v.9-10 If anyone has an ear, let him hear. He who leads into captivity shall go into captivity; he who kills with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.
These will be days of horrendous persecution for the believer. And though God makes no promise of immunity from either death or from any other terror, He does encourage the believer to remain patient inside the assurance that their suffering will not be in vain. God’s purposes are at work. Those who lead into captivity will go into captivity, and those who kill will be killed. In the end, following their judgment, they will become captives of the eternal fires of damnation, sentenced to an eternal death.
v.11-14 Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon. And he exercises all the authority of the first beast in his presence, and causes the earth and those who dwell in it to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceives those who dwell on the earth by those signs which he was granted to do in the sight of the beast, telling those who dwell on the earth to make an image to the beast who was wounded by the sword and lived.
We know that the identity of this second beast is the false prophet because it’s stated so later (Rev.19:20). He too will arise out of the earth as the same-type dangerous-beast as the Antichrist, but with a dramatically different appearance.
Upon his head are not the horns of nations but “two horns like a lamb.” This is taken to mean that he will appear Christ-like, or gentle, serene, and deeply spiritual. He will exercise all the authority of Antichrist but for a profoundly different purpose: Antichrist is intended to rule the world as a god; the false prophet is intended to inspire the world to worship him as a god.
His influence will come from an ability to perform great signs. “So that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men.” Moreover, his sphere of influence will help Antichrist. Keep in mind that the Antichrist is a politician from Europe whose oratory and military skills might have minimal positive affect on his popularity to a religious people in a third world country, and in fact could alienate it.
The false prophet will exalt the Antichrist in the eyes of the world as a god. And with great signs and wonders cause the unbelieving religious-minded and the whole world to believe the lie, and then to erect an image to Antichrist as a form of worship and adoration.
“The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie…” (2Thess.2:9-11)