As the entire world breathlessly awaits the outcome of the upcoming U.S. election, the question I wish to propose isn't, "Who will win, Trump or Biden?" But rather, does America itself have a place in end-time biblical prophecy?
In spite of America's massive problems, political divisions and rising social unrest, what happens in Washington D.C. affects the globe. Even in the midst of this coronavirus pandemic, the United States of America yet remains as the world's sole superpower. But is the most powerful nation on earth mentioned in the Bible at all?
Many prophecy teachers state emphatically, "The U.S. isn't there." They may pinpoint Russia, China, Israel, Iraq or Iran as major end-time players, but not the United States. After 40 years of studying eschatology, I want to suggest the possibility that America is the exact power specified in this mysterious verse in Revelation 13:11:
"Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon."
First, it is helpful to identify that the term "beast" translates to a "great nation." The proof is in the book of Daniel, chapter 7, which clearly parallels Revelation 13. Both Daniel 7 and Revelation 13 refer to beasts, ten horns, a boastful mouth speaking great things and battles against God's saints. Daniel 7 describes four great beasts: a lion, a bear, a leopard and a dragon-like creature. An angelic interpreter confirmed:
"The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom on earth" (Daniel 7:23).
So we can nail this down: According to Daniel 7:23, a "beast" in Bible prophecy isn't a computer or super-evil bad guy, but a mighty kingdom or nation. That's what the angel said. Historically, 98% of reputable Christian Bible commentaries have interpreted Daniel 7's four beasts to represent the ancient nations of Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome. But let's go back to Revelation 13:11:
"I saw another beast coming out of the earth."
John is describing a great nation rising into power. From where? "Out of the earth." In Daniel 7, all four beasts "came up from the sea" (Dan. 7:3). What does "water" represent? Again, prophecy provides a clear answer. In a parallel prophecy, another angel confirmed: "The waters which you saw, where the harlot sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations and tongues" (Rev. 17:15).
True to the facts of history, ancient Babylon, Persia, Greece and Rome all arose from the midst of a sea of peoples in Europe and the Middle East. Not so with the beast in Revelation 13:11.
It comes "out of the earth."
The underlying Greek words for "out of the earth" also imply gradual growth like a plant. Next, John wrote that this new nation would have "two horns," indicating a division of power. Significantly, those two horns have no crowns upon them like a previous beast referred to in Revelation 13:1, which has "ten horns," and "on his horns ten crowns."
"Crowns" signify kingly power. Thus, in Revelation 13:11 we see a new nation, springing up gradually like a plant in a wilderness territory, which develops a government not ruled by kings. It would be democratic—"of the people, by the people, and for the people."
Its "two horns" would be "like a lamb." Each word here is significant. The true Lamb of God is Jesus Christ. "Like a lamb," indicates that this nation would have Christian features. A lamb is a young animal, a baby sheep. So, this nation would at one time be youthful and new. The two horns themselves are considered to be lamblike.
When Jesus was challenged by tricky Pharisees whether it was lawful for Jews to pay taxes or not, He insightfully responded: "Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's" (Matt. 22:21).
"Caesar" represents government, while "the things that are God's" represent the things of religion and the church. In this teaching, Jesus Christ, the Lamb, clearly showed a proper separation between the two. Amazingly, this exact principle—which is historically rooted in the teaching of Jesus—has become the cornerstone of the first amendment of the U.S. Bill of Rights, which says:
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."
Let's put all the pieces together:
1. Revelation 13:11 pinpoints the rising of a great beast.
2. In prophecy, a beast represents a great nation.
3. This nation comes out of the earth, or wilderness area.
4. This nation starts out young, like a baby lamb.
5. This nation has a division of power within its government.
6. Its horns have no crowns. It has no kings.
7. This nation is lamblike, with distinct Christian characteristics.
Be honest: How many nations on planet earth fit all seven of these heaven-inspired details?
The United States of America.
Yet Revelation 13:11 plainly predicts that major changes will envelope our beloved county. Sadly, the prediction is that this mighty nation which has stood tall for representative government, democracy and freedom, will finally sacrifice its mild, lamblike, Christian principles, and eventually "speak as a dragon."
Consider candidly what has happened during the coronavirus pandemic. Based on "emergency" advice from health experts, orders have been given from state governors to close private businesses, even churches. Yet look again at the First Amendment. It denies the right of government leaders to "prohibit the free exercise" of religion, and the right of the people "peaceably to assemble."
Is the dragon starting to speak?
Steve Wohlberg is the director of White Horse Media. He is the author of 40-plus books, including, The United States in Bible Prophecy, and his newest, Approaching Armageddon: Discover Hope Beyond Earth's Final Battle. His website is whitehorsemedia.com.
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