The "Image to the Beast" in the Judgment Hour
The "mediation of Christ" for lost humanity dead in trespass and sin is the very heart of the Gospel. God is calling all the world to judgment to face their life's record and be judged according to the spirit and letter of God's holy Law. There is no one righteous enough to pass the scrutiny of this judgment because as Paul clearly demonstrates in Romans 1-2, all are under the just condemnation of God and all continually fall short of the glory of God. There is only one way to pass from the verdict of "death" unto the verdict of "life". The repentant sinner who is justified by faith in the sinless life and atoning death of our Lord Jesus Christ is declared righteous and accounted as if he were as sinless and holy as Jesus Himself. There is NOW and on the final Day, no condemnation to all repentant sinners who believe in and continue to believe in the grace of God through the Lord Jesus Christ who, though He knew no sin, became sin for us so that we may be declared righteous in Him. In the gospel proclamation to all the world, the judgment Day has ARRIVED to all who hear the call to repent and believe. NOW is the day of salvation to all who believe and NOW is the day of condemnation to all who refuse the offer of forgiveness through unbelief.
"For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on Him is not condemned, but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil." John 3: 17-19
The hour of God's judgment has COME in the gospel message of the Lord Jesus Christ. Since Pentecost, Christ has been enthroned as the Judge of all the earth and the Judgment Day has begun in the mighty out pouring of the Holy Spirit in Pentecostal power. On the day of Pentecost the Judgment began with the House of God with the preaching of Christ to all the nation of Jerusalem gathered at the feast and the Judgment has since then been making its way into all the world through the preaching of the sealing message of Jesus Christ our Righteousness to all who repent of dead works and believe.
Those who oppose and reject the message of the grace of God in Christ receive the 'mark of the Beast" and are marked for destruction on the final day. The unsealing of the Everlasting Covenant as seen in Revelation 5 began at Pentecost and will end when the final seal is opened and the final trumpet shall sound. The number of the elect of God, symbolically called the spiritual "144,000", are those who are "called out" (eklesia in Greek) of Babylon throughout the entire Christian era. .
The entire Christian era is symbolically called the "1260 days" or "3 and 1/2 years" in apocalyptic biblical prophecy. During this era the Church and the gospel have been persecuted and "cast down" by the Dragon, the Devil, through his representative called the "Seven Headed Beast with 10 horns". After this Beast, Imperial Rome, received its deadly wound with the wounding of its seventh head in the fall of the last Roman emperor, there arose the Lamb-like "False Prophet" who made an "Image to the Beast" and continued on in the work of persecuting the true gospel and the invisible Church of Jesus.
This "False Prophet" makes an "Image to the Beast" and commands all the world to worship the Beast. The Roman Empire and the rule of the Caesars was this Beast with seven heads. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the "ten horns" of the Beast became the general outline of the nations that became medieval Europe and there arose the power called the "lamb-like beast" in Revelation 13 and called the "Man of Sin" by Paul in 2 Thessalonians 2.
The successor to the Pontiffs of the fallen Roman Empire became the Pontiffs of the Roman Papacy. The false gods and the false religious system of the Gnostic mystery religions of the pagan Roman Pantheon were absorbed into the Christian faith by Gnostic apostate pseudo-christians who entered the church and, by paganizing the Christian faith, cast the truth to the ground and made an "image to the Beast" of ancient Rome. The religion of the pagan gods of Rome became the religion of the paganized Christian religion of the Papacy. Satan had entered the temple of God and erected the "image to the Beast" and taken away the true apostolic gospel of justification by grace alone through faith alone in the sinless life and atoning death of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Sinless Lamb of God. The Mediation of Christ and His merits as our great High Priest who presents His people as righteous and sinless through faith in His blood was "cast down to the ground" and replaced with a counterfeit gospel of salvation by works of righteousness in the heart of the believer.
The Image to the Beast, a duplicate of the religion of Imperial Rome and the religion of ancient Babylonish worship of Nimrod at the tower of Babel, declared through its "False Prophet" that all the world could only become righteous enough and good enough by coming to its altars and receiving its sacraments and doing good works of charity to be sinless enough to be saved in heaven.
It has been through the underground invisible true church in the "wilderness" that the true gospel has been preserved and kept alive. Throughout the Christian era, God has had His "Two Witnesses" (Rev 11) and His "Woman in the Wilderness" (Rev 12) who by faith alone in the merits of Christ have received the 'seal" of God's approval through faith in the mediation of the Lamb of God in the heavenly sanctuary for their acceptance with God.
This mighty and powerful underground witness of the true Gospel began to break forth into all the world by the time of the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century and this reformation will be completed at the very final end of time in the evangelical gospel message which calls all who are still in Babylonish captivity to come out of her my people. The final pronouncement of the fall of Babylon shall be declared and swell to a mighty final loud cry of the angel of Revelation 18 which unmasks and causes the final and everlasting spiritual fall of the Beast, the Image to the Beast, and the False Prophet (the false trinity of the Dragon).
God bless. Bill D.