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The crowns of the Leopard-like, however, show that he represents the period in which the kings took
back their crowns—rulership. Thus, John's beast reveals a world after the fall of the Papacy where the nations regain their civil powers and independence. This again is showing that the Leopard-like Beast prefigures the world primarily after the collapse of the Vatican in 1798. This is just more proof that the beast is a symbol of the world we live in today.
Now, looking at the heads, we see that one was wounded but later healed. It is commonly understood that the one wounded head is a clear symbol of the Papacy who received its fatal blow during the Protestant reformation culminating in the arrest of an already weakened Rome. So if one head is a religious body, then the other six unharmed heads must be other religious bodies—churches, if you will. The number seven shows "completeness", comprehensiveness. 5 In short, it means that the heads portray
Christendom in its entirety, and the horns being ten, portray the civil governments that were at one time under the rule of Rome, but were later freed. Thus both horns and heads must represent the
world today, particularly western
beasts represented the world in their day. In other words, this first beast of Revelation 13 could not represent the Papacy alone, but a
universal system led by Western ideals of which the Papacy is only a part.
In summary, this multi-headed,
multi-horned beast, must represent a world comprised of many Christian churches and nations, born and developed out
of the struggles of the Dark Ages and Papal Rome; a world dominated by Catholicism,
Protestantism, Democracy, and Capitalism.
If this sounds like Western culture, you're right! Is it not true that our present world is led by the West? Western culture, the culture which broke away from Rome, now indoctrinates the world. Generally speaking, everyone covets western lifestyle. No wonder the Leopard-like Beast boasts: "Who is like unto the beast? Who is able to make war with him?" (Verse 4). And no marvel "all the world wondered
after the beast [the system]. . .
and the dragon gives him "power." (Verses 3, 4). (Revelation 13,
verses 11 -18), describes the second beast in this chapter:
The Second Beast
“ And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon. And he excerciseth all the power of the the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. . . he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six." (Verses 11, 12, 15 - 18.)