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Fall of Mystery Babylon

Judgment on the False Church (17)

Chapter seventeen tells about the judgment of the False Church who is called the "Mother of Harlots" because of her spiritual adultery. Harlotry is symbolic of false worship or the worship of idols (idolatry).

This woman will be a one-world church and as is all false religion will be attended with lewdness. Religion has never been so rich, so powerful, united and so unclean. Before her judgment, she is in a moral and spiritual wilderness, but advanced in achievements of science, materialism and humanistic philosophy.

The Time of the Judgment

Revelation 17:3—So he carried me away in the spirit… Revelation 1:10—I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day…

The False Church will suffer this prophesied judgment in the End-Time. She is an End-Time False Church and will face her judgment in the time of the end.

The Place of the Judgment

Revelation 17:3—…into the wilderness…

In a general sense, the wilderness is a place of testing and more specific to Revelation it is symbolic of the tribulation period that takes place just before the Lord returns (12:14). This false church will be in control for most of the tribulation hour.

The Receiver of the Judgment

Revelation 17:3—…and I saw a woman…

In relation to Christ, the Scripture refers to the church as a woman (1 Corinthians 11:3; 2 Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 5:24-32). God illustrated His desired relationship with His people with the relationship of a husband and wife.

In Revelation 12, we read about the True Church ("The Sun-Clothed Woman"). Now, in Chapter 17, we read about the judgment on the False Church.

The Outstanding Details of the Judgment

She is a Mother (vs.5)

As she is a mother, she is producing something. The True Church produced a singular and unified Man Child (12:5), as well as, truth and strength. The False Church produces a divided and plurality of harlots (17:5), as well as, error and weakness.

She is Sitting (vs. 1,3,9)

Sitting is a position of control or rule. As a king or judge sits in their authority. She is a dictator over the people and nations (vs. 1,15 " many waters") and the beast (vs. 1,3,8,11-13,16 this beast is the anti-christ).

She sits with overwhelming control of the one-world government that is evil and sinful. The False Church rides in control on the scarlet colored beast. She is therefore in control of the nations.

She is Clothed (vs. 4)

The Bride of Christ is dressed in fine linen clean and white which is the righteousness of saints (Revelation 19:8). This woman is dressed in the attire of a harlot.

She is arrayed in purple which is the color of royalty. This woman is not truly royal, but is a hypocrite.

Not only is color of the beast scarlet, but she is also clothed in scarlet. Scarlet is the color of sin.

Isaiah 1:18—…though your sins be as scarlet…

She revels in all that is an abomination to God. Read Proverbs 6:16-19; Deuteronomy 22:5.

She is decked with gold and precious stones and pearls.

There are two Scriptural aspects to Gold. In the positive, gold speaks of divinity and the perfect nature of God. In the negative, gold is the best of the riches of the world. She is not godly or divine, but she is rich with the riches of the world.

All her ornaments are form the world. Her inspiration comes form the pagan and godless cultures of the world.

She Has a Cup in Her Hand (vs. 4)

This not the cup of the Lord, but is the cup of devils. This golden cup is filled with the abominations and filthiness of her fornication. She is not sharing the Gospel, but it is "another gospel".

vs. 2—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.

She is very influential. She has corrupted many others with the teaching of her false religion (1 Timothy 4:1).

She has a Name (vs. 5)


She is Drunk (vs. 6)

She is drunk with precious blood of martyrs who are the saints of the Lord Jesus Christ. This was all a great (megas) mystery (admiration) to John.

She has an End (vs. 16)

There is a two-foldness to her judgment. Her fall is mentioned twice (17:16 and 18:21).

She is hated and overthrown. At first the beast carries the woman (vs. 3) and the torn horns hate her and make her desolate and naked and then burn her.

She had her time of rule and it glittered like gold, but "pay day" always comes for the enemies of God. With every blasphemous act or false doctrine she added to the cup of her own judgment.

Revelation 17:16—…burn her with fire.