The Revived Roman Empire Foreseen by Daniel the Prophet
Nebuchadnezzar's Dream Image
The contrast of this beast to the others is further seen in Nebuchadnezzar's dream image (Daniel 2: 31-41), which symbolizes the four kingdoms and relates their strength to metals. The golden head of the image is Babylon. Its silver arms and chest are the Medes and Persians. Its bronze thighs represent the Greek empire, and its legs and feet are of iron, but the toes have clay mingled in with the iron. According to Scripture, the fourth beast is made of iron because iron "breaks in pieces and shatters all things." While gold, silver and bronze each possess some esthetic value and pliability, iron's sole value is its strength. This entity does not merely rule and have dominion; it crushes and breaks in pieces all of the other kingdoms, and its purpose is that of a destroyer and crusher rather than a conqueror which is possible using modern weaponry.
The fourth beast encompasses the same area as the ancient Roman Empire. It rises from the midst of the seas, specifically the Mediterranean (Rev. 13:1). When Daniel foretold Jerusalem's destruction in A.D. 70, he simultaneously prophesied that the coming prince would come from the area of the Roman Empire. Daniel 9:26 states: "The people of the prince that shall come, shall destroy the city and the sanctuary." The Romans under Titus in A.D. 70 destroyed Jerusalem.
The Antichrist holds his political position in re-empowered Europe. The final world empire represents a second phase in the Old Roman Empire's history. According to Daniel 7:24, the fourth kingdom never passes out of existence, but rather continues in some form until its final condition emerges. The Scriptures view the Roman Empire as continually developing until the second coming of Christ. The final world power will possess similarities to the Old Roman Empire. Dwight Pentecost summarizes the purpose of its revival by concluding: "As the Roman Empire had been the agency through which Satan attacked Christ at His first advent, that empire in its final form will be the agency through which Satan works against the Messiah at His second advent."
For more from Erika Grey on Bible Prophecy, the forecasts of Daniel and the Antichrist see: