The Biggest Idol – I
People seem to be fascinated by images and prophecies in the Bible. Many mainstream churches strive on this fascination and to one degree or another take advantage of it. Make up the biggest, most unbelievable story and people will flock to your doors.
In the world of prophecy two books in the Bible stand out among all others, Danial and Revelation. It’s common to see these two books combined and studied together to one degree or another. In this case, we will look at a couple of the most common images in those two books. We will compare the image Nebuchadnezzar built and compare that to the image designed by one of the beasts in Revelation chapter 13.
King Nebuchadnezzar made a gold statue ninety feet tall and nine feet wide and set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon. (Daniel 3:1 NLTse).
I wanted to use a Bible version that listed the dimensions of the statue in feet. The important thing is, the ration of 10 to 1 between height and width. I’ve seen many people teach on this chapter using an artist conception or drawing of the statue depicting it as a a man. Nebuchadnezzar in particular. In those studies, philosophers tell people, “Nebuchadnezzar was told he was the head of gold in Daniel;s dream. And that head of gold would give way to a chest of silver. So Nebuchadnezzar believed that if he built a gold statue of himself, his kingdom would last forever.” Of course nothing like that was ever recorded in the Bible. Philosophers took one sentence out of the Bible and mixed in what they considered to be a little common sense. But wait. The statue in Daniel’s dream was a symbol created in Heaven. No one will argue with that. On the other hand, the statue Nebuchadnezzar made was physical, created on earth. Now we are beginning to get somewhere.
What happens when people begin mixing spiritual symbols with physical things? People will read and teach the entire chapter in Revelation 13. They all seems to agree that chapter uses symbolism all the way up to the mark of the beast. Then they insist that has to be a physical mark. According to them, the story quickly and unexpectedly changed from spiritual symbolism to physical. Why? No one is going to try to explain why. That would ruin their entire concept on prophecy. Those philosophers just want people to take their word. No questions asked.
There is another image or statue in Revelation chapter 13 we should look at. We’re not told a lot about that image, but we know who designed it.
And he deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by means of those miracles which 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 lived. And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause to be killed as many as would not worship the image of the beast. (Revelation 13:14-15 KJV21).
We know the lamb with two horns had people make an image to the first beast. The key phrase here is, “an image to.” They didn’t make an image of the first beast. People build an image to the first beast. What is or was that first beast?
We know that beast looked like a leopard. Which makes me think the beast is good at one thing, camouflaging itself. In other words, it doesn’t want to be seen or noticed until it is too late. It appears the camouflaging didn’t work because the beast suffered a wound to the head.
We don’t have to identify the first beast or the second beast to understand the symbolism for both of those images or statues. All we have to do is look at a few recorded facts about those beasts.
Then the beast was allowed to speak great blasphemies against God. And he was given authority to do whatever he wanted for forty-two months. And he spoke terrible words of blasphemy against God, slandering his name and his temple–that is, those who live in heaven. And the beast was allowed to wage war against God’s holy people and to conquer them. And he was given authority to rule over every tribe and people and language and nation. And all the people who belong to this world worshiped the beast. They are the ones whose names were not written in the Book of Life before the world was made–the Book that belongs to the Lamb who was slaughtered. Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand. (Revelation 13:5-9 NLTse).
We know the beast speaks out against God. How does he do that? We aren’t given any specific details. We are just told this beast slanders God, and those who live in Heaven. What does that mean? We know all the visions and images in Revelation originated in Heaven. We also know, no one in Heaven had any problem understanding any of those visions or images. If we mixed in a little common sense, wouldn’t great blasphemies against God pointing to people who want to add their own interpretations to the Bible without consulting God or His Word? We will cover more on that later.
The lamb with two horns is another spiritual symbol. It looks like a lamb but does not act or sound like a lamb. In other words, the lamb is more of a disguise.
And it exercises all the authority of the first beast before him, and causes the earth and those dwelling in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. And it does great wonders, so that it makes fire come down from the heaven onto the earth in the sight of men. And it deceives those dwelling on the earth, because of the miracles which were given to it to do before the beast, saying to those dwelling on the earth that they should make an image to the beast who had the wound by a sword and lived. (Revelation 13:12-14 MKJV).
The lamb is much like the first beast. It seems Satan’s first plan didn’t work. So he had to come up with a new plan. The key word here is, “deceives.” In other words, the lamb misleads people. How does he mislead them? That’s where we have to look back to the previous story, in this case beast to find a clue. “Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand.” This leads us to a few interesting stories in the Bible. Jesus quoted those words from Isaiah.
He who has ears to hear, let him hear. And the disciples said to Him, Why do You speak to them in parables? He answered and said to them, Because it is given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of Heaven, but it is not given to them. For whoever has, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance. But whoever does not have, from him shall be taken away even that which he has. Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they see not, and hearing they hear not; nor do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah which said, “By hearing you shall hear and shall not understand; and seeing you shall see and shall not perceive; for this people’s heart has become gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and they have closed their eyes, lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.” (Matthew 13:9-15 MKJV).
We gather a host of details when we look back and read the entire chapter in Isaiah. Do you see how the Bible provided its own answers?
In the year that King Uzziah died I then saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and His train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphs; each one had six wings; with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one cried to another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is Jehovah of Hosts; the whole earth full of His glory. (Isaiah 6:1-3 MKJV).
Isaiah had no problem telling people exactly where he got his information from. Isaiah got all of his information from Heaven. Lesson 1. Reveal your source. Tell people if your information is from Heaven or earth. In plain simple terms, is your information from God or Satan who rules and directs the beasts in Revelation?
And I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then I said, Here am I; send me! And He said, Go, and tell this people, You hear indeed, but do not understand; and seeing you see, but do not know. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their hearts, and turn back, and be healed. (Isaiah 6:8-10 MKJV).
Isaiah is basically told, no matter what message he delivers, people will not believe it. They are stuck on their stories made up on earth. We are also told that the messages Isaiah receives and is sent to earth with are directly from Heaven.
So where does this all get is with the story about Nebuchadnezzar’s statue? Lets look at those dimensions again. Ninety feet tall and nine feet wide. Those are not the dimensions of any man on earth. The proportions are not even close. We can look at a few examples to see how some people tried to work around that problem. Why? To make the rest of their stories appear believable. Are those messages from Heaven or earth. From earth of course. The same place those beasts in Revelation 13 originated. Is this coming all together?
Now let’s look at the exact proportions of that statue Nebuchadnezzar had made. What does it look like? A tall, skinny statue. Like a pole of some sort. Okay, so some people try to go over a host of roads explaining what a pole is supposed to represent using the world to explain it. But let’s look at the war that God and Satan are fighting. Revelation tells us, it is a war of words. There is one word shaped like that statue Nebuchadnezzar build. It is the word, “I.”
People make up stories to attract attention to themselves. They want t be noticed. They want to figure out things in the Bible no one has been able to understand. They want to be the first to come up with some clever answer. They are worshiping the biggest idol of all – I.