594. Verse 11. And I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, signifies the clergy in the churches of the Reformed who are in the doctrine and faith of the dragon concerning God and salvation. What the faith of the dragon is and its quality, may be seen above (n. 537). That it is the laity that are meant by "the beast which came up out of the sea," and the clergy by "the beast which came up out of the earth," because by "the sea" is signified the external of the church, and by "the earth" its internal (n. 398, 567); and the laity are in the externals of the doctrine of the church, and the clergy are in its internals. That the clergy are now described, appears from all the particulars which follow, when understood in the spiritual sense; and manifestly from this, that this beast is also called "the false prophet" (Rev. 16:13; 19:20; 20:10); and especially from the following passage:
And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that did signs before him, by which he seduced them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that adored his image (Rev. 19:20).
That this beast did signs before the other, by which he seduced them, is said in this chapter in these words:
And he doeth great signs, and he seduceth them that dwell on the earth, on account of the signs which it was given him to do before the beast, saying to them to make an image to the beast, and adore it (Rev. 13:13-15).