(11) 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.
In this section of John’s vision, he sees the beast from the earth (symbolic of false religions and false teachers).
In his description of this beast, John states “he had two horns like a lamb”. This description helps us to understand the very deceitful nature of this beast. Although this beast is very harmful to man, he looks very innocent, meek and kind…. Just like a lamb. They look and many times sound very tame and harmless. Their teaching honors men and degrades the truths about our God; while they minimize our need of the true Christ and emphasize our great need of another god.
These other gods can take the form of idols made with men’s hands; or the wealth, fame and authority of this world; or perhaps, present man, himself, as the key to resolving all of our problems and shortcomings. But in reality, the god they present to mankind is the god of this world, Satan, and the need to follow his teachings to their ultimate destruction.
This reminds us of the teaching of Christ, in which he emphasizes that the nature of false religions, and the individuals who teach their doctrine, is appearing deceitfully gentle while being inwardly destructive….
Mat 7:15-17 KJV – “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.”
Christ not only emphasizes the deceitful nature of false teachers and religions, but He goes further and helps us to understand how we can recognize them in spite of their deceitful appearance. He tells us that “Ye shall know them by their fruits”.
So what are the fruits we are to look for when he attempt to discern between true and false teaching?
Teachers of the truth will bear the following fruits as a part of their teachings….
- Their teachings will align themselves with the teachings of God’s Word (1 Tim 6:3-5)
- Their message will always exalt Christ as the true Messiah, Lord and Savior of the world. (Acts 4:8-12, 1 John 2:22-23)
- Their message will present man as in desperate need of Christ, and Christ alone. (Roms 3:23-26)
- Their message will always present the remedy to mankind’s sinful condition as described in the gospel… Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection, along with its proofs . (Gals 1:8-9)
- Their message will center on the need for faith, apart from works, for the receipt of salvation (Acts 3:15-16)
These are just a few of the marks of a true messenger sent by God to minister to a lost and dying world. May we all seek out churches and men of God who hold forth these fruits in their teaching ministry.
For an in depth look at these sections of the Revelation: