There are some issues with the interpretation of kingdoms, when it clearly says "kings." Not to mention that the Roman empire is long gone by any definition of an empire.
17 ‘Those great beasts, which are four, are four kings
The first three remain alive while the fourth beast is being slain.
12 As for the rest of the beasts, they had their dominion taken away, yet their lives were prolonged for a season and a time.
Have you ever noticed this? Compare to Revelation.
Dan 7:3 And four great beasts came up from the sea
Dan 7:17 ‘Those great beasts, which are four, are four kings which arise out of the earth.
Rev 13:1 And I saw a beast rising up out of the sea
Rev 13:11 Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth
The definition of arising from the sea is arising OUT OF the earth, not arising ON the earth. This beast comes out of the abyss as we are told in Revelation. The book of Enoch tells us that a beast is parted/separated (depending on translation) in the day of judgment. The first beast in Rev 13 gets parted into the four in Daniel 7. This probably doesn't make much sense, but it could with further study. It gets far more interesting, but I'll leave it there for now.
Imo, none of the beasts in Revelation are the AC. The AC is destroyed by Jesus' coming to gather the elect at the 7th Trumpet. Thus shortening the days of tribulation for the elect's sake. Then Jesus is caught up in Rev 12 to cast out satan. Yes, the entire 1260 days of satan and the beasts come after Jesus has returned to gather the elect. I know right now this seems impossible. That is exactly what the chronological reading of Revelation reveals. Also, it confirms many of the OT passages such as these:I will never treat my brother in Christ with such contempt! No matter how much we may disagree our goals are the same, and the Spirit is the same. We will eventually end up in the same place, whether here or in the future.
I'm a pretty established Postribber, having focused on this issue for several decades. I've studied just about everything that can be studied about it, although I'm sure there's always more to be considered. I have not read some important materials on the subject, but I know the arguments pretty well.
Whether or not the Beast is the Antichrist itself creates more questions: there are 2 beasts--not just 1--which 1 is *not* the Antichrist? Is the 1st or the 2nd Beast the Antichrist, while the other is not? Is neither Beast the Antichrist?
I prefer to utilize historical scholars in all of my views, with the exception of interpretations involving current events. Everybody interprets prophecy in their own times. For example, a great Bible Scholar of 500 years ago could not have possibly known about what happened to Israel in 1947-48.
Although many Bible Scholars think either of the 2 Beasts as the Antichrist I see the 1st Beast as the Antichrist. But he also appears to be an Empire. So they are one or both, in my view--probably both. But I'm always open to more information. I'm sure I have a number of places where I need to be corrected or refined. Thanks Tony!
Daniel 12:1 “At that time Michael shall stand up, The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; And there shall be a time of trouble, Such as never was since there was a nation,
Even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, Every one who is found written in the book.
Deliverance for "your people," the Jews, comes at the time when there shall be a time of trouble such as never before. That is what it says.
Isaiah 16:1 Send the LAMB to the ruler of the land, From Sela to the wilderness, To the mount of the daughter of Zion. 2 For it shall be as a wandering bird thrown out of the nest; So shall be the daughters of Moab at the fords of the Arnon. 3 “Take counsel, execute judgment; Make your shadow like the night in the middle of the day; Hide the outcasts, Do not betray him who escapes. 4 Let My outcasts dwell with you, O Moab; Be a shelter to them from the face of the spoiler. For the extortioner is at an end, Devastation ceases, The oppressors are consumed out of the land.
The extortioner is at an end. Moab is the wilderness in Rev 12 where the elect are sheltered from the spoiler, the beast. Notice Moab is east of Jerusalem. The exact direction they will flee when Jesus return to the Mount of Olives.
Zechariah 14:3 Then the Lord will go forth And fight against those nations, As He fights in the day of battle. 4 And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, Which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, From east to west, Making a very large valley; Half of the mountain shall move toward the north And half of it toward the south. 5 Then you shall flee through My mountain valley, For the mountain valley shall reach to Azal. Yes, you shall flee
Since I know how difficult it is to believe satan and the beast come after Jesus return to gather the elect, I ask a few questions.
When Jesus, the King of Kings, Lord of Lords, returns in great glory, why in the world do the people in Jerusalem need to flee?
Zechariah 2:5 For I,’ says the Lord, ‘will be a wall of fire all around her, and I will be the glory in her midst.’”
Why does Jesus need to be a wall of fire around his people after He has returned?
I know how difficult this is to accept. Anyway, at least you can say you heard once.
Isaiah 26:Come, my people, enter your chambers, And shut your doors behind you; Hide yourself, as it were, for a little moment, Until the indignation is past. 21 For behold, the Lord comes out of His place To punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity...27:1 In that day the Lord with His severe sword, great and strong, Will punish Leviathan the fleeing serpent, Leviathan that twisted serpent; And He will slay the reptile that is in the sea.
Satan, all his angels, and all the demons from the abyss, are also "inhabitants of the earth" by this point. Armageddon will the great battle of God Almighty indeed. God knows what He is doing and it is awesome!