The Seven Heads of the Beast
The seven heads of the beast are images of the nations that actively promote the goal of the dragon by bitterly attacking the House of Israel. According to the Bible, there were six such attacks during the course of its writing. Two more were prophesied. The last one has been predicted to be a reincarnation of one of the previous seven. This is why we do not see in scripture images of eight heads, even though there will be. Many scholars see in Rome all six heads and have tried to list them starting with Julius Ceasar and ending with Nero. There is a strong relationship between actions centered in Rome and the dragon, but the vision of John in the Book of Revelation is a world view. It represents an entire world fighting against the House of Israel, not simply one nation. The number seven, of course, means totality or fulfillment. It is the number of completion.
1. PHARAOH OF EGYPT
The first pagan nation to attack Israel was Egypt. The captivity of Pharaoh, the first head of the beast, was so binding that it could only be overcome by the direct power of God -- the display of which when it came was of such awesome proportions that it split the Red Sea in half. Egypt was the reason for Moses and the Exodus. This nation created the allegory for the 'ingathering' and defined the structure upon which mankind's redemption and atonement would be based.
2. TIGLATH-PILESER III OF ASSYRIA
The second of these seven nations was Assyria, a country situated in what is today the northeastern part of Iraq. It's capitol, Nineveh, was about a hundred miles north of the modern city of Baghdad. The Assyrians were responsible for the lost ten tribes of Israel. Invading the land of Palestine, the army of Nineveh swept ten of the twelve tribes of Israel out of the pages of history, plunging them into a captivity so deep that only the power of Jesus could rescue them from permanent anonymity. In this mass eviction and enslavement, over 80% of Jacob's entire descendancy disappeared -- submerged by the Assyrians into the greater human race through the genetic camouflage of intermarriage with the pagan people which surrounded them. The Assyrians were also responsible for bringing the foreign Samaritans in to occupy the land made vacant by the deportation of the Hebrew Ephraimites. The Assyrian offensive against the northern tribes was of preeminent significance, because it created the vast invisible pool out of which the 'hidden remnant' of Israel which Jeremiah said would be called back by the Messiah to take the ruling scepter away from the Jews and rebuild Jerusalem in the integrity of the Son of David, would later flow. As we have seen before, these 'lost tribes', because they were so extensive, have created, through intermarriage and time, an enormous hidden reservoir of Israelites able to claim in Christ a legitimate tribal legacy reaching right back to Abraham himself. And no one can dispute their claim because God has made their heritage physically invisible. In the 3000 years that have gone by since this massive deportation first occured, virtually every person living on earth today has the potential for having been 'touched' at some point in their genetic past by this ever-expanding, but imperceptible, Hebrew legacy. This lineage was promised to Abraham by God in the Bible: "I will make your descendants as many as the stars of heaven and the grains of sand on the seashore... All the nations of the world shall bless themselves by your descendants, as a reward for your obedience." (Gen.22:17-18).
3. NEBUCHADNEZZAR OF BABYLON
The third major nation to attack the House of Israel was Babylon. One hundred years after the northern tribes fell to the Assyrians, Nebuchadnezzar led the forces of Babylon into Jerusalem and carried away the last two tribes (Judah and Benjamine), transporting them to the banks of the Euphrates where they were held in bondage for seventy years. This event created the base on which the the Bible has brought to a focus every attack ever made against the House of Israel. Babylon's very name has become the scriptural cryptogram for all empires opposing God's people. As a result, most of us now see Babylon and the work of Satan in synonymous terms. The destruction of Babylon by Persia, (announced the night before it happened by Daniel) presages the ultimate destruction of this sinful world by eastern forces in the last days; and the Persian decree which set the Jews free from Babylon, anticipates a future declaration that will end Babylon's reign over Israel forever.
4. HAMAN OF PERSIA
The fourth assault against the House of Israel came from Persia. This attack, documented in the Bible's Book of Esther, came in the form of a Persian proclamation sentencing all Jews to death -- a sentence typifying Satan's own decree. In the pages of the Book of Esther we are shown vivid symbols of the hierarchy of God's kingdom and it's principle figures. In this story the king alludes to Jesus; the first wife (Vashti) to the old creation; the new bride (Esther) to the new creation; her guardian (Mordecai) to Michael the Archangel; and the wicked prince trying to exterminate the Jewish race (Haman) to Satan and his Beast. The book unfolds its analogy in an allegorical format; and it culminates in the ultimate salvation of the people of God from a death sentence initiated by Haman -- a high official in the Persian court -- a man who is ultimately put to death on the very gallows he built to destroy the Hebrew race. These circumstances not only duplicate the biblical image of the House of Israel under siege by Satan (the 'Accuser' who has condemned us before God and petitioned for our deaths) they bring into focus the actions of the Rebel to come who will duplicate all these things one final time at the end of the world. At that time, the whole tenant of the Bible's story of Esther will be repeated once again in a fatal decree which will be issued by the Rebel when he overthrows the church in Rome, taking back his throne; and then gathers his armies around Jerusalem in an attempt to make his dictum final. The fact that Haman (a non-Persian who had risen to the highest ranks of the Persian court) tried to use his office to exterminate the Jews as a race brings him into direct correlation with the northern prince at the end of time who will similarly vow to bring the House of Israel to the gallows of Jerusalem -- using troops from the very same nation.
5. ANTIOCHUS IV EPIPHANES OF SYRIAN GREECE
The fifth attack on the surviving tribes of the House of Israel came from Greece -- actually from the Syrian part of Alexander's Grecian empire. This assault was led by Antiochus IV Epiphanes and elements of it have been recounted throughout this book. That is because it was Antiochus who ordered the original abomination in the Jewish temple be erected, defiling the Hebrew sacrifice. In this action, Antiochus initiated the allegory which now defines the ultimate separation of the human race from its one and only shield against the Apocalypse -- the sacrificial peace treaty of Jesus Christ that holds back the terrible wrath of the last days. When the beast of the last days places iniquity on Christ's sacrifice, the entire allegory of Antiochus will be replicated, and there will be no clemency possible from the events which follow.
6. NERO OF ROME
Rome is the one head of the beast that is universally agreed on by modern scholars. John prophesied pointedly to Rome as the sixth head, especially in relationship to Nero, the madman who put to death most of the leading Christian citizens of Rome including Peter and Paul. This is the nation which put Jesus on the cross and then later repented of its actions by ratifying the treaty of the cross. Within this treaty was structured the exodus of the millenium. Because of this, Rome brings us full circle. In the actions of Constantine we see a duplication of the edict of the Egyptian Pharoah who allowed the Israelites to leave Egypt in peace as they followed the road God created for them in Moses, leading to the Promised Land. With the Edict of Milan, the Roman emperor Constantine allowed the Christians to live in peace in his empire and to preach the Gospel of Christ without hindrance from the government. This allowance enabled those who chose to live and work in Christ, full opportunity to carry on their worship, creating the spiritual exodus the Bible was written to expedite. At the end of the Exodus, however, Pharaoh had a sudden change of heart and sent his troops to attack the rearguard of the departing Israelites. This attack brings us to the seventh emperor -- to the head which had not yet come when John wrote down his words. And then to the eighth. These last are the two heads of the final days. They will duplicate Pharaoh's attack, focusing their hostility on the rear column of God's departing people.
7. HITLER OF GERMANY
Very little is known about the seventh head -- the wicked emperor destined to appear between Nero and the Rebel. All that is said in scripture about him is John's cryptic remark that his reign will be short. (Rv.17:10). In its portrait of the beast's heads, the Book of Revelation appears to be pointing to the appearance of godless and warmongering leaders whose avowed purpose revolves around the destruction of the people of God and the return of the world to Antichrist government -- i.e, in the case of the seventh (and eighth) heads, rulers committed to healing the 'mortal wound' inflicted on the world by the sword of Christ (the Gospel). In this respect, the seventh head had to have been Adolph Hitler. He not only commanded the first truly pagan empire to control Rome since the days of the Caesar's, his reign matched the only prophecy that exists concerning the beast's seventh head -- it was quite short. Hitler's hatred for the House of Israel, demonstrated by his obsessive desire to murder the entire Jewish race makes him stand out starkly from all other secular leaders during the Christian Era. It also aligns him perfectly with the previous six heads of the beast. In fact his single-mindedness and terrifying resolve with respect to Jewish extermination far outstripped all of his predecessors put together. Everything about Hitler seemed to personify wickedness. No person who has ever lived on this earth was a better parrot of the actions of the 'angel of the Abyss' -- the title bestowed upon the armed Destroyer whose appearance on earth is heralded by events surrounding the sounding of the 'fifth trumpet' in the Book of Revelation. (Rv.9:11).
8. TBA -- THE EIGHTH HEAD OF THE BEAST
The eighth head of the beast has not yet risen. Ezekiel prophesies that he will come from a new country formed among the Ten Nation Confederacy of the East and North in the last days. The Country he forms will be called (in symbolism) 'Magog', obviously in honor of himself ('Gog'). According to Ezekiell, three of the ten-nations associated with the eastern confederacy will be pulled out to accomodate Magog. The three pulled out, Ezekiel calls (again in symbolism) Rosh, Meschach and Tubal. The names are associated with countries surrounding the Black Sea, two of which (on the surface) seem to be illiterations of Russia and Turkey. The eighth head, of course, after vicious warfare and Christian persecution, will burn the earth to the ground and gather what is left of the armies to a place called 'Armageddon', where heaven will put his malevolent actions to an end and initiate the Last Judgment of mankind.
'The Last Days of Babylon, Chapter 16, 'The Seven Hills of Rome'
'The Last Days of Babylon, Chapter 17 'The Beast of Berlin'
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