Copyright 1994 - 2023 Bill's Bible Basics
Authored By :
Published On :
June 29, 2001
Last Updated :
July 19, 2012
NOTE: This article or series has not been updated recently. As such, it may possibly contain some outdated information, and/or ideas and beliefs which I no longer embrace, or which have changed to some degree.
Prince Of The Covenant Can't Equate To Jewish False Messiah, Prince Of The Covenant Is An Architect Of The Holy Covenant And May Be Jewish By Birth, King Of The North May Equate To Beast Rising From Sea, Waters Represent People And Nations, God Uses Beasts Horns And Toes To Signify Empires, Nations, And Leaders, Ten Toes, Ten Horns, Wind Symbolizes Spiritual Forces, God Alone Raises Up And Puts Down Political Leaders, Comparison Between Revelation 13's Beast And The King Of The North, Prophecies Concerning The Destruction Of Jerusalem And The Temple, Beast And King Of The North Blaspheme Against God, Beast And King Of The North Persecute Jews For Three And A Half Jewish Years, First Jewish-Roman War, Temple Destroyed In The Midst Of The Week, Daniel And John Seem To Write About Same Individual, "Beast" And "Antichrist" Are Not Synonymous, Jewish False Messiah, Moshiach ben David Is Real Antichrist, Jews Would Never Accept A Gentile As Messiah, Beast False Prophet And Ten Horns May Be Muslim, Challenges Of Properly Interpreting Bible Prophecy, I Am Really Clueless Regarding The Identities Of Prophetic Characters, My Endeavors To Link Prophecy To Real-World Events, Political Leaders Now And Then
Having now briefly discussed the history of the previous two -- or three -- Temples, depending on your personal point of view, let us return to our original discussion regarding the Jewish false messiah -- that is, Moshiach ben David -- the "prince of the covenant" and the "king of the north" -- that is, the Beast -- who are mentioned to varying degrees by the Prophet Daniel, by Jesus, by John the Apostle, and by the Apostle Paul.
Obviously, if according to the Apostle Paul, this "Wicked" who sits in the temple claiming to be "God" is Moshiach ben David -- the Jewish false messiah -- and if he is destroyed at the Lord's Coming as Paul informs us, then it is rather difficult to equate him with the "prince of the covenant" who is broken by the "king of the north" in the Book of Daniel. If Moshiach ben David is not the "prince of the covenant", as now appears to be the case, in my view, then I suspect that Daniel's "prince" may be another architect who is behind the creation of -- and possibly even the signing of -- the "holy covenant". Regardless of who he is, it seems to me that just the fact that the "holy covenant" involves the Jewish Temple, strongly suggests that the "prince of the covenant" may be Jewish by birth. Of course, this is not written in stone.
In "The Kings of the North and the South", I also offer the possibility that the "king of the north" may be synonymous with the first Beast who is described by the Apostle John in the thirteenth chapter of the Book of Revelation as rising "up out of the sea". In the seventeenth chapter of the same book, we are informed that seas and waters represent peoples and nations. Consider the following verses:
"And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy."
Revelation 13:1, KJV
"And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues."
Revelation 17:15, KJV
As I also explain in "The Kings of the North and the South", and in other articles which delve into prophetic events, in the Scriptures, God employs different kinds of beasts, horns and toes to represent empires, nations, and the leaders and governments of the nations. For example, we find the Ten Toes in the prophecies of Daniel, which may be synonymous with the Ten Horns which are described by John in the Book of Revelation. Consider the following example verses:
"Thou, O king, sawest, and behold a great image. This great image, whose brightness was excellent, stood before thee; and the form thereof was terrible. This image's head was of fine gold, his breast and his arms of silver, his belly and his thighs of brass, His legs of iron, his feet part of iron and part of clay. Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth. This is the dream; and we will tell the interpretation thereof before the king . . . And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters' clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay. And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay. And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever."
Daniel 2:31-36, 41-44, KJV
"After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns . . . And of the ten horns that were in his head, and of the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even of that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look was more stout than his fellows . . . And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings."
Daniel 7:7, 20, 24, KJV
"And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads."
Revelation 12:3, KJV
"And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy."
Revelation 13:1, KJV
"So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns . . . And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns . . . And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast . . . And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire."
Revelation 17:3, 7, 12, 16, KJV
"I said unto the fools, Deal not foolishly: and to the wicked, Lift not up the horn: Lift not up your horn on high: speak not with a stiff neck. For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another."
Psalm 75:4-7, KJV
In addition to using beasts -- or animals -- toes and other body parts, and horns to represent different empires, nations, governments and their leaders in the Bible, God also uses the wind to symbolize spiritual forces -- both good and evil -- which affect the peoples and nations of the world. Consider the following verses. Notice in particular that just as God's Spirit "moved upon the face of the waters" like a wind, so too, in the Book of Daniel, we are told that "the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea:
"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters."
Genesis 1:1-2, KJV
"Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea. And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another."
Daniel 7:2-3, KJV
"Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit."
John 3:5-8, KJV
"And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."
Acts 2:1-4, KJV
"Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:"
Ephesians 2:2, KJV
There should be no doubt that beasts often symbolize empires, nations, governments and their leaders in the Scriptures. As further proof of this point, consider the fact that after describing the "four great beasts" which "came up from the sea", the Angelic Messenger very specifically informs the Prophet Daniel that they represent "four kings which shall arise out of the earth", as we see by these verses:
"Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea. And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another . . . I came near unto one of them that stood by, and asked him the truth of all this. So he told me, and made me know the interpretation of the things. These great beasts, which are four, are four kings, which shall arise out of the earth."
Daniel 7:2-3, 16-17, KJV
Thus we see that both the Prophet Daniel and the Apostle John are actually witnessing the spiritual forces which influence the peoples and nations of the world, in order to give rise to the particular rulers and their dominions -- whether an empire or a nation -- as ordained by God. As we learned earlier with the verses from Psalm 75, it is the Omnipotent God alone who "putteth down one, and setteth up another". Following are some additional verses which verify this point:
"Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding:"
Daniel 2:20-21, KJV
"This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will, and setteth up over it the basest of men."
Daniel 4:17, KJV
"The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will."
Proverbs 21:1, KJV
"For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king. And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice. Now therefore, I pray thee, pardon my sin, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD. And Samuel said unto Saul, I will not return with thee: for thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, and the LORD hath rejected thee from being king over Israel."
1 Samuel 15:23-26, KJV
As I mentioned a moment ago, there is a possibility that the Beast which rises "up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns" in Revelation chapter thirteen, may be synonymous with the "king of the north" who is mentioned by Daniel, and who breaks the "prince of the covenant". Not only that, but he may also be the same figure as the stout horn which rises after the Ten Horns, subdues three of the horns, and speaks great things in Daniel chapter seven. Consider the facts:
1. The Beast of Revelation 13 rises up out of the sea; that is, from the people. The "king of the north" becomes "strong with a small people" by sharing the spoils of war with them.
2. Both the "king of the north" and the Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen appear to hold political office.
3. Both the "king of the north" and the Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen are military leaders as well.
4. Both the "king of the north" and the Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen invade Israel, which results in the Temple compound being defiled. Regarding this fourth point, compare the following verses which are found in the prophecies of Daniel, the Synoptic Gospels, and the Book of Revelation:
". . . and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate."
Daniel 9:26b-27, KJV
"And arms shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the sanctuary of strength, and shall take away the daily sacrifice, and they shall place the abomination that maketh desolate."
Daniel 11:31, KJV
"When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)"
Matthew 24:15, KJV
"But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that readeth understand,) then let them that be in Judaea flee to the mountains:"
Mark 13:14, KJV
"And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh . . . and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled."
Luke 21:20, 24b, KJV
"And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein. But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months. And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth."
Revelation 11:1-3, KJV
5. Both the "king of the north" and the Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen will blaspheme God, and magnify themselves above all. Consider the following verses which verify this point. I have added some words in brackets for the sake of clarification:
"And he [the eleventh horn who rises from the fourth beast] shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time."
Daniel 7:25, KJV
"And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak marvellous things against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the indignation be accomplished: for that that is determined shall be done."
Daniel 11:36, KJV
"And there was given unto him [the Beast] a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven. And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations."
Revelation 13:5-7, KJV
6. As some of the previous verses clearly demonstrate, both the "king of the north" and the Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen persecute the Jews, and pollute the Temple for a period of three and a half Jewish years. A Jewish year is three hundred and sixty days. This specific time period is represented in the Books of Daniel and Revelation in the following manner:
1. "forty-two months"
2. "1,260 days"
3. "time and times and the dividing of time" (3 1/2)
4. "time, times, and an half" (3 1/2)
The Prophet Daniel also mentions a 1,290 day period, as well as a 1,335 day period. This latter time span is the same as 44.4 Jewish months at thirty days each, while the 1,290 days equals exactly forty-three Jewish months. Following are some additional verses which prove this point:
"And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he [the king of the north] shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished."
Daniel 12:7, KJV
"And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days."
Daniel 12:11-12, KJV
"And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days."
Revelation 12:6, KJV
Please note that as we already discussed in part one, all of the previous verses appear to be describing Rome's invasion of Jerusalem during the seven-year First Jewish-Roman War, which occurred from 66 AD to 73 AD. As we have seen, this war ultimately resulted in Herod's Temple being defiled, and the entire Temple compound finally being destroyed in 70 AD. According to what I have read, the Romans continued "mop up" operations for another three and a half years following the destruction of the Temple compound. In short, God's Word was fulfilled to the letter. The date 70 AD places these events right in the middle of the seven-year period; that is, "in the midst of the week" according to the Prophet Daniel. As I explain in other articles, this period of seven years equals a week -- or "shabua" in Hebrew -- in Biblical symbology.
Considering all of these similarities between the "king of the north" who deals treacherously with the "prince of the covenant", and the first Beast of Revelation 13, in my view, it is difficult to not conclude that Daniel and John are writing about the very same nasty individual.
What perplexes me personally, is the fact that today there are quite a number of theologians, Bible teachers, online preachers, writers and regular Christians, who have become doctrinally confused, in my view. As a result, such people erroneously equate the first Beast of the Book of Revelation with the figure who is widely referred to as the Antichrist. In other words, they have convinced themselves -- with the help of a number of famous book authors and preachers who embrace a futurist point of view -- that the first Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen and the Antichrist are one and the same person.
As a matter of clarification, let me mention here that as I point out in the article "Who Is Who?: Defining Important Prophecy Terms", for quite a few years now, I have considered it a misnomer to refer to the Beast of Revelation 13 as the Antichrist. While the Beast of Revelation may be antichrist in nature -- because like so many other people in the world today he denies the divinity of Jesus Christ -- in the truest sense of the word, I believe that the phrase "the Antichrist" should rightly be applied to the Jewish false messiah; that is, Moshiach ben David. My reasons for adopting this position are quite simple. Not only will Moshiach ben David deny the real Jesus Christ, he will in fact convince the deceived Jews that he is their real messiah. He will attempt to take the place of Jesus Christ. Thus, he will be "the Antichrist".
If you have been reading carefully, you will notice that each time that I have mentioned the false messiah, I have referred to him specifically as the Jewish false messiah. It is because I am convinced that he will be of Jewish lineage, that I also believe the deceived Jews will allow him to sit in the Temple -- assuming that it will eventually be built -- where he will perform amazing signs and lying wonders in order to convince the Jews that he is their messiah.
Having now explained who I believe the real Antichrist is, perhaps you can understand why I believe that it does not make sense to claim that the Antichrist and the first Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen are the same person. If you still don't quite understand, it is simply this: To believe that the Beast and the Antichrist are the same person is to basically say that he is a Gentile. The Orthodox Jews would never allow a non-Jew -- or Gentile -- to sit in the Temple and pose as their long-awaited messiah. If you understand the mentality that governs Orthodox Judaism, then you know that this simply will not happen. Moshiach ben David must meet certain very rigid requirements in order to be heralded as the Jewish messiah; and being a Gentile is certainly not one of them. He must be a direct descendant of King David.
If you have read my series "The Seven Heads" then you will know that for quite a number of years now, I have theorized that the Beast, the False Prophet and the Ten Horns may be Muslims. If this theory is correct, then it makes it even less likely that the Beast of Revelation chapter thirteen and the Antichrist -- or Jewish false messiah -- can be the same person. Does anyone honestly believe that the Jews will accept a Muslim as their messiah? To clarify this issue in your minds, while some Christians believe that "Beast" and "Antichrist" are interchangeable terms, I do not accept this as being accurate. I am convinced that the Beast represents a Gentile military leader who invades Israel -- as per the writings of the Prophet Daniel and the Apostle John -- while the real Antichrist is the Jewish false messiah -- Moshiach ben David -- as indicated in Paul's second Epistle to the Thessalonians.
Please think this through for a moment. If the Beast and the Antichrist are the same individual as certain Christians seem to believe, then from my perspective of the Antichrist being the Jewish false messiah, they are saying that a Jew invades his own country, blasphemes God, and persecutes his own people. It just does not make any sense whatsoever.
As I explain in "The Kings of the North and the South", one of the challenges we face when delving into eschatology -- that is, the study of Endtime events, the ultimate destiny of humanity and related topics -- is to try to separate what has already happened from those prophecies which are yet to be fulfilled. Without a thorough knowledge of history, or at least a good source of historical resources, this can be a very difficult task. As I mentioned at the beginning of this series, it is certainly something which I personally have not yet mastered, and doubt that I ever will. Add to this the complexities of the Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic languages, and the challenge we face to properly understand God's Word -- particularly the prophecies -- becomes even greater.
What makes Biblical exegesis -- that is, interpretation -- even more difficult is the fact that some theologians and Bible teachers believe that there are some prophecies which may have intermediate or partial fulfillments, as well as ultimate fulfillments at some later point in history. I have considered this possibility for many years now. Add to this the fact that there also exist preterists, historicists and futurists, and properly understanding Biblical prophecy can become even more of a daunting task. Everyone has their own opinion, and there are as many different interpretations as there are theologians, pastors, preachers and Bible teachers.
Having stated the above, let me mention that insofar as the actual identities of these different prophetic characters are concerned -- that is, the Beast, the False Prophet, the Ten Horns, the Jewish false messiah -- or Antichrist -- the kings of the north and the south and the prince of the covenant -- currently, I can honestly say that I really don't have a clue who they are -- or were -- depending on your particular point of view as a preterist or a futurist.
For four decades now, I have watched certain Middle Eastern leaders -- such as Hafez al-Assad, Saddam Hussein, Yasser Arafat, Hosni Mubarak, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, Muammar Gaddafi, Bashar al-Assad, Mohammad Khatami, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Mahmoud Abbas, etc. -- and wondered if any of them may possibly play a significant role in the Endtime scenario. One by one I have watched them die, or else fall from power. Of course, I have also kept my eyes on some European leaders, Israeli leaders, Russian leaders, the Pope, and a few American political leaders as well, in the hope of discerning exactly where we stand in the Endtime scenario. As I said, I am about as clueless now as I was forty years ago.
Please go to part three for the continuation of this series.
⇒ Go To The Next Part . . .