The false prophet of the end times is described in Revelation 13:11-15, 16:13, 19:20, 20:10). Together with the Antichrist and Satan, who empowers both of them. The false prophet is the third party in the
( unholy ) trinity. The apostle John describes this person and gives us clues to identifying him when he shows up. First, he comes out of the earth. This could mean he comes up from the pit of hell with all the demonic powers of hell at his command. It could also mean he comes from lowly circumstances, secret and unknown until he bursts onto the world stage at the right hand of the Antichrist. He is depicted as having horns like a lamb, while speaking like a dragon. The horns on lambs are merely small bumps on their heads until the lamb grows into a ram. Rather than having the Antichrist’s multiplicity of heads and horns, showing his power and might and fierceness, the false prophet comes like a lamb, winsomely, with persuasive words that elicit sympathy and good will from others. He may be an extraordinary preacher or orator whose demonically empowered words will deceive the multitudes. But he speaks like a dragon, which means his message is the message of a dragon. Revelation 12:9 identifies the dragon as the devil and Satan. Verse 12 gives us the false prophet’s mission on earth, which is to force humanity to worship the Antichrist. He has all the authority of the Antichrist because, like him, the false prophet is empowered by Satan. It is not clear whether people are forced to worship the Antichrist or whether they are so enamored of these powerful beings that they fall for the deception and worship him willingly. The fact that the second beast uses miraculous signs and wonders, including fire from heaven, to establish the credibility of both of them would seem to indicate that people will fall before them in adoration of their power and message. Verse 14 goes on to say the deception will be so great that the people will set up an idol to the Antichrist, "the image of the beast," and worship it. This is reminiscent of the huge golden image of Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 3) before which all were to bow down and pay homage. Revelation 14:9-11, however, describes the ghastly fate that awaits those who worship the image of the Antichrist. Those who survive the terrors of the tribulation to this point will be faced with two hard choices. Those who refuse to worship the image of the beast will be subject to death (Revelation 14:15), but those who do worship him will incur the wrath of GOD. The image will be extraordinary in that it will be able to “speak.” Whatever the image is (a statue? a hologram? an android? a human-animal hybrid? a clone?), it will have some kind of ability to breathe forth the message of the Antichrist and the false prophet. Along with being the spokesman for them, the image will condemn to death those who refuse to worship the unholy pair. In our technological world, it is not hard to imagine such a scenario. Whoever the false prophet turns out to be, the final world deception and the final apostasy will be great, and the whole world will be caught up in it. The deceivers and false teachers we see today are the forerunners of the Antichrist and the false prophet, and we must not be deceived by them. These false teachers abound, and they are moving us toward a final satanic kingdom. We must faithfully proclaim the saving gospel of Jesus Christ and rescue the souls of men and women from the coming disaster.
*In Revelation chapter 12, John sees a vision of a woman "clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars" (Revelation 12:1). Note the similarity between this description and the description that Joseph gave of his father Jacob (Israel) and his mother and their children (Genesis 37:9-11). The twelve stars refer to the twelve tribes of Israel. So the woman in Revelation 12 is Israel.Additional evidence for this interpretation is that Revelation 12:2-5 speaks of the woman being with child and giving birth. While it is true that Mary gave birth to Jesus, it is also true that Jesus, the son of David from the tribe of Judah, came from Israel. In a sense, Israel gave birth—or brought forth—Christ Jesus. Verse 5 says that the woman’s child was "a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up to God and to His throne." Clearly, this is describing Jesus. Jesus ascended to heaven (Acts 1:9-11) and will one day establish His kingdom on earth (Revelation 20:4-6), and He will rule it with perfect judgment (the “rod of iron”; see Psalm 2:7-9).The woman’s flight into the wilderness for 1,260 days refers to the future time called the Great Tribulation. Twelve hundred, sixty days is 42 months (of 30 days each), which is the same as 3 1/2 years. Halfway through the Tribulation period, the Beast (the Antichrist) will set an image of himself up in the temple that will be built in Jerusalem. This is the abomination that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 24:15 and Mark 13:14. When the Beast does this, he breaks the peace pact he had made with Israel, and the nation has to flee for safety—possibly to Petra (also see Matthew 24; Daniel 9:27). This escape of the Jews is pictured as the woman fleeing into the wilderness.Revelation 12:12-17 speaks of how the devil will make war against Israel, trying to destroy her (Satan knows his time is short, relatively speaking—see Revelation 20:1-3, 10). It also reveals that God will protect Israel in the wilderness. Revelation 12:14 says Israel will be protected from the devil for "a time, times, and half a time (“a time” = 1 year; “times” = 2 years; “half a time” = one-half year; in other words, 3 1/2 years). Jews who held fast by the word.