And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
And I stood on the sand of the sea — This also was in the vision.
And I saw — Soon after the woman flew away.
A wild beast coming up — He comes up twice; first from the sea, then from the abyss. He comes from the sea before the seven phials; "the great whore" comes after them. O reader, this is a subject wherein we also are deeply concerned, and which must he treated, not as a point of curiosity, but as a solemn warning from God! The danger is near. Be armed both against force and fraud, even with the whole armour of God.
Out of the sea — That is, Europe. So the three woes (the first being in Persia, the second about the Euphrates) move in a line from east to west. This beast is the Romish Papacy, as it came to a point six hundred years since, stands now, and will for some time longer. To this, and no other power on earth, agrees the whole text, and every part of it in every point; as we may see, with the utmost evidence, from the propositions following: - PROP. 1. It is one and the same beast, having seven heads, and ten horns, which is described in this and in the seventeenth chapter. Of consequence, his heads are the same, and his horns also. PROP. 2. This beast is a spiritually secular power, opposite to the kingdom of Christ. A power not merely spiritual or ecclesiastical, nor merely secular or political but a mixture of both. He is a secular prince; for a crown, yea, and a kingdom are ascribed to him. And yet he is not merely secular; for he is also a false prophet. PROP. 3. The beast has a strict connexion with the city of Rome. This clearly appears from the seventeenth chapter. PROP. 4. The beast is now existing. He is not past. for Rome is now existing; and it is not till after the destruction of Rome that the beast is thrown into the lake. He is not altogether to come: for the second woe is long since past, after which the third came quickly; and presently after it began, the beast rose out of the sea. Therefore, whatever he is, he is now existing. PROP. 5. The beast is the Romish Papacy. This manifestly follows from the third and fourth propositions; the beast has a strict connexion with the city of Rome; and the beast is now existing: therefore, either there is some other power more strictly connected with that city, or the Pope is the beast. PROP. 6. The Papacy, or papal kingdom, began long ago. The most remarkable particulars relating to this are here subjoined; taken so high as abundantly to show the rise of the beast, and brought down as low as our own time, in order to throw a light on the following part of the prophecy: - A.D. 1033. Benedict the Ninth, a child of eleven years old, is bishop of Rome, and occasions grievous disorders for above twenty years. A.D. 1048. Damasus II. introduces the use of the triple crown. A.D. 1058. The church of Milan is, after long opposition, subjected to the Roman. A.D. 1073. Hildebrand, or Gregory VII., comes to the throne. A.D. 1076. He deposes and excommunicates the emperor. A.D. 1077. He uses him shamefully and absolves him. A.D. 1080. He excommunicates him again, and sends a crown to Rodulph, his competitor. A.D. 1083. Rome is taken. Gregory flees. Clement is made Pope, and crowns the emperor. A.D. 1085. Gregory VII. dies at Salerno. A.D. 1095. Urban II. holds the first Popish council, at Clermont and gives rise to the crusades. A.D. 1111. Paschal II. quarrels furiously with the emperor. A.D. 1123. The first western general council in the Lateran. The marriage of priests is forbidden. A.D. 1132. Innocent II declares the emperor to be the Pope's liege-man, or vassal. A.D. 1143. The Romans set up a governor of their own, independent on Innocent II. He excommunicates them, and dies. Celestine II. is, by an important innovation, chosen to the Popedom without the suffrage of the people; the right of choosing the Pope is taken from the people, and afterward from the clergy, and lodged in the Cardinals alone. A.D. 1152. Eugene II. assumes the power of canonizing saints. A.D. 1155. Adrian IV. puts Arnold of Brixia to death for speaking against the secular power of the Papacy. A.D. 1159. Victor IV. is elected and crowned. But Alexander III. conquers him and his successor. A.D. 1168. Alexander III. excommunicates the emperor, and brings him so low, that, A.D. 1177. he submits to the Pope's setting his foot on his neck. A.D. 1204. Innocent III. sets up the Inquisition against the Vaudois. A.D. 1208. He proclaims a crusade against them. A.D. 1300. Boniface VIII. introduces the year of jubilee. A.D. 1305. The Pope's residence is removed to Avignon. A.D. 1377. It is removed back to Rome. A.D. 1378. The fifty years' schism begins. A.D. 1449. Felix V., the last Antipope, submits to Nicholas V. A.D. 1517. The Reformation begins. A.D. 1527. Rome is taken and plundered. A.D. 1557. Charles V. resigns the empire; Ferdinand I. thinks the being crowned by the Pope superfluous. A.D. 1564. Pius IV. confirms the Council of Trent. A.D. 1682. Doctrines highly derogatory to the Papal authority are openly taught in France. A.D. 1713. The constitution Unigenitus. A.D. 1721. Pope Gregory VII. canonized anew. He who compares this short table with what will be observed, verse 3, Revelation 19:19. OBS. 23. Daniel's fourth beast is the Roman monarchy, from the beginning of it, till the thrones are set. This, therefore, comprises both the apocalyptic beast, and the woman, and many other things. This monarchy is like a river which runs from its fountain in one channel, but in its course sometimes takes in other rivers, sometimes is itself parted into several streams, yet is still one continued river. The Roman power was at first undivided; but it was afterwards divided into various channels, till the grand division into the eastern and western empires, which likewise underwent various changes. Afterward the kings of the Heruli. Goths, Lombards, the exarchs of Ravenna, the Romans themselves the emperors, French and German, besides other kings, seized several parts of the Roman power. Now whatever power the Romans had before Gregory VII., that Daniel's beast contains; whatever power the Papacy has had from Gregory VII., this the apocalyptic beast represents, but this very beast (and so Rome with its last authority) is comprehended under that of Daniel.
And upon his heads a name of blasphemy — To ascribe to a man what belongs to God alone is blasphemy. Such a name the beast has, not on his horns, nor on one head, but on all. The beast himself bears that name, and indeed through his whole duration. This is the name of Papa or Pope; not in the innocent sense wherein it was formerly given to all bishops, but in that high and peculiar sense wherein it is now given to the bishop of Rome by himself, and his followers: a name which comprises the whole pre-eminence of the highest and most holy father upon earth. Accordingly among the above cited sayings of Gregory, those two stand together, that his "name alone should be recited in the churches;" and that it is "the only name in the world." So both the church and the world were to name no other father on the face of the earth.
 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.
The three first beasts in Daniel are like "a leopard," "a bear," and "a lion." In all parts, except his feet and mouth, this beast was like a leopard or female panther; which is fierce as a lion or bear, but is also swift and subtle. Such is the Papacy, which has partly by subtilty, partly by force, gained power over so many nations. The extremely various usages, manners, and ways of the Pope, may likewise be compared to the spots of the leopard.
And his feet were as the feet of a bear — Which are very strong, and armed with sharp claws. And, as clumsy as they seem, he can therewith walk, stand upright, climb, or seize anything. So does this beast seize and take for his prey whatever comes within the reach of his claws.
And his mouth was as the mouth of a lion — To roar, and to devour.
And the dragon — Whose vassal and vicegerent he is.
Gave him his power — His own strength and innumerable forces.
And his throne — So that he might command whatever he would, having great, absolute authority. The dragon had his throne in heathen Rome, so long as idolatry and persecution reigned there. And after he was disturbed in his possession, yet would he never wholly resign, till he gave it to the beast in Christian Rome, so called.
 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.
And I saw one — Or the first.
Of his heads as it were wounded — So it appeared as soon as ever it rose. The beast is first described more generally, then more particularly, both in this and in the seventeenth chapter. The particular description here respects the former parts; there, the latter parts of his duration: only that some circumstances relating to the former are repeated in the seventeenth chapter. Revelation 13:14 that is, by the bloody resistance of the secular potentates, particularly the German emperors. These had for a long season had the city of Rome, with her bishop, under their jurisdiction. Gregory determined to cast off this yoke from his own, and to lay it on the emperor's shoulders. He broke loose, and excommunicated the emperor, who maintained his right by force, and gave the Pope such a blow, that one would have thought the beast must have been killed thereby, immediately after his coming up. But he recovered, and grew stronger than before. The first head of the beast extends from Gregory VII., at least to Innocent III. In that tract of time the beast was much wounded by the emperors. But, notwithstanding, the wound was healed. Two deadly symptoms attended this wound: 1. Schisms and open ruptures in the church. For while the emperors asserted their right, there were from the year 1080 to the year 1176 only, five open divisions, and at least as many antipopes, some of whom were, indeed, the rightful Popes. This was highly dangerous to the papal kingdoms. But a still more dangerous symptom was, 2. The rising of the nobility at Rome, who would not suffer their bishop to be a secular prince, particularly over themselves. Under Innocent II. they carried their point, re-established the ancient commonwealth, took away from the Pope the government of the city, and left him only his episcopal authority. "At this," says the historian, "Innocent II. and Celestine II. fretted themselves to death: Lucius II., as he attacked the capitol, wherein the senate was, sword in hand, was struck with a stone, and died in a few days: Eugene III., Alexander III., and Lucius III., were driven out of the city: Urban III. and Gregory VIII. spent their days in banishment At length they came to an agreement with Clement III., who was himself a Roman." And the whole earth - The whole western world.
Wondered after the wild beast — That is, followed him with wonder, in his councils, his crusades, and his jubilees. This refers not only to the first head, but also to the four following.
 And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?
And they worshipped the dragon — Even in worshipping the beast, although they knew it not.
And worshipped the wild beast — Paying him such honour as was not paid to any merely secular potentate. That very title, "Our most holy Lord," was never given to any other monarch on earth.
Saying, Who is like the wild beast — "Who is like him?" is a peculiar attribute of God; but that this is constantly attributed to the beast, the books of all his adherents show.
 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.
And there was given him — By the dragon, through the permission of God.
A mouth speaking great things and blasphemy — The same is said of the little horn on the fourth beast in Daniel. Nothing greater, nothing more blasphemous, can be conceived, than what the Popes have said of themselves, especially before the Reformation.
And authority was given him forty-two months — The beginning of these is not to be dated immediately from his ascent out of the sea, but at some distance from it.
 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
To blaspheme his name — Which many of the Popes have done explicitly, and in the most dreadful manner.
And his tabernacle, even them that dwell in heaven — (For God himself dwelleth in the inhabitance of heaven.) Digging up the bones of many of them, and cursing them with the deepest execrations.
 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.
And it was given him — That is, God permitted him.
To make war with his saints — With the Waldenses and Albigenses. It is a vulgar mistake, that the Waldenses were so called from Peter Waldo of Lyons. They were much more ancient than him; and their true name was Vallenses or Vaudois from their inhabiting the valleys of Lucerne and Agrogne. This name, Vallenses, after Waldo appeared about the year 1160, was changed by the Papists into Waldenses, on purpose to represent them as of modern original. The Albigenses were originally people of Albigeois, part of Upper Languedoc, where they considerably prevailed, and possessed several towns in the year 1200. Against these many of the Popes made open war. Till now the blood of Christians had been shed only by the heathens or Arians; from this time by scarce any but the Papacy. In the year 1208 Innocent III. proclaimed a crusade against them. In June, 1209, the army assembled at Toulouse; from which time abundance of blood was shed, and the second army of martyrs began to be added to the first, who had cried "from beneath the altar." And ever since, the beast has been warring against the saints, and shedding their blood like water.
And authority was given him over every tribe and people — Particularly in Europe. And when a way was found by sea into the East Indies, and the West, these also were brought under his authority.
 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
And all that dwell upon the earth will worship him — All will be carried away by the torrent, but the little flock of true believers. The name of these only is written in the Lamb's book of life. And if any even of these "make shipwreck of the faith," he will blot them "out of his book;" although they were written therein from (that is, before) the foundation of the world, Revelation 17:8.
 If any man have an ear, let him hear.
If any one have an ear, let him hear — It was said before, "He that hath an ear, let him hear." This expression, if any, seems to imply, that scarce will any that hath an ear be found.
Let him hear — With all attention the following warning, and the whole description of the beast,
 He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.
If any man leadeth into captivity — God will in due time repay the followers of the beast in their own kind. Meanwhile, here is the patience and faithfulness of the saints exercised: their patience, by enduring captivity or imprisonment; their faithfulness, by resisting unto blood.
 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 I saw another wild beast — So he is once termed to show his fierceness and strength, but in all other places, "the false prophet." He comes to confirm the kingdom of the first beast.
Coming up — After the other had long exercised his authority.
Out of the earth — Out of Asia. But he is not yet come, though he cannot be far off for he is to appear at the end of the forty-two months of the first beast.
And he had two horns like a lamb — A mild, innocent appearance.
But he spake like a dragon — Venomous, fiery, dreadful. So do those who are zealous for the beast.
 And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
And he exerciseth all the authority of the first wild beast — Described in the second, fourth, fifth, and seventh verses. 3,5,7 Before him - For they are both together.
Whose deadly wound was healed — More throughly healed by means of the second beast.
 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men,
He maketh fire — Real fire.
To come down — By the power of the devil.
 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the 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 did live.
Before the wild beast — Whose usurped majesty is confirmed by these wonders.
Saying to them — As if it were from God.
To make an image to the wild beast — Like that of Nebuchadnezzar, whether of gold, silver, or stone. The original image will be set up where the beast himself shall appoint. But abundance of copies will be taken, which may be carried into all parts, like those of Diana of Ephesus.
 And he had power to give life unto 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.
So that the image of the wild beast should speak — Many instances of this kind have been already among the Papists, as well as the heathens.
And as many as will not worship — When it is required of them; as it will be of all that buy or sell.
Shall be killed — By this the Pope manifests that he is antichrist, directly contrary to Christ. It is Christ who shed his own blood; it is antichrist who sheds the blood of others. And yet, it seems, his last and most cruel persecution is to come. This persecution, the reverse of all that preceded, will, as we may gather from many scriptures, fall chiefly on the outward court worshippers, the formal Christians. It is probable that few real, inward Christians shall perish by it: on the contrary, those who "watch and pray always" shall be "accounted worthy to escape all these things, and to stand before the Son of man," Luke 21:36.
 And 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:
On their forehead — The most zealous of his followers will probably choose this. Others may receive it on their hand.
 And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
That no man might buy or sell — Such edicts have been published long since against the poor Vaudois. But he that had the mark, namely, the name of the first beast, or the number of his name - The name of the beast is that which he bears through his whole duration; namely, that of Papa or Pope: the number of his name is the whole time during which he bears this name. Whosoever, therefore, receives the mark of the beast does as much as if he said expressly, "I acknowledge the present Papacy, as proceeding from God;" or, "I acknowledge that what St. Gregory VII. has done, according to his legend, (authorized by Benedict XIII.,) and what has been maintained in virtue thereof, by his successors to this day, is from God." By the former, a man hath the name of the beast as a mark; by the latter, the number of his name. In a word, to have the name of the beast is, to acknowledge His papal Holiness; to have the number of his name is, to acknowledge the papal succession. The second beast will enforce the receiving this mark under the severest penalties.
 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.
Here is the wisdom — To be exercised. "The patience of the saints" availed against the power of the first beast: the wisdom God giveth them will avail against the subtilty of the second.
Let him that hath understanding — Which is a gift of God, subservient to that wisdom.
Count the number of the wild beast — Surely none can be blamed for attempting to obey this command.
For it is the number of a man — A number of such years as are common among men. And his number is six hundred and sixty-six years - So long shall he endure from his first appearing.