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Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by mistman, Dec 29, 2003.
Hi I'm new here and have a question. Does anyone think that the Babylon in Revelation is Rome?
Hi Mistman, and welcome to Baptist Board. Go "up top" and introduce yourself...
Regarding your question, you will find intelligent, not-so-intelligent, and often adament arguments on all sides of that question.
One thing I have noticed, though, is that of the prophecies in the Old Testament, even the scholars missed the meaning of many of them in regard to Christ's nativity. Perhaps it is best to wait until the time of fulfillment, or close to it, when the meaning of certain prophecies will be made more clear.
Personally, I think the Book of Revelation was written to allay the fears of those who would be living at that time. They will recognize the events the book talks about and, for those who believe, know the Lord is still in complete control. That will be a necessary comfort then.
Right now the book seems to be the focus of arguments instead.
Good answer, Helen.
Revelation Chapter 17: (NASV - updated)
4 The woman was clothed in purple and scarlet, and adorned[Lit gilded ] with gold and precious stones[Lit stone ] and pearls, having in her hand a gold cup full of abominations and of the unclean things of her immorality,
5 and on her forehead a name was written, a mystery, "BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH."
6 And I saw the woman drunk with the blood of the saints[Or holy ones ], and with the blood of the witnesses of Jesus. When I saw her, I wondered greatly[Lit with great wonder ].
7 And the angel said to me, "Why do[Lit have you wondered ] you wonder? I will tell you the mystery of the woman and of the beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and the ten horns. 8 "The beast that you saw was, and is not, and is about to come up out of the abyss and go[One early ms reads is going ] to destruction. And those who dwell on the earth, whose name has not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, will wonder when they see the beast, that he was and is not and will come.
9 "Here is the mind which has wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits . . .
Rome was famous as the city that sat on seven hills. This would seem to cinch the identity "Rome" = "Babylon" = "The Woman" . . .
But I would tread carefully in attempting to make more of that apparant identity.
The brief description cited could fit Rome (the Empire) or Jerusalem. But Revelation 11:8 definitely refers to Jerusalem, where it is compared to Sodom and Egypt. Many think that "Babylon" is yet another name for apostate Jerusalem.
The seven kings and nations (mountains) could be seven Middle Eastern nations in the vicinity of Jerusalem where the beast will set up his tabernacle. Babylon could be literal. Babylon (near present day Baghdad) was the literal seat of Lileth - the mother of whoredoms against God, starting back at Shinar - tower of Babel, etc. And the very first rebellion against God (Garden of Eden) happened in present day Iraq, too.
The RNC is crumbling from within. An Anglo Anti-Christ would have a hard time deceiving the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Ishmael.
It only stands to reason that if Jesus Christ came from the line of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the anti-Christ (opposite of Christ) would come from the line of Ishmael - Edom, Prince of Persia, etc. Just my opinion. I don't believe I'll be around to see the AC come to power, having been raptured already.
Do you feel the cryptic nature of apocalyptic literature (like Daniel, Revelation) makes such a wide variety of interpretations possible?
It would certainly seem like the writer could have said ROME or JERUSALEM (which, btw, cannot in any way be construed as seven hills) or SODOM or NEW YORK CITY and helped us out a lot!
But then we wouldn't have the "Left Behind" series!
LOL! I just re-read my post. What I MEANT to say was...
The RCC is crumbling from within.
It must have been a Freudian slip, come to think about it.
The RNC (Republican National Committee) is crumbling from within, too.
The writer tells us who Babylon is. "The city where the Lord was crucified."
She sits on the 7 hills (Rome). That shows the alliance the Harlot(Jerusalem) has with Rome. The 1st century Jews could not have persecuted the Christians without the permission of Rome.
Rev 17:16 tells us that Rome will turn on the Harlot and destroy her. (Rome in AD70)
Rev. 11: And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.
Rev. 11 doesn't say Babylon. It says Sodom and Egypt pertaining to Jerusalem.
I Peter 5: The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, saluteth you; and so doth Marcus my son.
Thought this verse was interesting.
Rev. 17:9 (ESV)
This calls for a mind with wisdom: the seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman is seated;
I am pretty certain that the seven mountains refer to Rome.
Also, weren't scarlet and purple the colors of imperial Rome?
Rev. 17:4 (ESV)
The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and jewels and pearls, holding in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the impurities of her sexual immorality.
Rev. 18:16 (ESV)
"Alas, alas, for the great city
that was clothed in fine linen,
in purple and scarlet,
adorned with gold,
with jewels, and with pearls!
It is Rome, the Harlot is shown sitting on the hills. This represents an alliance that the Jews had with Rome to persecute the early church.
So were the Priests of the Jewish Temple.
Ex 28: 5 And they shall take the gold , and the blue, and the purple, and the scarlet , and the fine linen.
6 And they shall make the ephod of gold, of blue, and purple, scarlet, and fine twined linen, the work of the skilful workman7 It shall have two shoulder-pieces joined to the two ends thereof, that it may be joined together.8 And the skilfully woven band, which is upon it, wherewith to gird it on, shall be like the work thereof and of the same piece; of gold, of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen..9 And thou shalt take two onyx stones, and grave on them the names of the children of Israel:10 six of their names on the one stone, and the names of the six that remain on the other stone, according to their birth.11 With the work of an engraver in stone, like the engravings of a signet, shalt thou engrave the two stones, according to the names of the children of Israel: thou shalt make them to be inclosed in settings of gold.
The audience to whom Revelation was written would have known it to be the Jewish priests, not some future Pope.
Who is the "great city"?
Rev 11:8 And their dead bodies lie in the street of the great city , which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.
Israel all through the Old Testament is called an adulterer and Whore.
Jer 3:8 And I saw, when, for this very cause that backsliding Israel had committed adultery , I had put her away and given her a bill of divorcement, yet treacherous Judah her sister feared not; but she also went and played the harlot .
Again we get back to audience relevency. The 1st century christians(mostly Jews) would have understood this to be Old Covenant Israel with it's power in Jerusalem.
It also states in Revelation:
Rev18:24 And in her was found the blood of prophets and of saints, and of all that have been slain upon the earth.
Did the church at Rome kill the prophets and the saints? Not according to Jesus, He tells us exactly who did:
Matt 23: 30 and say, If we had been in the days of our fathers , we should not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets .
31 Wherefore ye witness to yourselves, that ye are sons of them that slew the prophets .
32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.
33 Ye serpents, ye offspring of vipers, how shall ye escape the judgment of hell?
34 Therefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: some of them shall ye kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute from city to city:
35 that upon you may come all the righteous blood shed on the earth, from the blood of Abel the righteous unto the blood of Zachariah son of Barachiah, whom ye slew between the sanctuary and the altar.
36 Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.
Jesus not only tells us who killed them He tells us "when" His wrath will fall on them.
If we read Revelation without the presupposition that it is still future, it really interprets itself in most cases.