The Woman & The Beast
Revelation chapter 17 is possibly one of the most important chapters in the Bible in regard to our understanding of history; and also explains why there are so many false religions in the world. Sadly this does not get taught and is replaced by misinformation, deliberate deceit and outright lies. However, anyone interested in the truth does not have to dig far to uncover some startling information that will change the way we look at the world.
On one level, this chapter is not as difficult as it may first appear. As with many portions of scripture, particularly prophecy, the answers and explanations for the symbols and imagery used are clearly explained in the verses that follow. Remember that this was all new to John as well, but the purpose of allowing John to see these things was not to confuse him but to show him “things which must shortly come to pass” (Rev 1:1). God is not the author of confusion (1 Cor 14:33). It is advisable to read the whole chapter before looking at each verse on its own.
In this chapter we will find some key characters, some of whom we have already met, which will make the task of identifying them much easier.
- Great Whore / Scarlet Beast / Seven heads / Seven mountains / Ten horns / Ten kings
Identifying what the Great Whore is, is not too difficult if we simply stick to what the scripture reveals and allow that to guide us. The question that is still open to much debate, even amongst some of the best Bible scholars is, who she is; i.e. can we put a name to the face? I believe, because of the information we are given in chapters 17 & 18, that we can identify her. Not only that, but once we do, it sheds light on the times we are living in and helps us to understand why seven times in Matthew 24 Jesus warned of great deception in the last days.
And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:
Following the pouring out of God’s wrath through the seven vials, this angel now takes John back to show him something of great significance, that answers one of the greatest questions of the ages, namely, “Why are there so many religions, and don’t all roads lead to God anyway!”
As we noted back in our study of Chapter 2, whilst on the surface, this seems like the ultimate in acceptance and tolerance – all people of all faiths, religions and creeds working together for a common cause, we should just stop and think about this for a moment: What kind of God would allow people to approach Him in any way they choose? What God would allow people to call Him by any name that suited them? What kind of God would establish a multitude of religions with contradictory beliefs and practices, see countless numbers of believers give their lives to maintain their religious freedoms and right to be different, and then reveal that actually they are all leading to the same place anyway!(?) Surely this would reveal a ruthless tyrant of a god on a par with the Roman Emperors who watched subjects in their empire fight to the death in the Coliseum?
Although those that promote the ‘all roads lead to God’ philosophy hail themselves as tolerant and accepting, they are in actual fact nothing of the sort. Consider what they are saying: ‘Regardless of what you believe, regardless of your heritage, we all have to go to the same place’; they are telling us that there is only one destination for all (whether you want to go or not!). That is more narrow-minded and dogmatic than anything Jesus ever said. Jesus said there are two destinations and we each get to choose: ‘smoking’ or ‘non-smoking’!
So now this great angel will show John God’s response to this question.
This verse is one of three occasions in the book of Revelation that John is told to ‘come here’ (Rev 4:1 / Rev 21:9), thus highlighting the following vision as something of great importance. What John is shown is the judgment of someone or something described as ‘the great whore’. Throughout scripture whoredom/adultery speaks of unfaithfulness to God, worshipping or serving someone or something instead of Him. This was the crime of Israel in the Old Testament and is graphically portrayed in books like Ezekiel and Hosea (cf: Hosea 1:2 / Ezekiel 23 etc).
The first commandment in Exodus 20:11 states that ‘You shall have no other God’s before me’. God does not want to be number one on a list of ten; God wants to be number one on a list of one. God is a jealous God and wants to be worshipped alone.
Isaiah 40:12-31 is a passage where God Himself argues His case against the skeptics and critics and explains why He should be worshipped exclusively. (See also Job 38-41).
The fact that this whore is said to ‘sit on many waters’ is indicative of her worldwide influence (as is confirmed in verse 15) in drawing people away from the worship of the One true God into spiritual adultery. This is possibly the greatest crime and so deserves the strictest of judgments, as John will now see.
With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.
Here we are told that it is not just the people of the world that have been led astray by her, but the kings and rulers of the earth have been intoxicated by her; she has become irresistible to them and thus she has been able to exert her power over them in much the same way that a harlot can over a foolish young man. “whoso commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding: he that does so destroys his own soul”. (Proverbs 6:32) – see also Proverbs chapter 5 & chapter 7.
“Fornication” comes from the Greek root word ‘porneia’ (from where we get the word ‘pornography’) it means “unlawful intimate indulgence”. In the Bible, worshipping false concepts of God are often referred to as: “fornication” for the unbeliever and “adultery” for unfaithful believers.
In this passage we are obviously dealing with unbelievers, hence it’s spiritual fornication that is in view. The fact that the kings ‘committed…’ shows that this was a willful choice on their part.
The reference to their being drunk with the wine of her fornication is drawn from Jeremiah:
“Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul: be not cut off in her iniquity; for this [is] the time of the LORD’S vengeance; he will render unto her a recompence. Babylon hath been a golden cup in the LORD’S hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad.” (Jer 51:7).
So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.
To help him understand, John is now carried away into the wilderness of both time and place. We will discover that this woman began her career in deep recesses of time and in a wilderness area. We are also told that whoever this woman is, she is seen riding a scarlet beast.
At this point we can draw from things we have already learnt, for we have already met this beast in chapter 12 and 13, and there we were able to identify this scarlet beast as 1) The Devil himself 2) Antichrist & 3) The Empire of Antichrist.
- The Scarlet Beast is the Devil:
“And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon [scarlet beast], having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads”…….“And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” (Rev 12:3 – Rev 12:9)
These verses from Revelation 12 tell us that the great red dragon that John saw is the Devil. John sees the Devil as having seven heads and ten horns. The seven heads as we have already noted are seven world empires that Satan has coerced and manipulated to bring about a second one-world government (the first attempt being at the tower of Babel with Cush and his son Nimrod – the first world dictator). The ten horns are, as we have seen (and as is confirmed in verses 12-13), the ten ‘kings’ that shall arise that will rule the whole world under the control of Satan.
- The Scarlet Beast is Antichrist
“And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy. And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.” (Rev 13:1-2)
Here we are told that the dragon (Satan) will give his authority and power to the beast, who is identified as ‘him’ being a person, namely Antichrist. Again the seven heads and ten horns are seen.
- The Scarlet Beast is the Kingdom of Antichrist
[The vision] After this I saw in the night visions, and behold a fourth beast, dreadful and terrible, and strong exceedingly; and it had great iron teeth: it devoured and brake in pieces, and stamped the residue with the feet of it: and it was diverse from all the beasts that were before it; and it had ten horns. I considered the horns, and, behold, there came up among them another little horn, before whom there were three of the first horns plucked up by the roots: and, behold, in this horn were eyes like the eyes of man, and a mouth speaking great things.
[The interpretation] Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces. And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. (Dan 7:7-8 & Dan 7:23-24)
Here the beast is described as a kingdom.
Thus the Beast is symbolic of 1) the Devil, 2) Antichrist and 3) his kingdom that is yet to arise. This is not as hard to understand as it first seems, for how could these three be separated since their mission and purpose are one? Antichrist is empowered by the Devil and is the ruler of his kingdom, thus we have one image of the scarlet beast depicting the whole.
We should note from the context that it is the beast who is ‘full of names of blasphemy’ (as we noted in chapter 13) and who has ‘seven heads and ten horns’ and not the woman. This may seem like an obvious point to mention, but may who have tried to understand this chapter have confused this an see the seven heads as being connected to the woman, which has led to a number of erroneous interpretations being put forward.
What should grab our attention however is that this woman is riding the beast! So just who is she that she can ‘ride’ upon Satan’s kingdom?
And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:
Very much like a photo-fit that the police put together to identify a criminal based on the information about height, skin colour, hair colour, eye colour, age etc, etc. we can build a picture from the information given that help us to identify this woman.
- She is a woman (I know that’s obvious but mustn’t be overlooked)
There is a definite contrast drawn here between this woman and the woman in chapter 12. As we discovered, the woman in chapter 12 was the mystical Eve whose Seed would ultimately bruise the seed of the Serpent. This righteous woman was then clothed with the nation of Israel for protection; eventually, through the nation of Israel, the Seed of the woman (implying a virgin birth because normally the seed comes from the man), the Messiah was born of Mary.
The woman in Revelation 17 represents everything that in not righteous, and everything that is anti-Christ. In contrast to the woman in Revelation 12, whose purpose was to prepare the way for the true Messiah, the woman in Revelation 17 & 18 has existed to prepare the way for the false messiah, the seed of the Serpent, viz. Antichrist, who will cause all men to worship Satan.
- She is clothed in purple and scarlet
In the Jewish Tabernacle there were 3 primary colours: “Moreover you shall make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine woven linen and blue, purple, and scarlet thread; with artistic designs of cherubim you shall weave them.” (Exodus 26:1)
As numbers have significance in scripture, so do colours:
Blue = Heavenly Realm Purple = Royal Realm Scarlet = Earthly Realm
Notice that in this woman’s clothing blue is omitted suggesting a self-appointed exalted status on the earth. Notice also that she is clothed with purple & scarlet. The woman in chapter 12 was clothed with Israel ‘to get the job done’. This harlot has a covering for the same reason.
- She is rich – being decked with gold, precious stones and pearls
- She has a cup in her hand full of things that are an offence to God
And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
The key point that John notes are these:
- There is something mysterious about her, something hidden / spiritual
- She is identified with Babylon
- She is a mother (which means she has children)
- Abominations started with her (Mother of harlots AND abominations)
- Her influence is worldwide
And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.
- She is responsible for shedding the blood of saints
- She is also responsible for shedding the blood of the martyrs of Jesus
Who are the saints if they are not the martyrs of Jesus? Why repeat the same thing twice unless one applies to one group and one to another? ‘Martyrs of Jesus Christ’ is clear enough, and as we will show in a moment, countless numbers of martyrs have been killed at the hand of this woman; But who are the saints? The only other group to be called ‘saints; in the Bible are the Jews.
See: Deut 33:2-3 / 1 Sam 2:9 / 2 Chron 6:41 / Psalm 16:3 / Psalm 30:4 / Daniel 7:21-22,25 / Hosea 11:12
We will also see in a moment how this woman is responsible for shedding the blood of the Jews and almost single-handedly elevating ‘Anti-Semitism’ to the lamentable height it reached during the Holocaust – something that is destined to be repeated, and even exceeded (See Zechariah 13:9).
When John saw her, the Greek implies that he ‘perceived’ and was amazed. It’s as if the penny drops, all of a sudden the lights go on. As we go on with our study we will probably find that the same happens to us!
And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.
The angel says ‘why was this such a surprise?’ This strongly suggests that by now John had understood to a point, but that it should not have been such a surprise if he had done his homework properly. This is the way it is for many Christians; if only they would do their homework they would realise that all the pieces of the jigsaw are laid out in scripture and it is just a matter of putting it all together. “It It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter.” (Proverbs 25:2) The angel then proceeds to take John through the vision, explaining these two mysteries, firstly the mystery of the beast that has seven heads and ten horns, and then the mystery of this immoral woman.
The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.
We have already identified the beast as the Devil / Antichrist / his kingdom. In Rev 11:7 we read (regarding the ministry of the Two Witnesses): “And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them”. Thus we know that this is referring to Antichrist himself. The fact that he ‘was, and is not; and shall…..’ shows that the spirit of Antichrist existed in the past, then for a while was put out of the way, and now finally he returns only to be ‘consumed by the brightness of Jesus’ coming’ (2 Thessalonians 2:8) and to go into perdition (Rev 19:20). So the question we then need to ask is: when did the spirit of antichrist manifest itself in the past?
The answer is, in the person of Judas Iscariot. In Luke 22:2-4 we read: “And the chief priests and scribes sought how they might kill him; for they feared the people. Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve. And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains, how he might betray him unto them.”
We are also told in John 17:12 by Jesus: “While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.” (Ps 41:9 / Ps 109:8 cf. Acts 1:20).
Thus the same spirit that will indwell Antichrist, i.e. Satan, indwelt Judas Iscariot, whom we are told went to perdition, where also Antichrist will go.
…. whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world
Whist this is not good news for those for whom it concerns, it is a remarkable fact that those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life, have had their names written in it before God had even created the world! What a great comfort that God not only called you (if you are a believer) by name (John 15:16), but also because ‘salvation is of the Lord’ (Jonah 2:9) and is not about your own ability or worthiness but His, God knew for certain that you would be His for eternity, and to prove it He has recorded your name in the Lamb’s book of life! In a nutshell – you are safe in God’s hands and He will never let you go! (see also John 10:27-29).
Someone might object that this means God has already chosen those who are to be saved. True, but then simply put your trust in Jesus Christ as the only and only payment for your sins and you will suddenly find that you name was in the Lamb’s book of life all along! It is often put this way: At Heaven’s gate there is a sign which reads “Whosoever will may enter”, yet when from the inside you look back you will see another sign that declares “Chosen in Him from before the foundation of the World!” You see, God does not violate our free choice, but because He is outside of time He knows the end from the beginning
And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth.
If we use our minds, we can deduce from what we have already seen that the seven heads are symbolic of the kingdoms of this world. Mountains in scripture are symbolic of kingdoms (see Dan 2:37), which leads us into the next verse which tells us:
And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come; and when he cometh, he must continue a short space.
This is a straight forward logical deduction. Seven kingdoms would suggest seven kings. We are then told that five are no longer, one is in power at that time, and the seventh is yet to come. Consistent with what we know from world history, there were five kingdoms up to the time of John – 1) Egypt, 2) Assyria, 3) Babylon, 4) Medo-Persia, & 5) Greece. When John wrote Revelation, Rome, being the sixth was in power. Then, confirming the prophecies of Daniel 2 and 7, a final world kingdom will arise but will only be in power for a short time.
And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition.
According to Daniel 7:24 the seventh world kingdom will comprise of 10 kings, (three of whom will fall before Antichrist). So Antichrist will be of the seven (world kingdoms) but will supersede them becoming the eighth; and as we have noted already, he will go into perdition.
And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.
Continuing the explanation, the angel tells John quite clearly that the 10 horns are the 10 kings that will reign for a short time with Antichrist.
These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.
These ‘kings’ – which may well represent the 10 regions that certain groups have already divided the world into for economic and political purposes – will be deceived by the miracles, signs and wonders that the False Prophet (see Rev 13) will do to convince them that they should follow Antichrist. (See also Rev 16:14)
These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.
This shows that they are not – or will not – be ignorant of prophecy (albeit the distorted version that Antichrist will feed them) for they are expecting Jesus to return and as we saw in the previous chapter, they will march to Armageddon in order to fight.
…they that are with Him… that will be us! We have been called by Him, chosen by Him and are faithful. Our faithfulness is a gift from God also and is in contrast to those who so foolishly and arrogantly make war with the Lamb, their Creator.
This completes the angel’s explanation of the ‘mystery of the beast’ (see again v. 7). Now our attention turns to the woman, as the angel explains…
And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues.
For his explanation of the mystery of this woman, the angel begins by highlighting that her influence is global, and that the waters represent the people of the world.
And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire.
The next piece of information John is given reveals what at first may seem a surprising twist! We saw in verse 3 that the woman was sat upon the beast/kings, exerting her influence over them, yet now we find they turn on her!
[Amidst all the other details we are given, it is actually the destruction and judgment of this woman (at the hand of these kings) that is the focus of chapter 17 and 18].
The 10 kings ruling the earth will get tired of the woman’s influence and her sitting on their backs, and will cast her off and destroy her.
[Note that these kings shall hate her etc. We are told that his will happen (i.e. is about to happen) but it is not happening yet. The reason for making this point will become clear as we move into the next chapter].
Now the diligent may spot a potential problem here; surely this woman, who has taken the worship that was due to God alone, is of the Devil. But surely also the 10 kings are being manipulated by the Devil? That being the case didn’t Jesus say that a kingdom divided against itself will fall? (Matt 12:25-26). The truth is that the Devil is not bothered about having human allies; he just wants to bring about the destruction of man (1 Peter 5:8) and is quite happy to play one side against the other in order to fulfill his goal.
[Those familiar with the Star Wars saga, this is just like Senator Palpatine who played one side against the other, creating a ‘false’ war that led to the Senate voting for the creation of a clone army (that was under Palpatine’s control all along) and also engineering the situation to ensure he was given emergency powers, putting him in sole charge of the Republic. This interesting similarity is the patience of Palpatine and the behind-the-scenes planning that went on for years. In just the same way Satan is patiently manipulating both the world’s political systems and the religious systems to do his bidding].
The false religious system that has led people away from the worship of the true God, and symbolised as this woman, has been skillfully established by Satan since the time of the Tower of Babel with one purpose: to unite all mankind, thus reversing the effects of the Tower of Babel where God confused the languages of the people (Gen 11:7). Once mankind has been reunited again (through this false religious system) Satan will have no further use for it so will destroy it using the 10 kings. He will then cause all mankind to worship him in the person of Antichrist. (See again Rev 13:3-4 / also Isaiah 14:14).
For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.
Although it has been Satan manipulating things behind the scenes, God will put into the hearts of the 10 kings to destroy Babylon – the great whore and fountain of all false religion on earth – in order that He might bring His wrath and judgment against her. Satan, as we have mentioned will not oppose this because the false religious system has fulfilled its purpose.
There are many in the world who will say that all roads lead to God, that all religions are just worshipping God in their own way. This is actually much closer to the truth than many people realise… it’s just that they have the wrong god!
In actual fact, all roads (except the narrow one that Jesus said leads to life -Matt 7:13), will ultimately lead to the same place – worshipping Satan as god. Ecumenical movements and attempts to remove doctrinal barriers through things like the Alpha Course, or other such things, may seem good on the surface, but by watering down the gospel, by blurring the edges, they are playing right into the hands of Satan who is establishing a one-world-church of all ‘faiths’.
And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.
In verse 7 the angel told John he would show him the mystery of both the Beast and the Woman. Thus far he has helped John identify the beast as Satan & his 10 kings, and has given clues as to the identity of the women, to summarise:
- She has world-wide influence, and has had throughout history.
- She wields her influence over kings (governments) and subjects alike.
- She is specifically associated with an historical city.
- She is clothed in purple & scarlet, gold, precious stones and pearls.
- Thus she is immeasurably wealthy
- She is a mother, so must have offspring.
- She is full of abominations
- She is given to fornication
- She is responsible for shedding the blood of Jews and Christians
- She will manipulate the 10 kings for a short time until they destroy her
OK, now for the punch line: What city and who is the woman?
The Identity of the Harlot
The answer favoured by many commentators is that the city is Rome and the great whore is the Roman Catholic Church who will bring together all false religions in the last days.
In support of this view is the fact that the city that reigned over the kings of the earth in John’s day was indeed the city of Rome, (although this was politically and not spiritually) and it could be argued that John would have understood the city in question to be Rome. However it was not until about 500 – 600A.D. that the Roman Catholic church became dominant; but from that time on, she fits our ‘photo fit’ so well that you would have no hesitation in picking out the Roman Catholic church as this woman in an identity parade.
In addition to this, one of Pope Benedict XVI stated aims when he became Pope in 2005 was to bring about a greater understanding and unity among all religions, Pope Francis is continuing that work. In January 2016 Pope Francis put a video on the official Vatican web site stating ‘Christians and Muslims are brothers and that people of all faiths worship the same God’. In response to this a Wheaton College professor, Larycia Hawkins announced on her Facebook page Dec. 11 2016 “I stand in religious solidarity with Muslims because they, like me, a Christian, are people of the book. And as Pope Francis stated last week, we worship the same God,”
Leading Christian author Dave Hunt in his now classic book on this subject ‘A Woman Rides the Beast’ makes the case with compelling information drawn from the history of the Roman Catholic church that she is indeed a great whore and mother of harlots. There is even a painting in the Vatican of a woman riding a beast that has seven heads and ten horns, with the caption underneath ‘The Mother Church’. Thus it would seem that even the Catholic church herself identifies herself with the harlot!
When we look at our list of attributes – our photo fit from earlier, the evidence would appear to be overwhelming.
She is a woman
As was mentioned a moment a moment ago, the Catholic church proudly sees herself as a woman and has a desire to gather all her children back under her wing. Also, Catholics openly worship ‘The Lady of All Nations’, whom they mistakenly believe to be Mary.
She is clothed in purple and scarlet
The two colours most commonly associated with the Roman Catholic church and her priesthood are without doubt purple and scarlet.
She is rich – being decked with gold, precious stones and pearls
Dave Hunt writes: “Rome’s wealth has been acquired through the sale of salvation. Untold billions have been paid to her by those who thought they were purchasing heaven on the instalment plan for themselves or loved ones. The practice continues to this day.”
(‘A Woman Rides the Beast’ Page 75)
Dave continues: “The Roman Catholic Church is by far the wealthiest institution on earth…….The value of innumerable sculptures by such masters as Michelangelo, paintings by the world’s greatest artists, and countless other art treasurers which Rome possesses (not only at the Vatican but in cathedrals around the world) is beyond calculation” (‘A Woman Rides the Beast’ Page 76)
At Lourdes in France it was recently reported that, in that one location alone, 59 solid gold chalices, rings, crucifixes, statues, heavy gold brooches – many incrusted with precious stones, the crown of Notre Dame de Lourdes that was made by a Paris goldsmith in 1876 and is studded with diamonds, were found. These items are of inestimable value.
All of this is in stark contrast to Jesus who told His disciples “The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air [have] nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay [his] head.” (Matt 8:20). Just before this, Jesus had taught His disciples that they were not to lay up treasures and riches on earth, but rather to lay up treasure in heaven where it will have eternal value (see Matt 6:19-20).
The Roman Catholic church truly is “decked with gold and precious stones and pearls.”
She has a cup in her hand full of things that are an offence to God
Having just noted The Roman Catholic church’s wealth, it may well be asked, how did an organisation that claims to be the church of Jesus Christ (in fact they claim to be the only true church, outside of which there is no salvation) end up with such a foothold in this world and so much riches? There are many answers to that question, each as incredible as the next. But one of the despicable ways that she obtained her great wealth was through the inquisition of the middle ages. During this time people were falsely accused, tortured and eventually killed, their property and positions being confiscated by the Roman Catholic church – and all in the name of Christ.
According to one historian: “The punishment of the Inquisition did not cease when the victim was burned to ashes, or immured for life in the Inquisition dungeons. His relatives were reduced to beggary by the law that all his possessions were forfeited.” (‘A Woman Rides the Beast’ P75)
Thus, as we noted in our study of the church of Thyatira in Revelation 2:18-29, in just the same way that Queen Jezebel had an innocent man murdered in order to take his property (as recorded in 1 Kings 21:1-16), so the Roman Catholic church took the property and possessions of those she put to death, thus making her rich.
Another way that the Roman Catholic church has become rich beyond measure is through the sale of indulgences. It is taught by ‘the church’ that unless you are a Catholic you cannot be saved; but even if you are a Catholic your salvation is not secure because you still need to be purified by your works. One way of achieving this is said to be through purchasing an indulgence from the church that, once you have purchased enough, will open the gate of heaven.
Indulgences can not only be purchased for oneself, but also for a dead relative or friend now supposed to be suffering in Purgatory. This is believed to be a place of suffering / purging that according to ‘the church’ exists between heaven and hell and is where you go when you die. Thus by purchasing indulgences you are told that you can effect an entry into heaven for the souls of loved ones by paying to cover their sins and thereby ending their suffering in Purgatory, allowing them to enter heaven.
In ‘A Woman Rides the Beast’, Dave Hunt says the following:
“The very concept of indulgences comes from paganism: the idea that the infliction of pain, the recitation of formulas, or the pilgrimages to shrines and sacrifices to the gods are meritorious and influence the god’s in one’s favour, The idea that saying so many Hail Marys or kissing a crucifix and repeating a formula could reduce purgatorial suffering which Christ’s sacrifice on the cross could not reduce, is bad enough, but the teaching that an indulgence may be applied to the dead carries the blasphemous absurdity a quantum leap further. The idea that ‘time off for good behaviour” could be credited to someone in purgatory who has not done the necessary “work prescribed” betrays again the fraud of Romanism. Anything is possible for a financial offering.”
Dave continues: “Theoretically it should take only one Mass to release every soul from purgatory; Mary’ whose power is infinite [according to Roman Catholics], could do it in a moment; and the popes; whose power is also unlimited, could empty purgatory with the stroke of a pen by simply devising an indulgence to do so. Why not, then? Do they have no love for souls? The answer is obvious…To empty purgatory would stop the flow of offerings for more Masses and endless graces and favours.” (‘A Woman Rides the Beast’)
Thus indulgences, the mythical place called purgatory and Masses said for the dead are just another way to extract money from the Biblically unaware and exert control over such people in the process.
It was the sale of indulgences more than anything else that roused Martin Luther to the extent that he nailed his 95 theses to the door of the Wittenberg castle chapel in Germany, which then became the spark that started the Reformation. How very sad that on October 31 1999, in Augsburg, Germany, representatives of the Lutheran World Federation and Roman Catholic Church signed a Joint Declaration of Justification reuniting the two churches and overturning the reformation. The basis of the new declaration was that Luther and the Catholic Church had apparently been in agreement all along about the issue of justification, it had all been a misunderstanding over words!
I wonder how the thousands who died during the Reformation (for standing on the clear teaching of the Bible that salvation is through Christ and by His grace alone) would have felt to know that the reason they were being burned alive and tortured to death was all the result of a simple misunderstanding?
The Lutherans are not however the only ones to be rewriting history for the sake of ‘unity’ as Dave Hunt documents in his book.
Another abomination is in the title ‘Vicar of Christ’ which is given to the Pope. The title literally means ‘one who stands in the place of Christ’ – and yet scripture teaches that there is only one mediator between God and man, and that is Jesus.
The doctrine of ‘papal infallibility’ which teaches that the Pope is without error when pronouncing on matters of faith, is another belief held by the Catholic church that is flatly contradicted by the Bible. The Bible alone is the authority and there is no man who is infallible except Christ himself. The obvious flaw in this belief can be seen by the fact that throughout the history of the Roman Catholic Church various Popes have made decrees that have then been overturned by subsequent Popes – so which one was infallible?!
And then there is the doctrine of Transubstantiation, which teaches that a wafer used in communion becomes the actual body of Christ; confession to a Priest; forbidding the priesthood to marry etc. etc. All of these things contradict the plain teaching of scripture and are an obvious abomination to God.
There is something mysterious about her, something hidden
The Bible says that this woman is known as ‘Mystery…..’ Again, the Roman Catholic has been shrouded in mysterious inner groups for the specially initiated. The understanding and interpreting of the Bible is also something that is solely in the domain of the trained clergy and even the reading of the Bible is discouraged for the lay person. The term ‘Mystery’ may also refer to this woman being ‘spiritual’. In this regard, numerous visions, manifestations and apparitions have long been part of the Roman Catholic church. Visions and apparitions of ‘Mary’ keep popping up all over the world, declaring that ‘she’ will bring peace to the world. The apostle Paul told the Galatian Christians that even if an angel from heaven were to come and preach another gospel “let him be accursed” (Gal 1:8). Another disturbing thing that is that Pope Benedict xvi has openly said he was in contact with Pope John Paul II (who died on the 8th April 2005). In an interview, Pope Benedict said that he regularly heard from his predecessor which was a great comfort to him! (http://www.oecumene.radiovaticana.org/en1/benedict_XVI_itv2.asp).
Certainly, the Roman Catholic Church has a deeply [dark] spiritual side.
She is identified with Babylon
From the time of the first century Rome was identified with Babylon and even the Catholic Church uses the verse in 1 Peter 5:13 ‘The church that is at Babylon…” to justify their belief that Peter went to Rome, and called it Babylon!
Countless Christians throughout the ages have believed that the Catholic Church was the harlot of Revelation 17 and even that the Pope was the antichrist (which he will not be).
She is a mother – of harlots and of abominations
The Catholic church has been the mother of all number of denominations that have come out of her, and yet retained many of her distinctives that have led many away from the truth of the gospel. We are told that the woman in Revelation 17 is the mother of harlots, for this I would strongly encourage you to get a copy of Dave Hunt’s book and see the abundant immorality within the Catholic church that has produced whores and illegitimate children without number. This is still happening today and is not just confined to history.
Her influence is worldwide – over all peoples & kings
We are told that the great whore will have worldwide influence – a fact certainly true of the Catholic church as was clearly seen at the funeral of Pope John Paul. The funeral was held at St. Peter’s Square in front of a sea of 300,000 mourners. About two million people came to Rome to see Pope John Paul II during the week before the funeral.
President George W. Bush was the first US President to attend a funeral for a Pope. Two former Presidents also went – President Clinton and President Bush (Snr). The Archbishop of Canterbury was present at the papal funeral for the first time since the Church of England broke with the papacy in the 16th century.
The mass at St. Peter’s Basilica was the first Mass of Requiem for a pope to be televised live in almost every nation in the world to an estimated viewership of over two billion people; the Roman Catholic church claims only 1.1 billion among its members. The funeral of John Paul II was by far the largest funeral in the history of the world and was perhaps the most-watched live event in the history of television.
Even before the College of Cardinals could offer official customary invitations to the various heads of state and government, over 200 foreign officials had expressed their desire to attend the Mass of Requiem. Among the most familiar faces worldwide were the current and former Presidents of the United States, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, the Chancellor of Germany, the Prince of Wales and United Nations Secretary-General. Also attending was Mohammad Khatami of Iran, not normally tolerant of Christianity in his own country. Khatami sat only two seats away from a traditional enemy of Iran, Israeli President Moshe Katsav. Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe defied a European Union travel ban to attend the funeral! Republic of China President Chen Shui-bian made an unprecedented appearance over strong objections from the People’s Republic of China, which had in the past prevented ROC presidents from attending international gatherings. Altogether, the Mass of Requiem was deemed to be the largest gathering of statesmen in world history.
All of this goes to show the unique Influence the Roman Catholic church has over the peoples and nations of the world.
She is responsible for shedding the blood of saints (Jews)
Hitler was a Roman Catholic and not once was he discouraged from his attempt to exterminate the Jews; in fact he even pointed out the fact that he was merely continuing what the Roman Catholic church had started. Roman Catholics have been taught that they replaced the Jews as God’s chosen people and that the Jews were responsible for the death of Jesus. More than 100 anti-Semitic documents were published by the Roman Catholic church between the sixth and twentieth centuries and anti-Semitism became official church doctrine.
Dave Hunt writes: “The rationale was that “Christ crucifiers” had no rights in God’s holy kingdom, the land of Israel no longer belonged to the Jews but to Christians, and the church had to wrest the land from the possession of both Arabs and Jews. To raise an army for the First Crusade, Pope Urban II promised instant entrance into heaven without purgatory for all who fell in that great cause. The knights and knaves who responded with enthusiasm to that deceitful promise left a trail of mayhem, plunder, and murder on their way to Jerusalem, where they massacred all Arabs and Jews. One of the first acts after their triumphal entry into Jerusalem was to herd the Jews into the synagogue and set it ablaze. On their way to the Holy Land, the Crusaders gave the Jews the choice of baptism or death.” (‘A Woman Rides the Beast’– p269)
She is also responsible for shedding the blood of the martyrs of Jesus
It is impossible to number those believers in Jesus Christ and His word that have been put to death at the hand of the Roman Catholic Church. Historian Will Durant writes: “Compared with the persecution of heresy in Europe from 1227 to 1492, the persecution of Christians by Romans in the first three centuries after Christ was a mild and humane procedure.”
Dave Hunt writes: “Every citizen in the empire was required to be a Roman Catholic. Failure to give wholehearted allegiance to the pope was considered treason against the state punishable by death. Here was the basis for slaughtering millions… Thus Roman Catholicism became the most persecuting faith the world has ever seen………commanding the throne to impose the Christian [Catholic] religion on all its subjects. Innocent III murdered far more Christians in one afternoon…. than any Roman emperor did in his entire reign”
“Pope Urban II (1088-99), inspirer of the first Crusade, decreed that all heretics [non-Catholics] were to be tortured and killed” (‘A Woman Rides the Beast’ p243-246)
Catholic historian De Rosa points out that Pope John Paul II “knew the church was responsible for persecuting Jews, for the Inquisition, for slaughtering heretics by the thousand, for reintroducing torture into Europe as part of the judicial process. But he had to be careful. The doctrines responsible for those terrible things still underpinned his position.” (‘A Woman Rides the Beast’ p248)
The following may turn your stomach, but communicates the reality behind the Roman Catholic churches Inquisition:
“Try to imagine being suddenly arrested in the middle of the night and taken to and unknown location kept secret from family and friends. You are not told the charges against you or the identity of your accusers, who remain unknown and thus immune from any examination to discover whether they are telling the truth. Whatever the accusation, it is accepted as fact and you are guilty without trial. The only “trial” will be by the most ingeniously painful torture that continues until you confess to that unnamed crime or heresy of which you have been accused. Imagine the torment of dislocated joints, torn and seared flesh, internal injuries, broken bones on the rack and other devices, mended by doctors so they could be torn asunder again by fresh torture. Eventually you would confess to anything to end the torment, but no matter what you confess it never fits the secret accusation, so the torture continues until at last you expire from the unbearable trauma.
Such was the fate of millions. These were real people: mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters – all with hopes and dreams, with passions and feelings, and many with a faith that could not be broken by torture or fire. Remember that this terror, this evil of such proportions that it is unimaginable today, was carried on for centuries in the name of Christ by the command of those who claimed to be the vicars of Christ. They are still honoured with that title by this Church, which has never admitted that the Inquisitions were wrong. She has not repented or apologized, and she dares to pose even today as the supreme teacher and example of morals and truth. Remember also that the doctrines which supported the Inquisitions remain in force within the Roman Catholic Church even at the present time.” (‘A Woman Rides the Beast’ – p250)
Dave Hunt, writing in 1994 pointed out the following:
“The Office of the Inquisition still occupies the Palace of the Inquisition adjacent to the Vatican, though under its new name, the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith. Its current Grand Inquisitor, who reports directly to the pope, is the former Archbishop of Munich, Joseph Cardinal Razinger”
If that name seems familiar to you, it should. Joseph Cardinal Razinger became Pope Benedict XVI in April 2005.
“And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus” (Rev 17:6)
The ‘prosecution’ rests its case!
Thus the case has been put that the Roman Catholic Church is the harlot of Revelation 17 and the city where she resides is Rome. There is so much to support this view and yet it also leaves some loose ends and questions unanswered. Two principle objections are as follows:
We are clearly told in Rev 17:9-10 that this woman sits on the seven mountains, which are identified as seven kings. Some have tried to link these mountains to the seven hills on which Rome was built. This cannot be the case for we are told that five have fallen, one is and the seventh is yet to come and when he does he will continue a short time. Verse 11 then explains that Antichrist is the eighth and of the seven. Unless we are to believe that five of Rome’s hills had fallen, only one was standing in John’s day, and another is yet to arise, followed by an eighth hill that is actually part of the original seven hills, this is NOT and cannot be referring to the seven hills of Rome. As we have already seen, the seven mountains (not hills) are world empires going all the way back to Egypt. The fact that this harlot is sitting on all of them shows that she has existed from very early in man’s history and has had influence in succeeding world empires. This cannot therefore be the Roman Catholic church.
A second objection is that nowhere in Bible prophecy is the destruction of the city of Rome foretold, nor is Rome mentioned even once in chapters 17 & 18. The only reasons to believe that the city is Rome is to support the idea that the woman is the Roman Catholic church, and of course that Rome was in power in John’s day. However as we have already noted, Rome was in political control but did not reign spiritually over the kings of the earth at that time. It could indeed be argued that she (the Roman Catholic church) has done so since about 600AD, but the city that birthed the religion and practices adopted by the Roman Catholic church was not Rome, but Babylon.
In one of the all-time classic books that should find a place in any Christian’s library, ‘The Two Babylons’ by Rev Alexander Hislop, written over a century ago, Rev Hislop shows how almost all of the practices that are found in Roman Catholicism were not original to her, but rather had their foundation in the religion of ancient Babylon. Not only this, but also that all religions, beliefs and practices on earth can be likewise traced back to Babylon as their source.
In Rev 17:5 we read that this woman has a title on her head which reads: ‘MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT…’ This woman is so often referred to as: ‘Mystery-Babylon’ linking the Babylon part to the Mystery part. It is from this erroneous link that we have the suggestion that it is not referring to literal Babylon on the banks of the Euphrates, but rather to a ‘spiritual Babylon’ that may exist somewhere else.
However what we should read is: MYSTERY – this is our introduction and underlines that we are dealing with a secret, something that was once hidden or concealed, but that can now be revealed as the angel is so doing. It implies that there is more than meets the eye, more than just a casual observance would reveal. Then we read: BABYLON THE GREAT – This is the same title as given to the city in Rev 18:2.
Babylon is mentioned 286 times in scripture (+ a few times where it is recorded under a pseudonym or encoded). But the important thing to note is that in every reference to Babylon, that which is in view is always literal Babylon located on the banks of the Euphrates river in modern day Iraq.
Our former pastor, Ron Matsen, drew out another provocative insight from the roots of the Greek words:
“Mystery” -To be interpreted mystically or spiritually
“Babylon” – From the Hebrew root word Babel (Confusion)
“The Great” – Greek “megas” meaning “huge” One might say her title is: “Huge spiritual confusion”
As we now discover the real identity of this woman, the connection with literal Babylon and the title ‘Huge Spiritual Confusion’ will become clear, as will the reason for the almost perfect fit of the Roman Catholic Church to the passage in Revelation 17. However in order to do this, we need a quick history lesson to give us the background………….
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth…..” that much we know; but what is often overlooked is that God finished his work of Creation and saw that it was ‘very good’ (Gen 1:31). We also know from the book of Job that when God laid the foundations of the earth all the sons of God shouted for joy. Now, if all means all (as we could reasonably assume), then it must mean that all the angels (who are the sons of God in this context) shouted for joy. It must also follow that Satan, who is an angel, had not rebelled at this point in time, for if he had, then God’s finished work could not be declared to be ‘very good’ if indeed the embodiment of evil was roaming loose in the earth, nor could it be said that all the sons of God shouted for joy if in fact Satan and his third did not. The fact that Satan did not fall until sometime after the seven days of creation is put beyond all doubt by Ezekiel 28:13-15 which clearly states that “You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering……..You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till iniquity was found in you.”
So if Satan was created perfect and was in Eden, and he sung with the other angels when the foundations of the earth was laid, what made him rebel? Why the change of heart? Pride. (1 Tim 3:6)
On day six God created man ‘in His own image’, and gave him authority over all creation. This did not go down too well with Satan (Lucifer at that time) who was the ‘anointed cherub’ – the ‘top dog’. Isaiah records that Satan said in his heart “I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God……I will be like the Most High” (Isaiah 14:13-14)
How could Satan become ‘like’ the Most High? Only man had been made ‘like’ (in the image) of the Most High and given dominion over all creation (Gen 1:28). No amount of wishful thinking on Satan’s part would change the situation. However, if Satan could cause man to forfeit his position, he could steal man’s office and he would thus be able to exalt his throne above the stars (angels) of God, and in so doing, gain the title of the earth.
So we find in Genesis 3 that Satan, who had been in the Garden with Adam & Eve (and was almost certainly know to them), takes Eve aside – and why else would she listen to him or trust him unless he was ‘perfect in beauty’, the ‘anointed cherub’? – after all it is stretching the imagination just a little too far to believe that Eve would have listened to a strange snake and thought ‘oh that sound’s like a good idea’! – and we are clearly told in 1 Tim 2:14 that Eve was deceived and in Genesis 3:1 that ‘the Serpent (Hebrew: ‘Nachash’ – ‘The Shining One’) was more cunning…’. Deception works by gaining your confidence and then twisting the truth. Thus the end result was that mankind fell and Satan usurped mankind’s position gaining the title to the earth. Thus mankind was made ‘for a little while lower than the angels’ (Psalm 8:5 / Heb 2:7-9), loosing his estate and standing before God – a condition that would have persisted but for the blood of the Lamb that redeemed fallen humanity.
NB: The book of Revelation sees the reversal of this situation as in chapter 5, a Man – Jesus Christ, takes the ‘title deed’ (7-sealed scroll) of the earth. Because He was both a kinsman of Adam and an ‘Avenger of blood’, He is found worthy to take the scroll and open the seals. From chapter 5 onwards we see Jesus building up to the ultimate showdown when He will dispossess Satan of the title to the earth, and will return to rule, as the Second Adam, reclaiming what the first Adam lost, and having dominion over all creation!
Satan’s desire has been to be worshipped as God, having control of this earth. However, after Satan was successful in cheating man out of his inheritance, God intervened in Genesis 3:15 and promised that a Seed of the woman would come who would bruise the Serpent’s head.
As you can imagine, Satan was not too pleased about this prospect and set about trying to destroy the Seed of the woman before it became a threat to him. As we know from the Bible, Satan’s first attempt was in having Abel killed at the hand of Cain. However, along came Seth and the world’s population began to grow.
By now it was starting to become hard to keep track of mankind who was multiplying on the earth; which one was to be the promised Seed? Satan had to do something; and do something he did.
Genesis 6:1-2 records that “it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them, That the sons of God [angels] saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.”
Genesis 6:4 continues:
“There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare [children] to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.”
Thus Satan sent angels to ‘co-habit’ with the woman of the earth producing a race of giants. By ‘contaminating’ the seed, the possibility of a genetically pure descendant of Adam being born would be eliminated.
Satan almost succeeded, had it not been for a man named Noah who we are told was “a just man and perfect in his generations, and Noah walked with God.” (Gen 6:9) Some modern version of the Bible completely mess this verse up! This verse simply means that Noah and his family were ‘uncontaminated’ by the fallen angels, they were genetically pure all the way back to Adam and Eve.
Thus God saved Noah and his family and destroyed the rest of the earth by the worldwide flood because “God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.” (Gen 6:12)
(Some have wondered why a loving God would destroy the whole world with a flood; these biblically unaware people have not understood that if God had not done so, there would have been no possibility of a Saviour coming and it would have been the end of the human race. It was in his infinite love, mercy and wisdom that God sent the flood, to make a way for people like you and me to be saved from an eternity separated from Him).
[The question is not: Why did God do it like that? But: Why did God bother to do it at all? He could have just given up on mankind – all praise and worship and glory to Him that He didn’t and that He has given all of us a second chance!]
Anyway….Satan’s attempt to stop the Seed of the woman had failed again.
After the flood, for whatever reasons*, Satan’s tactics changed and rather than attempting complete annihilation of the human race, he launched a two-pronged attack on mankind: one on the seed of Shem (one of Noah’s sons) through whom the promised Saviour would come, and the other by establishing a one world government and false religious system which he could manipulate and control.
*Purely as a conjecture, it may have been that, having realised he may fail in his attempt to stop the promised Seed, Satan decided to seduce a large proportion of mankind in order to become the object of their worship and then if the promised Seed did come, he would have an army ready to fight against the Seed of the woman. As it happens, this is exactly what will happen through the work of the harlot (one world church system) that will be the stepping stone into Satan worship and then ultimately onto Armageddon when the nations of this world will ‘give their power and strength unto the beast’ (Rev 17:13) and march together against the Seed of the woman – Jesus Christ.
The attempts to destroy Shem’s descendants was with the obvious intent of stopping the Seed of the woman being born. We have seen this through anti-Semitism (Shem-itism), and all through the Old Testament with Pharaoh in Egypt killing the baby boys, the giant tribes in the land of Canaan trying to destroy Israel (Goliath is just one of many!), the murder of the babies in Bethlehem by Herod and the list goes on. In fact much of the Old Testament is taken up with the miraculous way that God protected Israel so that the Seed, our Saviour, could be born.
Satan’s other plan was to set up a one world government and false religious system that would worship him.
It is fairly obvious that if Satan had just gone up to Noah or his sons, who would remember all too well the horror of the pre-flood world, and said ‘worship me, I’m god’ he wouldn’t have got very far. So he waited a generation and then began his ‘master plan’ with Cush, (Noah’s grandson).
It is interesting that we are told in the book of Judges that the Children of Israel “served the LORD all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders that outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great works of the LORD, that he did for Israel. And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of the LORD, died, [being] an hundred and ten years old……….. And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers: and there arose another generation after them, which knew not the LORD, nor yet the works which he had done for Israel. And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD, and served Baalim: And they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, which brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods, of the gods of the people that [were] round about them, and bowed themselves unto them, and provoked the LORD to anger. And they forsook the LORD, and served Baal and Ashtaroth.” (Judges 2:7-13)
In just one generation people went from serving God to idols, and we find the same thing happening with Cush. Cush was born after the Flood and although not specifically stated in the Bible, historical records show him to be the one responsible for starting the rebellion against God that led to the Tower of Babel. In ancient Egypt Cush was known as Hermes (which literally means ‘Son of Ham’). Hermes was also known as the ‘confounder’ or ‘divider’ of the people, which itself is born out in the Bible when God came down and destroyed the Tower and confused the languages; thus ending before it had even started Satan’s attempt to take control of the earth and receive the worship of mankind.
Nimrod (Cush’s son), following in his father’s footsteps started building cities “And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar.” (Gen 10:10-12) History tells us that Nimrod took people’s land by force and thus became the first world dictator.
In many respects Nimrod, who we are told in Genesis 10:9 ‘was a mighty hunter [in defiance of] the Lord’ was in may respects a prototype of Antichrist, and had he succeeded, would have no doubt completed what his father had started. However, as is well documented in Rev Alexander Hislop’s book ‘The Two Babylons’, Nimrod was killed – legend has it by Shem who wanted to put an end to this wickedness.
Nimrod had, prior to his death, established sun worship as the ‘religion’ of his ‘empire’. During the winter months when the days are shortened a celebration was held on the 23 of December (the shortest day of the year) when it was said that the sun died. That evening a log was put on the fire and left to burn out. In the morning, as the sun ‘came back to life’ the log was replaced with a trimmed tree as a sign of new life. This festival, known as Saturnalia, has been worshiped by pagans for thousands of years, eventually being added to the ‘Christian’ calendar and renamed ‘Christmas’.
Once Nimrod had died it left a real problem for his then pregnant wife Semiramis. Alexander Hislop explains: “If there was one who was more deeply concerned in the tragic death of Nimrod than another, it was his wife Semiramis, who from an originally humble position, had been raised to share with him the throne of Babylon. What, in this emergency shall she do? Shall she quietly forego the pomp and pride to which she has been raised? No. Through the death of her husband has given a rude shock to her power, yet her resolution and unbounded ambition were in flight. In life her husband had been honoured as a hero; in death she will have him worshipped as a god, yea as the woman’s promised seed ‘Zoro-ashta’.” (p58)
Rather than give up her throne, Semiramis told the story that her husband Nimrod, though dead, had been brought back to life as her baby son! And so began the worship of Mother and Child. Both Nimrod (supposedly now reincarnated as his own son) and Semiramis were worshipped as gods; she being known as the ‘Queen of Heaven’ with the extremely clever twist of claiming that her son (who she named Tammuz) was the promised Seed of Gen 3. Practically all false religion and mythology has come from this origin.
Thousands of years before the birth of the real Seed – Jesus Christ – false religions worshipping the Mother and Child were spreading out all around the world. In Egypt the Mother and Child were worshipped under the names of Isis and Osiris. In India, even to this day as Isi and Iswara; in Asia as Cybele and Deoius; in pagan Rome as Fortuna and Jupiter; in Greece as Irene and Plutus; and so it goes on. Alexander Hislop comments:
“Even in Thibet, in China and Japan, the Jesuit missionaries were astonished to find the counterpart of [the Roman Catholic] Madonna and her child as devoutly worshipped as in Papel Rome itself; Shing Moo, the Holy Mother in China, being represented with a child in her arms, and a glory around her, exactly as if a Roman Catholic artist had been employed to set her up”.
Also, at this time in ancient Babylon, the Hebrew Mazzaroth, that told God’s plan of redemption in the stars, became corrupted into the Zodiac that is the same in all the cultures around the world thus demonstrating its single point of origin.
We could write pages of how Christmas, Easter, Lent, Lady Day, the Rosary, the sign of the cross (from the ‘T’ in Tammuz), worship of relics, the doctrine of purgatory, an elite priesthood, the sacrifice of the mass and so many other things all had their origin in Babylon.
Sadly, even the Jews, God’s chosen people, got caught up in this Babylonian worship.
In Ezekiel 8:14-15 we read of the Jewish women weeping for Tammuz (i.e. Nimrod) who had been killed: “Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the LORD’s house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz. Then said he unto me, Hast thou seen this, O son of man? turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.”
Eventually Babylon as a city became less important but the religion of Babylon continued to ‘reign over the kings of the earth’ with the spiritual centre shifting to Pergamos (Rev 2:13) and eventually to Rome. In the fourth century after Christ, the Roman Emperor Constantine embraced Christianity in an attempt to unite his empire. In so doing, many of the ancient Babylonian practices (then being practiced by the pagan Romans) were introduced into the church and gradually Christian celebrations were put on pagan feast days; this way everyone could be happy!? And so eventually the Roman Catholic Church was born which was, and is to this day, a subtle mix of Christianity and Babylonian Paganism.
The very fact the there is ‘some truth’ in it exposes the fact that it is a mixture. As Jacob Prasch says, if I had two good eggs and one rotten egg and I made an omelette, would you eat it? So it is when you mix truth and error.
For almost 1500 years devout Catholics have worship Mary, believing that they are worshiping the mother of Jesus (whom they call the Mother of God – another Babylonian concept). However in recent times numerous apparitions have been seen around the world and this woman is now claiming (and the Roman Catholic Church is fully supporting) the titles ‘The Lady of All Nations’ and ‘Queen of Heaven’ teaching that peace on earth can only come when all people unite under her. The Roman Catholic Church is already working with Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus and almost every other religion in the world to bring about a ‘greater understanding and unity’ between faiths.
Pope John Paul told leading Hindu Sri-Chinmoy: “The Hindu life and the Christian life shall go together. Your message and my message are the same” (A Woman Rides the Beast p417)
During his 1990 tour of Africa the pope “sought common ground with believers in voodoo” (A Woman Rides the Beast p417)
In 1985 speaking to Muslims in Brussels, Belgium, the pope said: “Christians and Moslems, we meet one another in faith in the one God…..[and] strive to put into practice….the teaching of our respective holy books.” (A Woman Rides the Beast p418)
Speaking to Shintoists and Buddhists in Tokyo in 1981, John Paul II commended the wisdom of their ancient religions which inspired them “to see a divine presence in each human being….[As Christ’s Vicar] I express my joy that God has distributed these [religious] gifts among you” – an unthinkable statement in view of the errors of Shintoism and Buddhism. (A Woman Rides the Beast p418)
As has already been mentioned, Pope Francis is continuing with the Roman church’s ecumenical agenda, and is gaining widespread support from prominent evangelical leaders like Rick Warren (Purpose Driven author) and Nicky Gumball (Alpha Course pioneer).
The Identity of the Harlot – Exposed!
Is the Roman Catholic Church the great whore of Revelation 17? I believe the answer is no.
The great whore of Revelation 17 is a spiritual entity that had its origin in ancient Babylon as part of a deliberate satanic deception. Beginning with Semiramis, the wife of Nimrod, she has permeated almost all cultures going under various names and titles, most notably ‘the Queen of Heaven’ (See Jeremiah 44:15-27). Her mission from the beginning was to sow ‘huge spiritual confusion’ and lead people away from the One true God of Noah, Shem and Abraham.
However, just as the woman in Revelation 12 was clothed with Israel in order to complete her task (that being the birth of the promised Seed), so this Queen of Heaven is clothed with purple and scarlet and decked with gold, precious stones and pearls – the colours of the Vatican, the colours of the Roman Catholic Church. For almost 1500 years this satanic spiritual entity has used Roman Catholicism to her own ends, and will continue to do so until all religions come under her banner. When she has done this, the job started by Semiramis in Babylon almost 4500 years ago will be complete
This part of Satan’s ‘master plan’ will then be accomplished and all that will remain is the removal of this false religious system and the unveiling of Antichrist who will then cause all men to worship the dragon – Satan. (Rev 13:4).