The False Prophet is only mentioned in a short passage from the thirteenth chapter of The Revelation. (verses 11-18) But what we learn here is that it is actually the False Prophet who succeeds in getting the world to worship the Beast and his "image".

 

The False Prophet is described as looking "like a lamb", but speaking "as a dragon". (Revelation 13:11) He has all the power that the Beast himself has, but his primary role is to teach the world to worship the Beast.

 

Remember Max Weber's research into religion? (p. 75) Weber discovered that the primary function of all religions has been to teach the masses that society is God. Rather than teach people to worship and serve the Creator, institutional religion has always taught people to worship and serve the System… or the Beast.

 

This has been happening throughout history. Because of that, the message of The Revelation has always been relevant.

 

However, in this final age, there appears to be a fulfillment of what Weber observed, which is going to be far more devastating for the spiritual future of the human race. There have been many antichrists, and there have been many false prophets. But there is going to be one supremely evil Antichrist, and one supremely evil False Prophet during the last three and a half years of history as we now know it.

 

The Bible specifically warns us that the False Prophet will be able to control the masses through his ability to perform what appear to be miracles. (Revelation 13:13-14)

 

In a prophecy relating to the end of the world, the Apostle Paul talks about the "Man of Sin" and the "Wicked One" coming before Christ returns. He says, in particular, that the Wicked One will come "after the working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish, because they received not the love of the truth that they might be saved." (II Thessalonians 2:2-12) In other words, this Wicked One is going to have the ability to perform what appear to be miracles, but they will actually be "lying" wonders.

 

Church historians are pretty much in agreement when they say that the biggest thing that has happened in the church world in the Twentieth Century has been the Pentecostal movement, with its emphasis on miraculous "gifts". However, the movement has been characterised by widespread deception and dishonesty. From the mail fraud of Jimmy Bakker to tricks with chicken livers by Jim Jones, the movement has spawned some of the worst abuses of congregational trust that religion has ever experienced.

 

There is hardly a Pentecostal minister anywhere in the world today who doesn't at least consent to the teaching that people should "claim" miracles have happened even when all the available evidence indicates otherwise. The argument in defence of this practice is that "claiming" a miracle, when there is none, shows great faith. However, the result has been that faith healers receive endorsements without having to produce the goods. They usually move on to their next crusade, while leaving the disillusioned to sort out for themselves how they are going to live with the fact that they told a lie about a miracle that never happened.

 

They told the lie in the first place ("God has healed me! Thank you, Jesus!") in the hope of pressuring God into giving them what they "claimed" had already occurred. That's how the teaching works. When it does not eventuate, most people are too embarrassed to admit the falseness of the whole process. They assume that they are the only ones who didn't get what they had hoped for; and they fear that others will think that their faith was defective if they were not healed; so they say nothing, and the lie grows.

 

In this tragic illustration of the social phenomenom that Hans Christian Andersen was describing in his story about The Emperor's New Clothes, the entire Pentecostal movement has become one big lie, with each person secretly trying to imitate what they hear others saying.

 

The church world has largely refused to deal decisively with the lie. And it appears to be the same lie that the False Prophet will use to lead the "faithful" to worship the Antichrist.

 

We are told that the False Prophet will have two horns "like a lamb", but he will have the voice of a dragon. If the horns represent authority, then we can expect he will claim to have the authority of Christ (the Lamb), at the same time that what he says will really reflect the lies of the Devil.

 

You will not find one church leader in a hundred today who believes in and preaches obedience to the teachings of Jesus. What they teach instead, are cleverly worded doctrines which justify disobedience to the teachings of Jesus.

 

Such men of faith as Gandhi and Tolstoy were appalled to find that the official position of the bulk of "Christianity" is that God neither expects nor even wants us to try to be good (in the sense of obeying Christ). The churches do teach rules about church attendance, saying little prayers, performing rituals, and "obeying the laws of the land". But the vast majority of Protestants believe that strict discipline in matters such as Christ taught is an attempt to "work your way to heaven". Trying to work your way to heaven (i.e. trying to be good in an attempt to please God) is seen as the most fundamental of all sins.

 

It matters not that these teachings totally contradict what Christ said about the need for obedience if one wishes to be counted as one of his followers. In other words, those who claim to be speaking on behalf of Christ (i.e. wearing the horns of the Lamb) are actually spouting anti-Christ teachings of the Devil (or the Dragon).

 

Christ taught that miracles prove nothing about real faith. He said an "evil and adulterous generation" seeks miracles. (Matthew 16:4) Such is the generation that we now live in. Teachings about morality and discipline have been discarded in favour of teachings about how to get health and wealth.

 

Ironically, the Bible says the False Prophet, working with the Antichrist, will be able to call fire down from heaven (Revelation 13:13); and it says almost the same about the Two Witnesses! (Revelation 11:5) So we will have two teams of two, both calling fire down from heaven. Apparently they will both start out by saying they speak on behalf of Christ (the Lamb). Anyone hoping to tell the good guys from the bad guys on the basis of the miracles that they can perform, will almost certainly be conned into following the bad guys instead.

 

From experience we have found that true discernment is not based on superficial examination. It looks more deeply than just at whether or not one can do a miracle or talk piously. True discernment only comes from following and obeying the Lamb yourself. As you do this, you will learn personally what he requires of his followers. Based on the teachings of Jesus in the Bible, you will learn to recognise the difference between the Dragon's voice and the Lamb's voice.

 

The False Prophet "makes an image to the Beast", and "gives life to the image" so that it can speak. This part of the prophecy is a bit baffling if the False Prophet represents the institutional church.

 

There is another interpretation of the prophecy which says that the institutional church has lost relevance in today's world. It says that the "prophets" of the Twentieth Century are scientists. Science, through television (the image that can speak), now dictates the norms and values of today's society. There is some truth in this, and it is not completely inconsistent with the earlier theory. The mainline churches strongly support the government education system, and science as taught in government schools. The churches, as a whole, have taken the attitude that "if you can't beat them, you may as well join them." Science, with its quest for truth, and education with its free pass to well-paid employment have become the message of the church to today's youth. Never mind that science has made the totally unproven and irrational theory of evolution the centerpiece of its ideology, in an effort to minimise or totally rule out God's role in creation.

 

And so science, with ecclesiastical blessing, makes an image, according to Revelation 13:15, that keeps track of any who do not worship the Beast (i.e. who do not take or use the Mark). It sounds like a massive computer that keeps tabs on all the millions who show loyalty to the Beast by using his Mark to buy and sell. Those who do not, will be killed... by starvation if by nothing else.

 

The Revelation's description of Twenty-First Century technology in the form of the "image that can speak" is, indeed, sounding more and more scientific and less and less fictional.

 
*For more information related to this article, please check out the following video: Survivors Ch. #19 - Tribulation Force (Resisting The Great Tribulation!) - Apocalyptic Movie

Appendix, Chapter 21

 

Revelation 13:11-17. I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth. He had two horns like a lamb, and he spoke as a dragon. He exercises all the power of the first Beast before him, and causes the earth and them that dwell in it to worship the first Beast, whose deadly wound was healed. He does great wonders so that he makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives them that dwell on the earth by those miracles that he had power to do in the sight of the Beast, saying to them that dwell on the earth that they should make an image to the Beast which had the wound by a sword and did live. He had power to give life to the image of the Beast, that the image of the Beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the Beast should be killed. He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand or in their foreheads, that no one might buy or sell save those that had the mark or the name of the Beast or the number of his name.

 

2 Thessalonians 2:2-4; 8-12. Be not soon shaken in mind … that the day of Christ is at hand. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that day will not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped, so that he as God sits in the Temple of God, showing himself that he is God. Don't you remember that when I was yet with you, I told you these things?

 

Then will that Wicked One be revealed, whom the Lord will consume with the spirit of his mouth, and will destroy with the brightness of his coming, even him whose coming is after the working of Satan, with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish, because they received not the love of the truth that they might be saved. For this cause God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie, that all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

 

Matthew 16:4. A wicked and adulterous generation seeks a sign. No sign will be given it but the sign of the prophet Jonah.

 

Revelation 11:5. If anyone will hurt them [the two witnesses], fire proceeds out of their mouth, and devours their enemies.