The Image of the Beast in Dan. 3

What will be the Image of the Beast? What does scripture tell us? In Daniel 3, Nebuchadnezzar built an image of gold. Is this a biblical picture of the coming image?

In Daniel Chapter 2, we find the story of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream of a huge metal statue. We discussed that dream and what it means in numerous previous posts. God helped Daniel interpret the dream. He informed Nebuchadnezzar that Babylon was the head of gold of the statue and that other Kingdoms, inferior to Babylon, represented by other inferior metals, would assume pre-eminence after Babylon fell. Nebuchadnezzar obviously didn’t like what God revealed to him in his dream. He didn’t want Babylon’s kingdom to end, and he made his own statue in defiance of God’s revealed Word.  Nebuchadnezzar’s statue was all gold (the metal representing Babylon) rather than multiple metals. He was in essence defiantly saying to God, you may have a statue of different metals and think other kingdoms will replace Babylon, but my statue is only gold—Babylon will last forever. In Dan. 3 we learn more about this statue constructed by Nebuchadnezzar:

Nebuchadnezzar the king made an image of gold, the height of which was sixty cubits and its width six cubits; he set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon. (Dan 3:1 NASB, emphasis mine)

This statue definitely is a foreshadow of the Abomination.  First, it is an image of the Beast. We know that ancient Babylon was the first of four beasts that Daniel prophesied.  In Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, gold was the color of the Babylonian portion of the statue which was associated with the first beast, so an image of gold was an image of the first beast. We know from Rev. 13:14 that the final Abomination will be an image of the fourth beast. From the description of the statue which Nebuchadnezzar built, we also see the numbers 60 and 6 in the above passage in association with his statue. The number of the final Beast Empire will be 600, 60, and 6 (the infamous “666”). God’s Word is telling us Nebuchadnezzar’s image is like the final one that is to come, but it is not evil to the same extreme as the final version, as the statue which Nebuchadnezzar built lacks the 600.

I found the dimensions of this statue unusual as well. Notice it is ten times higher (60 cubits) as it is wide (6 cubits).  Traditional statues are more likely two or three times higher than they are wide. The dimension of ten times greater height made this statue very tall and thin; not a traditional statue at all.  In fact, it has been shown that this “statue” was the same size ratio as the Washington Monument. It was either an obelisk, minaret, or tower, not the traditional pictures we see of it. We will return to this concept just a bit later.

In Dan. 3, there are several other allusions to the 70th Week as well as the 666 allusion. The herald of the king makes reference to “peoples, nations and languages”:

Then the herald loudly proclaimed: “To you the command is given, O peoples, nations and men of every language,  . . . you are to fall down and worship the golden image that Nebuchadnezzar the king has set up.” (Dan. 3:4-5)

This is a reference to the multiple uses of “people, tribes, nations and languages” found in Revelation.

The reference to Nebuchadnezzar heating the furnace seven times hotter than usual is also a oblique reference to the 7th year of the 70th Week. Notice how the “remnant of the Hebrews” were kept safe from the fire. As you may know from the many articles on this website, the Day of the Lord will take place at the very beginning of the 7th year of the 70th Week. On that day (after the Great Tribulation), the Church will be raptured. On that exact same day, fiery judgment will fall from heaven in the form of the First Trumpet Judgment. The remnant of the Jews who are sealed in Rev. 7:1-8 will not be raptured at that time with the Church. They will endure the fiery judgment on earth but will be protected through it as this Old Testament picture shows!

It is also a picture of how Jesus will be with his Church during the 70th Week of Daniel. In the midst of the fire with Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego appears a Theophany (an Old Testament appearance of Jesus).

Look! I see four men loosed and walking about in the midst of the fire without harm, and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods!” (Dan. 3:25)

This reminds of how Jesus will walk in the midst of the Church that endures the Great Tribulation (in Rev. the Church is symbolized by the seven golden lamp-stands).

The Persecution Begins

After the image was set up, Nebuchadnezzar commanded everyone to bow to the image. In the Septuagint Old Testament, the Greek word for bow down is PROSKUNEO which is the identical Greek word translated in Revelation as “worship” in the following passage about the Abomination of Desolation:

And it was given to him to give breath to the image of the beast, so that the image of the beast would even speak and cause as many as do not worship (PROSKUNEO) the image of the beast to be killed.  (Rev. 13:15 NASB, clarification and emphasis mine)

This Greek word PROSKUNEO literally means “to kiss the ground in reverence to something greater.” This is a perfect picture of how Muslims bow to Mecca to worship Allah (Satan). We also see in Dan. 3 that Nebuchadnezzar ordered a call to worship to be played by an orchestra of instruments. It was upon that signal that the bowing was to take place. This is also a perfect picture of the Muslim “call to prayer,” that plays from their minarets prior to each of these prayer sessions.

We can now see how the shape of Nebuchadnezzar’s golden statue mimics a Muslim minaret. This explains how an image set up in Jerusalem can be worshiped all over the world. Muslims are currently bowing in the direction (the Qibla) of the Kaaba that holds the Black Stone in Mecca.   Muslims face the Kaaba during prayers, but claim they do not worship the Kaaba. Muslims claim they worship and bow to Allah. The Muslim minarets play the call to worship that guides the individual worshipers to bow towards the direction (Qibla) of the Kaaba in Mecca.

Is this a picture of what will occur during the Great Tribulation? Will minarets be set up world-wide and at the signal of the call to prayer, will all will be forced to bow in the Qibla of Jerusalem. Will Islamists “cause as many as do not worship (PROSKUNEO) the image of the beast to be killed. ”

The following YouTube video from the History Channel is absolutely awesome. I highly recommend you watch it:

We can learn a lot about the coming persecution from this video.  First notice the Statue is probably only a 3:1 ration not the 10:1 ratio scripture calls for, but other than that it is pretty accurate.  I was very impressed by the scene on the plain of Dura in which thousands bowed down; all but the three Hebrews. They stood and it was very obvious. When the minarets play during the Great Tribulation, there will be no where to hide. It will be very obvious who will not bow.

Second, notice they are the only ones not bowing. Many youth from the royal family of Israel were taken into the court of Nebuchadnezzar so there were likely many other Hebrews in that crowd. They bowed and committed apostasy.

Third, the Hebrews committed themselves to God in order to stand which reminds me of Ephesians:

Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. (Eph. 6:13)

Also notice how they prayed the Psalms throughout their ordeal? God’s Word is our strong “tower” not the minaret.

The scene only shows three men standing, but in the future there will be many who will want to resist, If you and I stand, others may gain the strength to stand with us. Encouraging the faith of others by standing up to persecution is what is meant by this verse from Jesus’s Letter to Sardis (the Church that endures the Great Tribulation):

Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God.  So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. (Rev. 3:2-3)

Although those that endure the 70th Week will have gone through a lot by the time the Great Tribulation begins, Jesus tells us “your deeds are not completed,” there is one more act or courage to do: to stand. And in so doing, we will strengthen the things that were about to die (our own souls and that of other possibly weaker Christians who are about to give in).  As we have mentioned many times on this website: Testimony of the saints is one of the main purposes of the Great Tribulation and why God permits it.

The Image of the Beast: The Black Stone

In my previous book, Are We Ready For Jesus?,  I presented the case that it is likely that the Abomination itself will be the Muslim’s Kaaba’s Black Stone, possibly moved by the Antichrist to Jerusalem and set up on the Temple of God, and it will be the object of worldwide worship. An older and  shortened version of that explanation can be found here at HANUKKAH AND THE ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION. You can order Are We Ready For Jesus AT THIS WEBSITE.

ReadyforJesuscover

 

33 thoughts on “The Image of the Beast in Dan. 3”

  1. Daniel was elevated in status by Nebuchadnezzer for his ability to interpret his dreams. He was given control over all of Babylon. The king did this after prostrating himself at the feet of Daniel. Imagine the great King kneeling before a subject! This was prior to the first inaugural worship command. Daniel wrote that all of the ruling figures were summoned to the unveiling of the statue. Daniel himself was considered by the King as a more powerful ruler over all of them. Daniel was always at the King’s side. The King didn’t expect Daniel to bow to the statue. After the furnace miracle, the King declared Daniels’ God to be like no other….the greatest God. The worship of the statue ceased nearly the same day. Shadrach etc. went back to living and working for Daniel, under the King, as before the furnace miracle. Daniel appointed the three to prominent positions within the government before the furnace. Keep in mind that God is in charge of this entire event. He would not put Daniel in a position to sin against him.

    This entire incident could be a foreshadowing of the AC’s abomination demanding worship, and the Two Witnesses being as defiant as Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego during Daniel’s 70th week. But of course the outcome is different.

    IMO the work of the Two Witnesses cannot be understated. Their appearance, their work, preaching the Gospel to the world for 3.5 years. They will be the sole reason why the AC cannot be King of the earth and causes him enormous frustration and agony. The two lampstands and olive trees stand before the God of the earth. Satan will not be allowed to be god of the earth.

      1. As Christians, understanding the truth is the most important. The bible clearly says, ‘As the truth is in Jesus’ (Ephesians 4:21).
        Make your case scripturally and I can likewise offer the same.
        Sadly, if you go into the Bible with preconceived beliefs and are not willing to concede the truth, you don’t come out a changed person.

        1. I don’t have any preconceived beliefs because I am a fairly new christian and study on my own!! I am just trying to learn what the truth is!! Sadly from what I have learned so far there are so many different viewpoints it is really hard to find out what the truth really is!!

          1. there are a lot of things I struggle to understand as well Chris. The Bible tells us we see through a glass darkly. However there are some rock solid aspects that you can be reasonably sure of even if others disagree. Focus on those to start with and move out from there. I now think the timing of the Rapture can be determined with a fair degree of certainty even if 99.9% of the church doesn’t see it that way yet. I think the religious/ethnic identity of the Antichrist can as well (again, even if 95% of the church doesn’t agree yet).

            Part of what I believe makes Jesus smile is when we dig into the scriptures to find these things out.

  2. One thing I have never understood about the story of Daniel is that, why wasn’t he thrown into the fire, unless he did bow down to the idol !!

    My other question is whether Apostasy will be a worldwide phenomenon or regional (specific to Middle East and may be parts of Europe and Africa, as ISIS claims currently). If worldwide how will the whole world be forced to worship the stone?

    1. In regard to Daniel, either he was not present or exempt as the video portrays OR he did bow. Scripture isn’t clear. However, because he is given a very special status in Ezek. 14 (with Noah and Job), I have to think the former is the reason.

      We have no idea whether the Apostasy will be world-wide or restricted. I have to imagine it is somewhat restricted because the AC doesn’t control the whole earth.

    2. Christopher.

      The so called Palestinians are mostly Arabs and Egyptians. You can trace their origins from many of their family names back to Syria, Iraq etc. Around half of those living in Gaza are Egyptian. That included the mother of Yasser Arafat. He was borne in Egypt and his father was also an Egyptian.

      The name Palestinian is derived from the name given to the land of Judea and Samaria by the Roman emperor Hadrian after he ethnically cleansed it of most of its JEWISH inhabitants in AD 135. But only most, not all of them! So the true owners of the land never totally lost possession of it. And their descendants have the God given right to rule over all the land he gave them no matter what you may believe regarding the repatriation of the diaspora.

      Those who since only the 1960’s have called themselves Palestinians, are in fact mostly occupiers who arrived there as a result of Islamic colonialism, and immigrants who came in search of work on the Zionist project.

      It is their hatred and violence against Israel that you are supporting in direct disobedience to God’s command. Gen 12:3 “And I will bless them that bless you, and curse him that curses you: and in you shall all families of the earth be blessed.”

      1. Phil, the verse you cited in no way directs us to support the state of Israel. The point that you and Nelson don’t seem to understand is that their was a study by geneticist (National Geographic Genome Project) that definitively proves the Palestinians are Semites and the Ashkenazi Jews in Israel are not Semites. Christianity was practiced by 80% of the Palestinian population until the people claiming to be Israel moved into the land. Now it is less than 10%.
        Israel is a Jewish state. It means you have to practice Judaism or be related to someone who practices Judaism. Christianity and Judaism are directly opposed to one another. Just ask a Jewish person what the Talmud teaches about Jesus.
        There are many Jews who are opposed to the state of Israel as well. Show me one place in Scripture God tells them to once again go and rebuild the Temple and reoccupy the land. These Jews teach that they are to remain in exile until the appearance of Messiah.
        Jesus said, Behold I leave your house to you desolate. After rejecting the Savior of the world the Jews were scattered and their temple destroyed.
        Jesus said, I know those who say they are Jews and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. Revelation 2:9
        As a Christian you should pray very hard on wether to support the state of Israel/ a Jewish state. If you know anything about Judaism, you know they await a Messiah. Jesus said, I come in my father’s name and you receive me not, but if another comes in his own name him you will receive. Could that mean they will accept the anti-christ?
        Do your homework on this issue. As Christians we tend to be brainwashed that we must support Israel, but the more you know the Word of God you see the truth that Israel opposes God Almighty.

          1. Nelson,
            Please state your position. As Christians we should try to edify one another with respect to the word of truth. This is a very important subject. I will state my case and I welcome a different point of view so that using scripture with scripture we can arrive at what God would have us to do. Perhaps you could create a new thread on this very subject.

        1. Christopher, I am not an expert on this topic, but I encourage you to do a study about all of the 12 tribes!! Judah represents two tribes and the other 10 tribes are referred to as the House of Israel in the Bible. They are referred to differently in the Bible. The tribes of Judah were captured by babylon. The Assyrians captured the other 10 tribes (The house of Israel) In Matthew 15 Jesus makes an astonishing statement. Vs. 24 “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the House of Israel”.

          1. Galatians 3:28-29, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

            Ask a Jewish person what tribe he or she is from today. They can’t tell you.

            Christians need to spread the gospel to all nations. It is the Great commission.

            Jews desperately need to hear the gospel but Christians have been taught, No, they are the chosen people: they have a different covenant with God.
            Jews are attempting to rebuild their kingdom to its former glory without acknowledging the true Messiah.
            Unless the Lord build the house, the builders labor in vain- Psalm 127:1

            Christians are unwittingly sponsoring rebellion to God by supporting the state of Israel.

            After Jesus prophecies the utter destruction of their temple and removed them from the land, where is the commission to rebuild as he told them through the prophets of former times.

        2. Christopher

          I have read of genetic studies that prove the opposite to what you prefer. but then it is always about what we prefer isn’t it!

          The fact that Arabs are Semitic proves only what we all know anyway. That both Arabs and Israelites descend from Abraham.

          A fact that can’t be disputed is that the land was inherited by Jacob whom God named Israel, not the descendants of Ishmael as those Arabs would have us believe. Not that the Israeli government in any way discriminates against none Jews, who occupy many positions of high status in Israeli society. A fact that sticks in the craw of those who, like yourself would have us believe Israel to be an Apartheid state.

          What you infer by your statistics regarding Palestinian Christians is hypocritical propaganda. You know as well as I that the drop in Christian population is due to Islamic persecution, just as it is in all Middle Eastern countries.

          You can quote as many scriptures as you like that you think favour your argument. But try dealing with the scriptures that clearly indicate Israel will be regathered as a nation and their cities rebuilt before the Messiah returns.

          There can be no Tribulation without Israel being back home in Jerusalem.

          1. Phil,
            Thank you for your reply. If you truly strive to understand scriptures you will have to let go of your bias for Israel. I once completely supported Israel but studying scripture has completely changed my viewpoint.
            God tell us that he is going to destroy Jerusalem in Revelation (not Mecca, not Rome). As Christians we look for the new Jerusalem that will come down from heaven.
            The Devil has deceived the entire world that the people pushing out the Palestinians are the Israelites from the old testament. The DNA evidence says that the so called Jews are actually a Turkic people known as the Khazars. Joel Richardson was right when he believes it will be a Turkish people. The invasion of Ezekiel 38-39 is happening in front of our eyes but we Christians think it is Israel returning to the promised land. The Palestinians are actually the true Israelites and the Turkish Khazars pretending to be the Jews are taking away the land.
            Now the next event to happen is what most will call ‘ Jacobs Trouble’. They will call this the invasion of Gog and Magog, when in fact it is God judging and destroying the fake state of Israel because the Palestinians were his people the whole time. Sounds crazy but so did Jesus saying that John the Baptist was actually Elijah returned. Sounds crazy but so was Jesus saying ‘ unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood you will not enter the kingdom of God’.
            Judaism is going to conquer Christianity because the whole time Christians thought the enemy was Islam.
            The more America stands with Israel the more corrupt our society will become. Gay marriage, Godless schools and courts, more immigration, more crime and racial division, more poverty and debt.
            Christians have been courting the synagogue of Satan the whole time.
            My only hope is that Christians will wake up to the truth.
            God bless you Phil.
            Galatians 4:16

          2. This will be the last comment that is published on this topic. Christopher, I have given you ample opportunity to voice your opinion. I thoroughly disagree with you. First of all, Jews in Israel have come the world over to repopulate Israel, their genetics are mixed. Hitler and Satan obviously thought they were Jewish enough to kill millions during WWII. Second, genetics are meaningless anyway. God has always accepted the stranger and the foreigner into the nation of Israel. He is a God of grafting in. You and I have been grafted in as per Romans 11. Third, if you read my book “Are We Ready For Jesus,” you will see the evidence that prior to the Jewish repopulation of Israel, the area was a wasteland and the few people living there were Syrians. No one desired the land until the Israelites rebuilt it. THERE ARE NO PALESTINIAN PEOPLE! Jordan was the nation created for the Arab Syrians living in Israel in 1948. They have a homeland, it’s Jordan. This nonsense theory that you have bought into is based on an Islamic lie designed to discredit Israel from a historic right to the land.

            Now as far as the Israeli people, there is only a small remnant of righteous among them who will repent upon the second coming and mourn when they recognize who Jesus is. Israel is not a righteous nation and the majority of their people are not righteous. They will rebuild the temple and commit blasphemous sacrifices rather than except Jesus. God however, has a remnant that he has preserved among them and it is that remnant that we support as Christians.

            Judaism is not going to conquer Christianity. The Bible is clear it is the Jews who are persecuted during the 70th Week, not the other way around.

  3. That was an amazing video!! There are so many that believe we will not face this. I have spent the day reading and watching some videos about the 12 tribes of Israel. Have you seen Idenitey Crisis by Passion for truth ministries, I really learned a lot from watching that. He also believes that the Kabba stone will be what we will be told to bow down to. Passion for truth, did a great video on youtube about the history of that stone. Worth watching. It is on my facebook page.

      1. Nelson,
        What if the Jews in Israel are not the real Jews and what if the real Jews are actually the Palestinians?
        Revelation 2:9- I know those who say they are Jews and are not but are the synagogue of Satan.

        1. Christopher, I thought I had heard everything. Obviously I had not! The “real” Jews are the remnant, but there will be many, many apostate Jews in the end times.

          1. The blood line of Jesus our Messiah included Rahab from Jericho and Ruth from Moab. I don’t buy need for pure blood-lines of various people groups. Are all of the current Jews in Israel direct descendants of those carried into exile by the Romans? Of course not. Are some of them? Yes, of course.

          2. Nelson,
            I am not sure you understand the implications of the results of the study. Imagine if the Chinese people who have converted to Islam moved to Saudi Arabia and said we are the sons of Ishmael, we are the true Arabs. We wouldnt take them seriously. The same is true of these khazars. They are not related to Abraham. The Palestinians are Semites. They were there before these false Jews who only converted to judaism. There is no Jewish race only a Jewish religion and culture. The same is true of being an American.
            Why then do Christians support a religion and culture that opposes our Lord and Savior?
            The so called Ashkenazi Jews are not from the holy land.
            Support the persecution of the true chosen people ( the Palestinians) at your own peril.
            God will destroy Jerusalem.

  4. Nelson, You’re making a common mistake here when you say “He informed Nebuchadnezzar that Babylon was the head of gold of the statue and that other Kingdoms, inferior to Babylon, represented by other inferior metals, would assume pre-eminence after Babylon fell.”

    The kingdoms that arose after Babylon were superior not inferior to it. The prophecy was not about kingdoms. It was about authority. Nebuchadnezzar was above the law (a man of lawlessness) The kings of the Medo-Persian empire were governed by and unable to change laws they or their predecessors had made. The Greeks operated a form of elitist democracy.

    The Antichrist will rule a kingdom from the same position as Nebuchadnezzar, above the law. Bookends!

    1. You all have heard of UFO’s?. The phenomina is getting a little hard to ignore the past few years.
      Dont put your mind completely on just one end time theory. . . .yet.
      Dont be surprise if a “alien” element enters the scene as we draw clocer to the end.
      I belief much of the false signs and wonders will be performed by demons masquarading as aliens to deceive the world.

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