Scripture:

Psalm 48:1-3, 14 “Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised in the city of our God! His holy mountain, beautiful in elevation, is the joy of all the earth, Mount Zion, in the far north, the city of the great King. Within her citadels God has made himself known as a fortress... that this is God, our God forever and ever. He will guide us forever.”

Revelation 13:1, 6-8, 13-14 “And I saw a beast rising out of the sea, with ten horns and seven heads, with ten diadems on its horns and blasphemous names on its heads... It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming his name and his dwelling, that is, those who dwell in heaven. Also it was allowed to make war on the saints and to conquer them. And authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, and all who dwell on earth will worship it, everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain... It performs great signs, even making fire come down from heaven to earth in front of people, and by the signs that it is allowed to work in the presence of the beast it deceives those who dwell on earth, telling them to make an image for the beast that was wounded by the sword and yet lived.”

 

Observations:

Immediately after reading both chapters, I came to an obvious understanding that this was a comparison between God and the devil. In Psalms, I believe it's all about praise be to the Lord, my soul to take. We worship our mighty God, he will always love and take care of us. Then in Revelations, the beast is a version of Satan that is meant to run the land in a "dictatorship" kind of way. The beast strikes fear into all. Not the fear we feel towards God, but more of a terror, scared for our lives kind of ordeal. The beast has no mercy, and to be able to purchase or sell, one must be marked by the mark of the beast the name or the number: 666. In reading both sections back and forth, I see an obvious pleasure in going on the side of the Lord, where He loves all, versus the side of the beast, who forces all to live by a standard. However, the beast can also deceive those who dwell on earth, make them believe that God is the enemy. In the Bible I have read that Satan once tried to deceive God's only son Jesus into believing that earth could be his kingdom, if he followed Satan. Jesus of course turned him down, but Jesus was perfect. We as humans are far from perfect. We live in breath in Satan's favorite thing: Sin, leaving us extremely vulnerable to being pushed away from the lord and led down Satan's deceivingly better path into nothingness. 

 

Application:

I apply this to my life in a major way. I understand that I will sin and that is a part of me, but I also understand that I need to live in spite of sin and not let it control me or find pleasure in it in any way, shape, or form. Satan is always gonna be tapping on my shoulder, whispering the pleasures of sin over and over again. Making sure the pleasures of the flesh are always trying to turn me down and unending path that might seem sweet on earth, but at the end will lead to an eternal torment not worth any pleasure felt on earth. I will always be looked down upon by those who carelessly live in their own appeasing actions and feelings. And the road may be narrow and the gate even narrower, but once I am through the gate, I will live an eternal life in a place indefinitely more pleasurable than anything on earth.
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