QUOTATIONS FROM WATCHMAN, WHAT OF THE NIGHT?
(Cf. THIRD ANGEL'S MESSAGE)
From WWN6(95) - Exegesis of Revelation, Part 2, The Beast and the False Prophet, pp. 2-4:
The section of the prophecy of Revelation 13 which describes the first beast, can be divided in two parts: 1) A symbolic description of the beast itself and a brief overview of its history (vs. 1-4); and 2) What it was to do in the time period allotted (vs. 5-7). . . .
description and comment on the first beast is concluded, there is found a clause
that will be repeated several times in the ensuing revelation - them "that
dwell on the earth." (13:8, 12, 14-2x; 14:6; 17:2) Since the warning in
Chapter 12, was to the "inhabiters" (v. 12) of the earth, and since
the second beast comes "up out of the earth" (13:11), is this
phraseology to be restricted to the area prophetically designated the earth? Or
is to be given the concept which we give to earth - the whole planet? The
answer to this question will even affect the understanding of Revelation 14:6.
In the Greek
New Testament text of the United Bible Societies different Greek words are used
in the various verses in Revelation 12, 13, 14, and 17 for the word,
"dwell" in the clause, "that dwell on the earth." Only in
Chapter 13, is the Greek word the same for "dwell" in verses 8 and
14. However, in the Received Text (Textus Receptus), the same word for
is used consistently in Rev. 12:12; 13:8, 14; 14:6; and 17:2. If this is then
to be interpreted prophetically, it adds a different dimension to the
understanding of where the final events will be focused. Those "that dwell
on the earth" will "worship him (the beast)" (13:8). They will
be deceived into making an image to the beast (13:14). They will become
intoxicated with the wine of the harlot (17:2). (Italicized
(Italicized emphasis added.)
It would also appear when the "whole" earth is meant rather than its use as a prophetic symbol, the word, "dwell" is not used, but rather holos, meaning entire, is associated with the word, "earth." See 13:3.
connecting verses between the two "beasts" of Revelation 13, there is
both warning and admonition. "All that dwell on the earth shall
worship the first beast" with but one exception, those whose names are
"written in the book of life of the Lamb" do not do so (13:8).
Recognizing that the first beast represents the Papacy, then one criterion
which determines where our names are placed is our attitude toward Roman
Catholicism. This includes much more than mere Sunday observance. The
doctrine of the Trinity - basic in Romanism, the Eucharist, and other issues
enter the picture. Little wonder then that the admonition follows - "If
any man have an ear, let him hear." (13:9) (Italicized emphasis
(Italicized emphasis added.)
In Rev. 13:10 an unique comment is made - "Here is the patience and faith of the saints." It is found again in Revelation 14:12, and only in these two texts in Revelation. Do these serve as "brackets" for the revelation that is given between? If so, then this call to observe the steadfastness of "the saints" is associated with the activities of the second beast of chapter 13 and the giving of the Three Angels' Messages.
The second beast came "up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon." (13:11) Two things of importance need to be noted. The prophetic symbolism does not connect this beast with the other beasts - there is no common denominator, the multiple heads or horns which mark the other beast symbols are missing. Only two horns are noted. No prophetic or literal time factors are associated with this second beast. He doesn't speak as "the dragon," but simply "as a dragon."" His two horns are like the horns of a lamb." The symbolism combines the two representations which in Chapter 12 are pictured as in deadly conflict, the dragon and the Lamb.
This beast "exerciseth all the power (authority - exousia) of the first beast." Is this saying that its authority is derived from the same source as the first beast, or is it stating that its controlling influence is as extensive as was that of the first beast, or both? The evident time of prophetic emphasis for the second beast is after the deadly wound of the first beast "was healed." (v. 12) Is it then, that we are to consider the exercise of, and source for its authority? If so, the activities of this beast, as described in Chapter 13, would not find fulfillment until after 1929, when the deadly wound began to be healed. But when was it "healed"?
One of the
wonders which this beast performs is to make "fire come down from heaven
on the earth in the sight of men." (v. 13) This
beast is defined as "the false prophet." (19:20) The
allusion to fire coming down from heaven, being done by a prophet, calls to
mind, Elijah who is
determining the identity of this "beast power," we have given it two
In recognizing this "beast" as a religious power we must also recognize two other factors of prophecy. 1) As noted above, the prophetic emphasis in Revelation 13 is on the activities of the "false prophet" after the "deadly wound was healed." This extends the time element for the main thrust of "apostate" Protestantism well over 100 years from the above date (1844) set for its inception. 2) This religious force causes the "image" to be formed. (13:14) The "image" to the first beast would be religio-political even as the Papacy was and is. It must also be understood, that this "religious" power says to those "that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast." This clearly indicates that the political power through which the "image" will be formed is democratic, the electorate is asked to grant the authority. But the "life" of this image is given to it by the "false prophet." (13:15)
Penalties for failure to come into line are twofold: 1) The "false prophet" initiates economic sanctions (13:16-17). 2) The created "image" of the union of church and state - issues the death decree (13:15).
verse of Revelation 13 - verse 18 - demands careful exegesis. It can be noted
as both a literal fact, and it can convey spiritual import. Use of this verse
has been made by Adventist evangelists by identifying the Pope with title -
VICARIVS FILI DEI - which in the Latin equals - 666. A publication recently
came to this desk which claimed that this title "has long been a forgery
of Adventist publishing and is thoroughly fraudulent." Documentation was
given for this charge from a work by Gilbert M. Valentine,
The Shaping of
Adventism, published by
A spiritual truth is also hidden in this number and "wisdom." The Greek text reads - "For a number of man, it is" - no article, and the word for man is anthropos. Six is one shy of seven, which is a Biblical perfect number, but it is a combination of three sixes, three being another perfect number. Thus the number 666 could be interpreted as perfected imperfection. This even carries overtones of "six days shalt thou labor and do all thy work." Man in the worship of the works of his hands - Cain worship - and self glorification, cannot "Fear God and give glory to Him ... and worship Him who made ..." providing for man, the seventh day of rest, which is the essence of the First Angel's Message. (14:6-7) The Third Angel's Message also addresses this issue. "If any man worship the beast," but the "beast" is man in the height of his imperfection and rebellion against God.
picture justifies Thayer's definition of "the Wicked" one, "the
man of sin," as "he in whom all iniquity has as it were fixed its
abode" (II Thess. 2:8.) (See Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New
Testament, p. 48, art.
This is the one which the "false prophet" leads those who dwell on
the earth to worship. (Italicized emphasis added.)
(Italicized emphasis added.)
From WWN7(95) - Exegesis of Revelation, Part 3, The 144,000 and the Three Angels, pp. 3-4:
The third angel joins the other two. However, in John's recording of this message, he places it in the present tense - "If any man is worshiping (proskunei) the beast and his image, and is receiving (lambanei) a mark ...." (14:9) This message, therefore, except in a warning of what will be, cannot be "present truth" until the "mark" is in place, and the proclamation to worship is made. It needs to be kept in mind that the cause to worship this beast is contingent on the fact that "the deadly wound was healed." (13:12)
When we consider the "wisdom" and "understanding" given to John in the previous chapter (13:18), we discover that the basic element in this warning is against the worship of man for the "beast" is a man! The third angel joins his voice in warning that the rejection of the everlasting gospel's imperatives - "Fear God, and give glory to Him ... and worship Him who made" - and in its place, worshiping man in whatever form that may take, brings "the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture." (14:10)
In the final
confrontation when all that dwell on the face of the earth bow in worship to
the beast that had a deadly wound and "was healed," there will be a
"remnant of Israel" who, as the Three Worthies before them, refuse to
bow to the image - they will keep the commandments of God, and the faith of
Jesus." (14:12) It will be a trying ordeal for it will reveal the
"endurance" (patience - KJV) of the saints. "But he that shall
endure unto the end, the same shall be saved." (Matt. 24:13)
(Bold emphasis added.)
(Bold emphasis added.)
From WWN1(87) - :
The first "beast" of Revelation 13 is likewise both political and ecclesiastical. It is given a "seat," "power," and "great authority" by the dragon - the Devil and Satan. (13:2; 12:9) The Devil boasted to Christ that the kingdoms (governments) of this world belonged to him, and "to whomsoever he would give them." (Luke 4:6) But this beast is also ecclesiastical - worship is involved. (13:4)
The second "beast" of Revelation 13 is likewise both political and ecclesiastical. It exercises all the power of the first beast whose power was derived from the dragon. (13:12, 2) It has ecclesiastical overtones - it "causeth the earth and them that dwell therein to worship the first beast., whose deadly wound was healed." (13:12) But its horns of power are separated - "two horns like a lamb." This power arising out of "the earth" rather than "the sea" has been accurately identified with the American nation. From the United States is to come the suggestion of the formation of the "image to the beast." (13:14)
In the formation of this image which will demand obeisance to the beast through a mark, name, or number is a vital principle interlocked with the Third Angel's Message. The message is - "If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark ..." (14:9) This is clearly defined by the "wisdom" of God. Those who accept God's wisdom have "understanding." The text says - "Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man." (13:18) The worship of the beast in principle is the worship of man. The image to the beast in principle is the setting up of an organization in which man appropriates to himself that which belongs to God alone, and causes the adherents to that organization to give their allegiance under threat of excommunication. (Bold emphasis added.)
A Look at Revelation
The book of Revelation naturally divides itself into two sections: Chapters 1-11 & 12-22. The final section contains two predominant symbols - two women and two cities - with the other symbols either as war with, or in alliance with these two women or cities.
As the final section of the prophecy opens, the power operating behind the symbols of the book of Daniel is revealed - the dragon, that old serpent, the devil or Satan. However, because of the victory of the Cross, he is pictured as defeated, and a time limit set upon his activities. He is "cast down" (12:10) and he knows he has "but a short time." (12:12)
Satan is also pictured as operating behind a facade. He gives "his power, and his seat, and great authority" to the beast, one of whose heads is "wounded to death." (13:2-3) He has his prophet, "a false Elijah," who though lamb-like speaks as a "dragon." (Comp. 13:14 with 19:20; note 13:11,13) It is this false prophet who suggests "to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had a wound by a sword and did live." (13:14)
God's response to all "of this behind-the scenes activity of Satan is a message of warning that if- anyone worships .the beast and his image shall suffer the wrath of God which is poured out in the Seven Last Plagues (14: 9-10, 15:1
During the portrayal of the Seven Last Plagues to John, he is shown the second woman - "the great whore that sitteth upon many waters." (17: 1) The woman, Babylon, (17:5,18) had been seen sitting on the River Euphrates which was dried up under the sixth plague (16:12) But when one of the angels of the plagues reveals in symbolic detail this whore, she is riding upon a scarlet colored beast. (17:3)
This beast is defined as one that "was, and is not, and yet is," and though being "the eighth" is "of the seven." (17:8,11) He is the source of the seven heads. In John's day, five had fallen - Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, and Greece. One was - Rome. Daniel noted it consistently as being in two phases - pagan and papal. One was yet to come - the 2nd beast of Rev. 13, or the false prophet. (See 17:10)
The beast of Rev. 17 carrying the whore is the "yet is" phase of Satan.
And it is in this connection that Revelation 17 touches Daniel 11:45.
From WWN5(87) - The Jewish Equation -- Part 2:
The Seven Last Plagues
There is a principle to the interpretation of the revelations given in the Seven Last Plagues chapter which is frequently overlooked. All the plagues, save one, constitutes God's response to what man has done in probationary time. (The one exception is the third plague which is a repeat of, "blood" due to the death decree against the"saints". See comment, Great Controversy, p. 628) This principle of understanding Revelation 16 is easily seen by noting the first plague. (16:2) The "grievous sore" falls on those who "had the mark of the beast, and upon them which worshipped his image." When was this mark received, and when was this worship begun? Before or after the close of probation? The answer is simple - prior to the close of probation. Using this same principle for the sixth plague, we find the plague itself falls "upon the great river Euphrates." (16:12) Its results carry over into the seventh plague "great Babylon comes into remembrance before God." (16:19) But what causes God to pour out this plague? The answer is that the triumvirate of evil - the dragon, beast (Rev. 13), and the false prophet (2nd beast of Rev.13) - gather the rulers of earth to Har-Magedon.
Lest there be a misunderstanding, let it be clearly understood that all the Seven Last Plagues come after the close of human probation. However, the explanation as to why the plague is poured out is distinctly separate from the plague itself. This needs to be understood and distinguished in the study of Revelation 16. Thus Revelation 16:13-16 will be fulfilled prior to the close of probation. (See use made of Rev. 16:13-14 in Great Controversy, pp. 561-562)
While the sixth plague is poured out on what is termed "the great river
Euphrates," the "spirits of devils" had gathered the leadership of earth
with their forces to a place with a Hebrew designation. Herein is a
factor of the Jewish equation. God's wrath reveals how He views this
development. To Him it is what He has always revealed it to be -
Babylon, the epitome of rebellion. Thus the symbolism of "the great
river Euphrates," and the fact that the "whore" is carried by the beast
that "was, and is not, and yet is" who makes war with the Lamb.
(Rev.17:14) But the spirits of devils do not gather their devotees to
the river Euphrates, but rather to a place called in the Hebrew,
Har-Magedon. . . .
. . .
In the Hebrew language - har - means, mountain. This rules out
"Megiddo" for it is a valley. (Zech. 12:11) However, there is a mountain
named in the Old Testament which meets linguistic requirements. It is
called, har-mo'ed - Mount of the Congregation. It is described as
being "in the sides of the north" or Mt. Zion "the city of the great
King." (See Isa. 14:13; Ps. 48:2) By noting the objectives of Lucifer in
Isaiah 14:12-14, it is he who plans to "sit upon the mount of the
congregation" - har-mo'ed. To this end, the spirits of devils
gather the nations of the earth. Daniel simply states - "He
shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the
glorious holy mountain." (11:45) To John it revealed that "the spirits
of devils" coming from the dragon, beast and false prophet
gather the nations to the mount of the congregation. But the prophetic
message behind this symbolism is that literal Jerusalem is to be made
"an holy city" from man's view-point, while God's view-point the
deception is in reality, Babylon the Great. The significance to us is
that when this occurs, the prophecy states - "And at that time shall
Michael stand up." (Dan. 12:1) "But the true leader of all of this
rebellion is Satan clothed as an angel of light. Men will be deceived
and will exalt him to the place of God, and deify him. But Omnipotence
will interpose, and to the apostate churches that unite in
exaltation of Satan, the sentence will go forth, 'Therefore shall her
plagues come in one day...'" (TM,
p. 62) How near are we to the fulfillment of this Divine edict? (Bold
and italicized emphasis added.)
(Bold and italicized emphasis added.)