In the Bible, a "beast" represents a government or political system, interchangeably with the leader of that system. The ten-horned beast of Revelation 13 has very strong parallels to the 10 horned beast in Daniel 7, which describes the same entity. This is the end times Antichrist and his empire.
Two Pillars: Guns and Money
After his initial rise to power, the Antichrist is a military conqueror, who ultimately achieves political domination over the whole world. The authority of the first beast is clearly in the military/political domain.
And they worshiped the dragon, for he had given his authority to the beast, and they worshiped the beast, saying, “Who is like the beast, and who can fight against it?” Revelation 13:4 ESV
He shall honor the god of fortresses instead of these. A god whom his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. He shall deal with the strongest fortresses with the help of a foreign god. (Daniel 11:38-39a ESV).(The Daniel passage goes on to describe the numerous battles the Antichrist fights).
Revelation 13 describes another beast, later called the "False Prophet", who tricks the world into worshiping the Antichrist using counterfeit signs and wonders. He exercises the authority of the Antichrist on his behalf. In addition to making people set up an image of the Antichrist, he forces everyone to wear a mark on their right hand or forehead, which is required for buying and selling. This mark is connected to the number 666, which is the number of the Antichrist. His power is clearly in the religious/monetary domain.
Also it causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name. This calls for wisdom: let the one who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man, and his number is 666. (Revelation 13:17-18 ESV)To summarize, one guy controls the guns, and the other guy controls the money. It is safe to say this kind of political arrangement would not happen overnight. Considering the very strong case that the EU is the end times Roman empire, we would expect to see the embryo of these two beasts starting to materialize.
Lead Antichrist candidate, Javier Solana, believes that the EU should build a defense pillar in the same way that it has a monetary pillar. Although the monetary pillar is a lot farther along than the defense pillar, these two pillars are starting to materialize. This diagram from another think tank in 2015 illustrates these two pillars, side by side.
These two pillars are in some ways very symmetric, as the chart above illustrates. Though the chart above does a very good job displaying the similarities between the two, I will add some categories to further describe the similarities.
Economic & Monetary Union
European Defense Union
Criteria for membership
Maastricht convergence criteria
PESCO membership criteria
European Central Bank
European Defense Agency
European Stability Mechanism
European Defense Fund
Eurogroup President/ESM Chairman
“Defense Group” President /EDF Chairman
EU High Representative
Eurozone Pillar: Recent Developments
Ever since the election of the new French President Macron, he has desired a common eurozone finance minister. German Chancellor Merkel has expressed openness to discussing this possibility. The European Commission proposes merging the commissioner in charge of Economic and Financial Affairs with the Eurogroup President. A eurozone finance minister position could be a strong candidate for the future False Prophet.
Defense Pillar: Recent Developments
On Thursday, France and Germany talked about the potential criteria for being involved in the EU's new defense club. Although they didn't state the specific criteria from the press conference, an insider from the meeting disclosed the details to B2 Le Club, a French CSDP magazine I now subscribe to. The media's main announcement was that they would be working on a new fighter jet together. Behind closed doors they came to some other conclusions about membership criteria, which they want to keep quiet about until the election:
- Defense budgets must be raised to 2% of GDP.
- PESCO members must participate in at least one PESCO "project" (i.e. Eurodrone, fighter jet, etc) and participate in the European Defence Agency
- Must participate in EU battlegroups
- Must commit to actually deploying troops in operations outside the EU
- Must commit to more financial/budget coordination, such as through the annual defense review and European Defense Fund
How Will All of this Be Governed?
"The ideal would be to have PESCO projects financed by the European Defence Fund." - Federica Mogherini, EU High Representative (Speech to Parliament)Furthermore, a "senior EU official" stated that the new European Defence Fund (EDF), will be patterned after the EU's permanent bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM).
The fund will operate in a similar way to the European Stability Mechanism — the eurozone’s permanent bailout fund — the official said. (Politico)
Similar to the Bailout Fund
If we want insight into how the future EDF will be run, we must look no further than the EU's permanent bailout fund, the ESM.
image credit: http://www.tornosnews.gr/en/greek-news/economy/23666-european-stability-mechanism-official-greece-will-need-money-in-july.html
When someone like Greece gets a bailout loan, it comes from this fund. When it was launched it had available up to €500 billion ($666 billion).
However, in order to possibly bailout someone as big as Spain or Italy, it may be able to provide up to 2 trillion euros available. (citation: http://www.eurallfree.org/?q=node/666).
If a country is about to default and they need a bailout to save it, the board of governors of the ESM vote unanimously to provide funds. It is chaired by the Eurogroup President, Jeroen Dijsselbloem. The Board of Governors meets annually.
Image from ESM Board of Governors Meeting Held
Remember, 666 is the number of the Antichrist. But it is the false prophet, not the beast, that implements the money system associated with that number.
Criticisms of the Bailout Fund
Finally, the whole ESM concept is morally wrong in my opinion. One of the reasons Greece, and Spain, etc. are in so much debt has to do with the fact the eurozone is not an "optimal currency area." When economic crisis hits, struggling countries are unable to devalue the currency to encourage exports and tourism. This is in contrast with the U.S. which is an optimal currency area, because labor is more mobile due to the same language. The U.S. also does "fiscal transfers" to poorer areas every year, to even out the economy over the whole place.
The EU doesn't do that. Instead of financial transfers no one thinks about, they are politically charged bailout loans. Unlike the U.S. the state has to repay the loan. But in order for the problem country, such as Greece, to get the loan money, they have to agree to do all kinds of very intense financial belt-tightening, even when unemployment is really high. Only then do they get the money. This ends up being a very imperial arrangement, where faraway officials determine what the budget of the problem country will look like. (See Vox Article)
"Defense Group" President/EDF Chairman?
So the fact that this European Defence Fund is going to look like the ESM just kind of makes it more ominous. If the EDF really does end up looking similar to the ESM, a future president of the EDF would have a lot of political weight. If it follows the EMU model, this same person could chair the "defense group" of PESCO's members, similar to how the Eurogroup President is also the ESM President.
If I understand correctly the same representatives who sit in the Eurogroup also sit in the ESM board of governors. Since the European Defense Fund will ideally be used to finance PESCO projects, it makes sense that the same representatives sit on the EDF Board as the future "Defense Group." It would make sense to make the chairperson of the EDF also over the Defense Group, like the Eurogroup does.
Which is why the fact that the EDF has four 666 connections very interesting, in light of how that number has worked in the past with regards to the leading Antichrist candidate, Javier Solana. (If you don't know about the very specific prophecies Solana has fulfilled apart from 666 stuff, check out this link).
But who wants to lead this?
Spain seems to be very interested in managing the European Defense Fund. B2 Le Club, quotes the Spanish Prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, below:
For the Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy , the historical fact is more " the launch of the European Defense Fund. A great advance. We are waiting for negotiations with the European Commission to see how these funds will be managed. This will help the domestic industry, especially SMEs . "" Europe of defense is one of the areas where we can move forward with great determination in the EU. " As for the PESCO, the launch " within a reasonable time " will " give the European Union the capacity to respond to challenges. "
The leader of the Spanish Popular Party also sang a little self-celebratory air. "Spain is one of the main instigators of this policy which seeks to give the EU a major strategic autonomy . He also pointed out that Madrid was " currently the first contributor " of CSDP missions. As for the battlegroups , which Spain has been contributing to for 10 years, we believe it is a useful instrument for resolving crises .Even today in an interview Solana stated that Spain has lost weight in the world.
On Twitter, a member of European Parliament stated that, in wake of the 1st anniversary of the Nice attacks in France, the EU needs police, intelligence, and defense to fight Jihad. He goes on to say that "Spain must lead that unit." Javier Solana retweeted it, which could be very telling.
I wonder what person in Spain is most qualified to "lead that unit?" I wonder who could be nominated?? Spain is very underrepresented in the top jobs. So if a post for leadership of the new EDF comes up, Spain could potentially be allowed to put forward a nominee.
All the suspense can drive one crazy, as we see so many things happening, but the Antichrist candidate has not quite returned to power. Yet it seems so close. May God overflow wisdom to us, keeping us from any false beliefs about the future, and guiding us to the truth.
May the true God, Jesus Christ, return quickly. No matter what, we have a very bright future with Jesus. Forever and ever.