Revelation 17 – The Harlot Roman Catholic Church
This Revelation Timeline Decoded Bible study focuses on the Harlot Roman Catholic Church, who is a Mystery to John, as she acts like a Christian Church in order to deceive people and kill the saints.
Revelation 17:1-2 “Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and talked with me, saying to me, “Come, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters, with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with the wine of her fornication.”
The seven bowls are judgments against the Antichrist Roman Catholic Church, so the context of this chapter is the Harlot Church.
Revelation 17:3 “And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.”
In the prophecies of Daniel the ten-horned Wild Beast is the fourth Gentile empire, or the Roman. No city ruled the Roman Empire but Rome.
The woman is the harlot Roman Catholic Church. Since she is riding the beast, it’s telling us that she controls the Roman beast.
It’s telling us that the Popes of Rome are the leaders of church/state Roman beast.
The scarlet represents the blood they have shed during their Inquisition of killing the followers of Christ.
They proclaim the blasphemous name “the Society of Jesus,” but they are really “the Society of Satan.”
Revelation 17:4 “The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls, having in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the filthiness of her fornication.”
“The color for bishops and other prelates is purple, for cardinals scarlet… The pectoral cross should be made of gold and… decorated with gems…”
(Source: Our Sunday Visitor’s Catholic Encyclopedia, 1991, p. 175, 178, 466)
The apostate papal church is adorned with gold, precious stones, and pearls; which we can clearly see in how the Pope and St. Peter’s Basilica are decorated.
The apostate church uses a golden cup that is full of abominations of false god worship.
This is why Eucharist ceremony wafers have a ‘t’ on them, for Tammuz. This is why Catholics get a ‘t’ on their forehead in Ash Wednesday, to represent Tammuz.
They say that the ‘t’ represents the cross, but there is a hidden meaning to almost everything they do.
The 40 days of fasting of Lent represent the 40 years of Tammuz’s life.
It is said that he died when he was killed by a wild boar, which is why eating ham is a tradition on Easter. Easter really represent Ishtar, who points back to the Babylonian moon goddess Semiramus.
In St. Peter’s Square an Egyptian Obelisk, which represents the sun God Ra, is in the middle of a sun wheel.
On 3/21, which is the Spring Equinox, when the sun rises at the Vatican, it causes the shadow of the Egyptian obelisk (which represents the sun god, it is a phallic symbol) to fall onto the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica (which represents the womb of the moon goddess). This represents their annual symbolic sexual union.
Nine months later, on 12/21, the pagans believed that their sun god had died, as the sun is at its furthest point from the earth. They believe that it was dead for 3 days, and then was reborn, so they celebrate the pagan sun god’s birth on 12/25.
It is the last day that should have been selected for Messiah’s birth.
Messiah was born in the fall, on the Feast of Tabernacles, which represents Him coming to dwell among us.
The Catholic Church pretends to be a true church, but it is really based on the Babylonian Mystery religion; and none of those things are from Scripture.
Revelation 17:5 “And on her forehead a name was written: MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT,
They are called “Mystery, Babylon the Great,” because they pretend to be Christian, but they’re really the Babylonian religion of Sun and Satan worship.
Revelation 17:5 “THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.”
They have created all the major false religions, including Islam, Mormonism, Jehovah’s Witnesses, the New Age Movement, etc.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church proclaims that they are the ‘Mother’, the author of salvation, the teacher in the faith, and the head of all believers; which is an abomination.
169 Salvation comes from God alone; but because we receive the life of faith through the Church, she is our mother: “We believe the Church as the mother of our new birth, and not in the Church as if she were the author of our salvation.” Because she is our mother, she is also our teacher in the faith.
181 “Believing” is an ecclesial act. The Church’s faith precedes, engenders, supports and nourishes our faith. The Church is the mother of all believers. “No one can have God as Father who does not have the Church as Mother” (St. Cyprian, De unit. 6: PL 4, 519).
Revelation 17:6 “I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus.”
“History of the Rise and Influence of the Spirit of Rationalism in Europe, Vol. 2″ documents “That the Church of Rome has shed more innocent blood than any other institution that has ever existed among mankind will be questioned by no Protestant who has a complete knowledge of history.”
Historians estimate that during the Dark Ages and the Inquisition, the Roman Catholic Church killed over 50 million people whom they deemed as heretics, most of which were Christians who dared to own a Bible (which the Church forbid) or proclaimed the Gospel of Christ.
At one event, remembered as the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre, an estimated 100,000 Huguenots (Protestant Christians in France) were slaughtered.
In Spain alone the number of condemned exceeded three million, with about 300,000 burned at the stake during the length of the Spanish Inquisition. (Source: Page 259 of an updated version of “Foxe’s Book of Martyrs”; 2001; Publisher: Bridge-Logos.)
Revelation 17:7 But the angel said to me, “Why did you marvel? 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”
We already know that verses 1-6 are about the Roman Catholic Church, so the explanation in the next verses was given to help John understand who they were.
Revelation 17:8 The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition. And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.
The first beast of Daniel WAS Babylon, out of which came Satan’s pagan worship system which stole praise from the Father. They attempted to built a tower to the sky, as if to deny God.
In John’s day, Babylon WAS NOT, for it had been overtaken by the Medo-Persian Empire, then Greece, then the Roman Empire.
And now in verse 5, John had been shown that the Babylonian pagan religion was still alive and would manifest itself in the form of the Harlot Church. Roman Catholicism is really the pagan Babylonian religion of Sun and Satan worship, mysteriously masked by the cover of Christianity. The idols of Babylon became the idols of Rome, which were then given Christian names.
John would have marveled at this grand deception of Satan coming in the name of Christ, so that people would worship a false Christ. The Jesuits, like the Babylonians, are pushing the world into a New World Order, where Satan will be exalted, where man will defy God.
The antichrist beast, the Papal Church, will be judged and delivered unto perdition.
Revelation 17:9 “Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman (harlot church of Rome) sits.”
This is a well-known feature of the city of Rome. All the Latin poets for five hundred years speak of Rome as the seven-hilled city. Rome is depicted on her imperial coins as sitting on seven hills.
Rome was the great power of John’s day, which is known for its seven hills (mountains) named Aventine, Caelian, Capitoline, Esquiline, Palatine, Quirinal and Viminal.
Among the early Fathers, Tertullian and Jerome may be cited as referring to this feature. (KA)
“I appeal,” says Tertullian, “to the citizens of Rome, the populace that dwell on the seven hills.”
Jerome, when urging Marcella to quit Rome for Bethlehem, wrote “Read what is said in the Apocalypse of the seven hills.”
Victorinus, the author of the earliest known commentary on the Apocalypse, says: “The seven heads are the seven hills on which the Woman sitteth that is, the city of Rome.” (KT)
Interestingly, an eighth hill, Vatican (Vaticanus) Hill, is located across the Tiber river from the traditional seven hills of Rome. After the papacy returned from Avignon, France, in the 1370’s, Vatican Hill became the headquarters for the papacy.
It was the site of the Roman temple to the Great Mother Goddess Cybele, which had, and probably still does, house secret tunnels under where the Vatican is located, where the secret worship ceremonies of Cybele, including child sacrifice, occur.
You will see that the Roman Catholic Church is the eighth head, which came out of the seven, so this reinforces that the Roman Catholic Church is Mystery Babylon.
Revelation 17:10 There are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, and the other has not yet come. And when he comes, he must continue a short time.
At the time that John wrote Revelation, five forms of the Roman kingdom had come and gone; 1) Kings, 2) Consuls, 3) Dictators, 4) Decemvirs, and 5) Military Tribunes.
The sixth form of the Roman government was the Imperial head, commencing with Octavian, better known as Augustus Caesar. This form of government existed in John’s day and was in power until the last Emperor was removed in 476 A.D.
During the ‘short space‘ until the 8th head would arrive; the seventh head of the Roman beast was the Dukedom of Rome. Renowned historian Edward Gibbons tells us that Italy was divided unequally between the kingdom of the Lombards and the Exarchate of Ravenna.
John was being told that the Harlot described in verses 1-6, the Roman Catholic Church, would rise to power after the seven forms of government of the Roman Empire.
The Popes of Rome were empowered by Eastern Emperor Justinian in 538 A.D., which was a ‘short space‘ after the last Roman Emperor was removed in 476 A.D.
This is the same message that Paul gave in 2 Thessalonians 2, when he said that the Son of Perdition would rise to power when the ‘restrainer,’ the Roman Emperors, were removed.
Remember, Paul and John had to hide their message, as they couldn’t write that the Roman Empire would be destroyed, as that would have invited more persecution from Rome.
From Key To The Apocalypse by Henry Grattan Guinness:
The sixth head of the Wild Beast power ‘which carried the Harlot is stated to have been in existence at the time when the Apocalypse was written. Of the seven heads of the Wild Beast the angel says “five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come.” These seven heads are interpreted to be ruling powers. Five of these were past, the sixth in existence, the seventh in the future. Hence the Wild Beast under its sixth head represented the Roman Empire as governed by the then existing Roman Emperors, and consequently the Harlot City borne by the Beast must have represented Rome itself.
Revelation 17:11 And the beast that was, and is not, is himself also the eighth, and is of the seven, and is going to perdition.
The Roman Catholic Church is the eighth, which came to power when the Roman Empire collapsed and the last Roman Emperor was removed in 476 A.D.
The Popes took the title of Pontifex Maximus, the title of the Roman Emperors, which can be traced back in different forms to the ancient Babylon. The Babylonian Kings served as both king and priest of the pagan Babylonian Mystery religion.
As priests, they bore the title “Pontifex Maximus” or “Supreme Pontiff,” meaning “supreme pathfinder” or “bridge maker,” representing “the path or connection between this life and the next.” They ruled upon the throne of Satan, which is the throne of Nimrod as the “hidden god.”
Revelation 17:12-13 “The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast. These are of one mind, and they will give their power and authority to the beast.“
The ten horns represent the 10 civil kingdoms which formed after the Roman Empire collapsed, and the last Emperor was removed in 476 A.D.
When the Little Horn of Daniel, the Popes of Rome, rose up among them, the civil kingdoms bowed down to the authority of the Popes.
These kingdoms only existed for a short time and were succeeded by the permanent forms of government in Europe.
From Key To The Apocalypse by Henry Grattan Guinness:
The ten horns are interpreted as ten kingdoms, then future, into which the empire should be divided. These horns or kingdoms first submit to the Harlot City, and then rise against her, and” make her desolate and naked, and eat her -flesh, and burn her with fire.” Their futurity at that early date is indicated in the words, they “have received no kingdom as yet” (ver. 12). It is a notorious matter of history that the Western Roman Empire was thus divided into the Gothic kingdoms, whose average number has been ten for the last twelve or thirteen centuries; and that these Gothic kingdoms have overthrown the city of Rome, and laid it waste, after having been subject to it for centuries as the city of the Popes.
Revelation 17:14 “These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords and King of kings; and those who are with Him are called, chosen, and faithful.”
Making war with the Lamb means they attacked His followers. They were the military power of the Popes of Rome, who were used to systematically persecute the saints, seeking to eliminate the witnesses against the Popes.
Revelation 13:7 says about the Popes of Rome, “And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.”
Countries, such as France and Spain, obeyed the Popes and followed his orders to persecute the saints.
Revelation 17:15 “Then he said to me, ‘The waters which you saw, where the harlot sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues.’ ”
Such was certainly the position of Rome. The nations of the world were then, and for centuries after, subject to her sway.
The Popes of Rome rose to great power in the 12th century, when the commanded the kings of the earth, and all those in their domain.
The Vatican has political relationships with almost every country in the world, and it has ecclesiastical power over 1.2 Billion people, who live in the nations of the world and speak different languages.
Revelation 17:16-17, “And the ten horns which you saw on the beast, these will hate the harlot, make her desolate and naked, eat her flesh and burn her with fire.
Horns of an animal, in the language of prophecy, represent the powers of which that empire or kingdom symbolized by the animal is composed. The Popes have historically ruled over the countries which occupy the area that was controlled by the Roman Empire.
From Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Bible:
These will hate the harlot. This statement will be accomplished if these same powers represented by the ten horns, that were formerly in alliance with the Papacy, shall become its enemy, and contribute to its final overthrow. That is, it will be accomplished if the nations of Europe, embraced within the limits of those ten kingdoms, shall become hostile to the Papacy, and shall combine for its overthrow.
And shall make her desolate and naked. Strip her of all her power and all her attractiveness. That is, applied to Papal Rome, all that is so gorgeous and alluring–her wealth, and pomp, and splendour– shall be taken away, and she will be seen as she is, without anything to dazzle the eye or to blind the mind.
And shall eat her flesh. Shall completely destroy her–as if her flesh were consumed. Perhaps the image is taken from the practices of cannibals eating the flesh of their enemies slain in battle. If so, nothing could give a more impressive idea of the utter destruction of this formidable power, or of the feelings of those by whom its end would be brought about.
From John Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible:
these shall hate the whore; her principles and sentiments, her doctrines, which are doctrines of devils, her wicked practices, her idolatries, adulteries, murders, and thefts; they will repent of their fornications with her, and cease from them; their love will be turned to hatred, and the latter will be greater than ever the former was, like Amnon’s to Tamar; and as it usually is with men towards harlots, when they see their follies, and how they have been deceived and abused by them:
and shall make her desolate; leave her, quit her communion; no more commit fornication with her, or join with her in her idolatrous worship; but come out from that apostate church, and renounce all fellowship with her, and persuade and engage as many as they can influence to do the same:
and naked; strip her of her purple, scarlet colour, gold, pearls, and precious stones; cease to give their power and strength, withhold their taxes and tribute, deprive her of her power and authority, civil and ecclesiastical, in their realms, and take away even her patrimony from her; and not only so, but expose her shame and filthiness, her abominable principles and practices, to all the world; which has been in part done already:
and shall eat her flesh; not literally, but mystically; not out of love, but hatred; they shall take that to themselves, and make use of, which have fattened her, as bishoprics, and other benefices, lands, endowments belonging to abbeys, and monasteries, and other religious houses.
And burn her with fire: alluding to the law in Leviticus 21:9 which required that the daughter of a priest, that played the whore, should be burnt with fire; and this is to be understood literally of burning the city of Rome, the seat of the whore, with fire; of which see Re 18:8.
that the ten horns, or kingdoms, into which the Roman empire has been divided, will subsist in this form at the destruction of Rome;
The Jesuits of Rome control the European countries, and once they are in full control of the world in their One World Government, they may command these countries to forsake their allegiance to the Roman Catholic Church.
Revelation 17:18 “And the woman (the harlot church) whom you saw is that great city which reigns over the kings of the earth.”
John is being told that it is the great city that reigns over the earth at his time, which is Rome.
Today, Vatican City is a city-state, making it the smallest country in the world, that has political relations with almost every country.
Presidents and world leaders who visit Vatican City bow to the Pope’s authority.
The Jesuits controls the city state of Vatican City, which controls the world’s religious and political leaders.
They control the City of London, which is the world’s financial power; and they control the city-state of Washington D.C., which is the world’s military power.
Quotes from our forefathers of the faith, about the Roman Catholic Church being the Harlot of Revelation 17:
In the book of Waldensian Pastor Leger called “Treatise on Antichrist” written in 1120, said “That treatise brands the Romish Church as the harlot Babylon, and the Papacy as the “man of sin” and antichrist.”
Waldensian Reinerius Saccho asserted “that the Romish church is not the church of Jesus Christ, but a church of malignants and that it apostatized under Sylvester—and that the Church of Rome is the harlot in the apocalypse.” (The Testimony of The Reformers, E. Bickersteth, 1836, p. 46 from the Testimony of Reinerius Saccho, in 1254)
Michal of Cesena declared the Church of Rome to be the Whore of Babylon.
Michal (1270-1342) who came out of the Franciscan Order of the Catholic Church declared the Pope “to be Antichrist, and the church of Rome to be the whore of Babylon, drunk with the blood of the saints.” Foxes Book of Martyrs, op cit., p. 445
Martin Luther declared “We here are of the conviction that the papacy is the seat of the true and real Antichrist.”
Martin Luther was an Augustinian monk, who the Lord called out of the Papal Church.
“The papacy is none other than the kingdom of Babylon, and the violence of Nimrod the mighty hunter… The papacy is a general chase led by the Roman bishop to catch and destroy souls.” The Babylonian Captivity Of The Church
“If you reject the Pope, you must expect to incur every kind of danger, even to lose your life but it is far better to be exposed to such perils in this world than to keep silent. So long as I live, I will denounce to my brothers the sore and the plaque of Babylon for fear that many who are with us should fall back like the rest into the bottomless pit” History of the Reformation vol15 p208
Nicholas Ridley said before being burned to death that the See of Rome is the seat of Satan.
He was the English Bishop of London, he received his Master’s degree in 1525 from Pembroke College, Cambridge. He played a major part in many intellectual discussions on religion, primarily Anglican doctrine. He also ordered the removal of images from churches under his jurisdiction.
Ridley, in his farewell letter, before he suffered, he said;
“The see of Rome is the seat of Satan, and the bishop of the same, that maintaineth the abominations thereof, is Antichrist himself indeed. And for the same causes, this see at this day is the same which St. John calls, in his Revelation, Babylon, or the whore of Babylon, and spiritually, Sodom and Egypt, the mother of fornications and abominations upon earth.” (Ibid, p. 45)
Again, in his Lamentation for the Change of Religion, he said;
“What city is there in the whole world that, when John wrote, ruled over the kings of the earth? or what city can be read of, in any time, that, of the city itself, challenged the empire over the kings of the earth, but only the city of Rome, and that since the usurpation of that see, has grown to her full strength?” (Ibid, p. 45)
Jonathan Edwards said that the greatest and most cruel enemy of the Church of Christ is the church of Rome.
Jonathan was an American preacher and theologian, who is perhaps best known for his role in the Great Awakenings of the mid 1700’s.
Commenting on the Roman Catholic church in his History of Redemption, Jonathan Edwards stated,
“So that antichrist has proved the greatest and most cruel enemy the church of Christ ever had, agreeable to the description given of the church of Rome, [Rev. xvii. 6.] ‘And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus.‘” “Thus did the devil, and his great minister antichrist, rage with violence and cruelty against the church of Christ! And thus did the whore of Babylon make herself drunk with the blood of the saints and martyrs of Jesus!” (History of Redemption, Jonathan Edwards, 1793, pp. 452, 460)
Quotes About The Roman Beast:
The dragon is the ten-horned wild beast power of the Apocolypse whose identity with the fourth or ten-horned wild beast of the prophecies of Daniel was recognized by the Church of the second, third and forth centuries. This ruling power, under a seven-fold succession of heads, is represented as Satanically inspired. In the later vision, the sixth head is identified with the form of Roman rule which existed in St. John’s own time, that of the Pagan Roman Caesars. (History Unveiling Prophecy, Henry Grattan Guinness)
Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Bible http://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/view.cgi?bk=65&ch=17
John Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible http://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/view.cgi?bk=65&ch=17
KA – Keys To The Apocalypse, Henry Grattan Guinness
Catechism of the Catholic Church http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p1s1c3a2.htm
Next Revelation Timeline Decoded Bible Study: Revelation 18 – Babylon Destroyed