Revelation 13:6–8 (NKJV)
6 Then he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme His name, His tabernacle, and those who dwell in heaven. 7 It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. 8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
Revelation 13: 1-10: A seven-headed, ten horned beast with names written on each head blaspheming God rises out of the ocean. It looks like a leopard, has the feet of a bear, and the mouth of a lion. The dragon gives it power. One head causes the world to worship the beast when it is wounded and healed. The result is that the people of the world ask, “Who is greater than the beast and able to fight him?” The beast is allowed to wage war against God for 42 months and he is given authority over all people and the people worship him. During this time, God’s people are persecuted. 11-17: A second beast with two lamb’s horns rises with the voice of a dragon who, through miraculous feats, causes the world to make a statue to the first beast and worship him. The statue is brought to life and anyone not worshiping it must die. He also causes everyone to be given a mark on their head or their right hand. No one is able to buy or sell without the mark. This mark is said to be the number of man: 666.
The description of this beast sounds so familiar to what we are seeing on the news each night. Great blasphemies are being spouted and the beast makes war on the saints of God. There is one key phrase in v 7: It was granted him to make war on the saints and to overcome them. I don’t like the fact that the beast will overcome the saints, but I do like the fact that God is still in control. Any loss the people of God suffer is temporary, reversible, and glorifies God.
This principle applies not just to the end times (or whatever time you peg for this book); it is for today. There may be times when the enemy makes war on us and seems to be winning, but all of this still falls under the control of God and, ultimately, our enemy will lose!
Help me to remember this today, Lord, when I go through trouble.