assassinations, demonstrations, frauds, and hoaxes have come upon us with rapid fire.
"On the night of March 13, 1964, thirty-eight people looking out their window in a quiet, respectable neighborhood of New York City, watched a murder that took a full half hour to commit, and did nothing about it!
Thirty-eight people watched Catherine Genovese being stabbed again and again in front of her home, and didn't care. They just leaned out their windows as if watching the late show, waited till it was over, and went back to bed!" (1)
But attitudes are changing. Today people are angry at crime. One thief who grabbed a lady's purse on a city street was chased down by angry onlookers and beaten half to death! Attitudes are being shaped by the horrors of our times. We're going to go behind the scenes now and discover the documented story of the great crisis that is stealing upon our land.
It all starts on a stark, rocky island. Into the horizon stretches the vast expanse of the murky deep. One lone figure rest on a barren ledge of sheer rock. His name, John the Revelator. He's rapt in vision. What he sees is fantastic! Strange beasts. Clashing armies. Nations rising.
It's no surprise that the greatest nation on earth should be mentioned in prophecy. What John sees portends events shaping up in the United States that most definitely will affect you!
Watch closely now as the scene unfolds.
"And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon." Revelation 13:11. A "beast" in prophecy represents a "kingdom." Daniel 7:23
When a beast comes up out of the "sea," it is represented in a prophecy as rising amid "many peoples and multitudes." (a highly populated area). Revelation 17:15. To come out of the "earth" is just the opposite. So here we have a nation that is springing up out of a wilderness are. Instead of overthrowing other powers to establish itself, this nation would rise in territory previously unoccupied. It would be a country that's discovered, not conquered. Differing from the often blood soaked nations of Europe, it would spring up quietly, peacefully, "like a lamb."
Can you guess what nation of the New World arose into power, giving promise of strength and greatness, that would fit this description?
Sure! The United States.
It sprang up like a plant from the ground. A prominent author of the past century speaks of "the mystery of her coming forth from vacancy," and adds, "like a silent seed we grew into an empire." (2)
"'And he had two horns like a lamb.'
The lamb-like horns indicate youth, gentleness, and represent civil and religious freedom. The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution reflect these noble views. Because of these very principles, our nation became great. The oppressed and persecuted from all lands have looked to the U.S. with hope." (3)
But the beast with the lamb-like horns "spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed; And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men." Revelation 13:12, 13
Keep your eyes open. As the drama unfolds, you will see miracles of a most amazing nature!
"...saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword and did live." Revelation 13:12-14.
Can you imagine the U.S. doing anything like that?!
How could it possibly happen?
The lamb-like horns and then the dragon voice present a change of personality. A real change! The speaking of this country as a "dragon" denotes the use of force. This principle, as we shall see, was used by the Leopard-like beast (the first beast) of Revelation 13, which enforced religious observances by law! Such action by the U.S. government would be directly contrary to its grand principles of religious freedom. The Constitution provides that "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."
"Speak as a dragon" - our nation? Do you hear it stirring? Have you noticed attitudes becoming more intolerant and angry lately? Angry at crime? Angry at political, religious and social corruption?
In view of the horrifying trends of the time, it's understandable why the nation is to "speak" that way. In one year, Americans spent $4 billion of pornography. Divorce affects tens of millions of homes, wrecking lives - and breaking hearts.
Mass murders, neglect of the aged, abuse of women and even of babies, sicken the heart. Men possessed, are taking the lives of men, women, and little children.
Millions of Americans, hooked on marijuana, "crack", heroin, and other chemicals, peer at the world through differing degrees of "goony eyes", and further appall society with their resultant behavior and crimes.
A recent report to the Federal Communication Commission states "Between the ages of 5 and 14 the average American child witnesses the violent destruction of thirteen thousand human beings on television" (4) A U.S. Senate subcommittee revealed that in one decade violence witnessed on T.V. skyrocketed and delinquency in real life grew nearly 200%! (5)
Video movies too horrible to mention fill the living rooms and minds of young and old.
Prostitutes, homosexuals, and drug addicts, share AIDS and ARC (AIDS Related Complex) with the innocent. The poor sufferers give groans of despair as they perish in ever greater numbers. A group of them, LIFE Magazine reported, lying on the floor in a circle, and summoning some of their last remaining strength - laughed in sequence. (6)
In the words of one commentator, "Surely America stumbles headlong toward the final precipice. Tripped on the downward road of immorality, it plunges with ever-increasing momentum toward the point of no return." (7)
Crime doubles every ten years.
What about the economy?
The country is broke. It has gotten so far in debt that many wonder what will happen next. Many retired couples have either lost their food stamps and medic cards, or have had to divorce and live our of wedlock to keep them.
Political and religious corruption have caused even the constitution to come under attack! People are angry. The nation is angry. The shifting of values and anger of the times (in speedy fulfillment of prophecy) are echoed in words blurted out by a Jesuit priest, "I just don't understand the reverence which everybody here seems to pay to the 'Americun Constitushun.' I want to hear some American get up and shout, Give us justice. Give us decency. And to . . . with the American Constitution."
Is it any wonder that our nation will "speak as a dragon?" Little wonder that ministers across that land, in an effort to abort national doom, move millions to political action. The feeling is that something must be done. Leaders of the "electronic church" launched a campaign to arouse 50 million Christians! There's a tremendous drive on to unite forces for the common good.
Pat Robertson, the preacher who founded the 700 Club, and who himself aspired to the very top of the political ladder, said, "Unless Christians desire a nation and a world reordered to the humanistic/hedonistic model, it is absolutely vital that we take control of the U.S. government away from the Trilateral Commission and the Council on Foreign Relations." He speaks of turning to God "to galvanize Christians to political action" (8)
U.S. News & World Report declared, "A political holy war without precedent is in full swing in this country." (9)
The feeling is being spread that only if our nation comes back to God can we improve our sorry state of affairs. Leaders are saying that this can be accomplished if Christians unite. "Robert Grant, leader of Christian Voice urged: "If Christians unite, we can do anything. We can pass any law or any amendment. And that's exactly what we intend to do." On nation-wide T.V. he declared: "We can do anything, we can amend the Constitution. We can elect a president. We can change or make any law in the land. And it behooves us to do it. If we have to live under law, as well we should, we should live under moral and Godly law." (10) This is not the opinion of just one man.
In reply the executive director, H. Edward Rowe, wrote, 'Legislation and proclamations by Presidents to urge it - yes!"
The dynamics make us wonder little that nation-wide papers and media messages plea to the masses that "It is the responsibility of government to decree the establishment of the national observance of Sunday." And that, "There will be no relief from mounting economic disaster until a national Sunday law is strictly enforced."!
It's not surprising that in a hearing of the South Carolina legislature, demands by State Representative Anderson himself for a Sunday law to improve the state of society brought uproarious applause. Who can wonder that the United States President has revealed his willingness to do what no other U.S. president has been able to do - support legislation which would help collapse the separation of church and state!
"...and he spake as a dragon. And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him." Revelation 13:11,12
We haven't seen anything yet! Be prepared to learn some shocking facts.
Here's the big question now - who's the first beast?