Image of a King

At the Tower of London is a wax figure of King George V. It’s the same height as the real king and is dressed in the same attire. Up close, even through its glass case, one half expects it to speak. As Sailor George (or "Grandpa England" as our current Queen called him when she was a child) died back in 1936, I know this can’t be him and that it will never speak.

In Revelation 13, we read (emphasis mine):

Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns like a lamb and spoke like a dragon. 12 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. 13 He performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. 14 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. 15 He was granted power to give breath to the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak and cause as many as would not worship the image of the beast to be killed. 16 He causes all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their foreheads, 17 and that no one may buy or sell except one who has the mark or the name of the beast, or the number of his name 

I acknowledge that each man and his dog has a different interpretation of this passage, while others refuse to offer comment on it at all. So without stepping too far into the lands of conjecture, let me offer summary:

-A leader will encourage the religious devotion to another leader who will be killed, but somehow recovers;

-He will require people to make an image of this leader, which will somehow have the ability to communicate 

Within the ever-evolving world of artificial intelligence and computer-generated virtual reality, one can see our developing the technology by which Revelation’s strange foretelling might come to pass. The Tower’s model of King George did not fool me, but what if it emerged from its case and looked me up and down? What if it spoke, claiming to be George Windsor? What if it had a royal accent, shared memories about the Great War and the various Prime Ministers with whom he dealt? Perhaps I’d believe he had indeed come back from the dead. Might the final deception will be of some great world leader resurrected, who again speaks and moves?

Rest assured, the only returnee from the dead whose voice we should heed is Christ Jesus. Of Him we seek no images or visions, save what He has spoken in His word; when we see Him, it really be Him, not some image or representation. I do not know how Revelation 13 will be fulfilled, but I do look forward to that day when, at Jesus’ return, we believers shall

‘...see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads.’

Rev. 22:4