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Text: Revelation 17-18
After exploring the identity of the Mother of Harlots in Revelation, I’ve come to the conclusion that her description is the same description of Jerusalem. I’ve read Dave Hunt’s book “The Woman Rides the Beast” promoting the idea that the harlot is the Roman Catholic church. I’ve run the Babylonian references and read Two Babylons by Hislop. I’ve also considered that Babylon in mystery form as a system of religion and commerce in general. But none of these ideas fit the Bible. Only Jerusalem matches.
- JEREMIAH’S 1st SERMON – Jeremiah’s first recorded sermon in Jeremiah 2-6 unquestionably equates Jerusalem with whoredom. Much of the description Jeremiah preaches about Jerusalem in this sermon matches Revelation 17. The idea that Jerusalem is unfaithful is definitely introduced here.
- 2:2 espousals
- 2:13 fountain of waters like Proverbs 5
- 2:20 harlot
- 2:32 bride
- 3:1 wife, harlot
- 3:2 whoredoms
- 3:6 harlot
- 3:8 adultery, bill of divorce, harlot
- 3:9 adultery
- 3:14 married
- 3:20 wife
- 4:30 lovers
- 5:7 adultery, harlots’
- DANIEL’S SEVENTY WEEK PROPHECY – Daniel’s famous prophecy in Daniel 9:24 mentions that the prophecy is upon thy people and thy holy city that is Jerusalem. Babylon is not in God’s cross-hairs in the “end times.” The determination is specific to the Hebrew people and Jerusalem.
- THE CITY BECOMES THE HABITATION OF DEVILS – The mystery city in Revelation 18:2 is become the habitation of devils meaning that’s not what it started as. Contrast this with the fact that all Gentile cities, including Babylon, have always been habitations of devils. It’s called a cage of every unclean bird just as Jeremiah 5:27 said it.
- A DOUBLE REWARD GIVEN TO HER – The double reward for the city matches Jeremiah’s prophecy of Jerusalem in Jeremiah 16:16-21 and 17:18.
- HER RELATIONSHIP TO THE BRIDEGROOM – The mystery city says I am no widow in Revelation 18:7. According to God she is a widow, her husband was killed, but she doesn’t recognize her dead husband named Jesus Christ. See Lamentations 1:1 for the same type of language describing Jerusalem. Paul’s analogy in Romans 7 deals with this issue of the Hebrew relationship to Jesus Christ under the old covenant. Galatians 3 and Christ becoming a curse in order to free people from the old covenant also is about this relationship.
- JERUSALEM IS NOT CALLED BY NAME AFTER GALATIANS – The only Jerusalem mentioned by name after Galatians 4:25 is the new Jerusalem that is above. The old earthly city is never mentioned by name after that verse. Every reference from Galatians 4:26 to Revelation 22:21 to the old city is by another name. Other names include the great city, Sodom (Isaiah 1:10), Egypt, and possibly Babylon as a mystery. So the LORD will not allow that old city to be identified with him or have its name pass through his lips anymore after Galatians 4:25 where she is said to be in bondage.
- JERUSALEM GOES BY OTHER NAMES – Jerusalem is never named in Revelation, but it is clearly identified by other names. It is called Sodom and Egypt in Revelation 11:8. It is also called the great city in Revelation 11:8 and 16:19. With Jerusalem in clear view as the great city, beginning in Revelation 11 up to Revelation 16, as the hub of the beast’s kingdom and a death trap for saints carrying the name of Jesus Christ, it makes sense that John’s continued characterization of the great city in Revelation 17-18 would also be Jerusalem. An objection to this is that there are other cities in the Bible called great cities which is true because there are other great cities. But in Revelation, the great city being discussed is clearly Jerusalem starting in Revelation 11:8 and remaining clearly in focus until Revelation 16, and probably even up to 19.
- JERUSALEM IS GUILTY OF ALL RIGHTEOUS BLOOD – Jerusalem is the city responsible for the blood of the prophets and saints. Jerusalem is the bloody city and is indicted for shedding blood in Isaiah 59, Jeremiah 2, 7, 19, 22, and 26. Also in Ezekiel 9, 16, 22-24. Then the LORD Jesus Christ identifies Jerusalem as the city full of the innocent blood of the prophets and saints in Matthew 23:30-39. Jerusalem’s reputation with the LORD makes sense because Jesus said when he goes to Jerusalem he will be arrested and killed. And why Paul was forbidden by the Holy Spirit to go to Jerusalem, though he went anyway and was immediately arrested. When the prophets and the LORD Jesus Christ charge Jerusalem with all this innocent blood, John’s record in Revelation 17:6 and 18:20-24 is reiterating what’s already been said. An objection to this is to say that communism and atheism have killed more people than Jerusalem, but we’re dealing with the LORD’s biblical indictments, not Encyclopedia Brittanica.
- JERUSALEM HAS PROVEN UNFAITHFUL IN HER RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD – Jerusalem is a harlot (Isaiah 1, Jeremiah 3, 13, Ezekiel 16, 23), moreover the MOTHER of harlots. People naturally take this as generational as though this mother city is the first among many. However, MOTHER also means most superior as in the “Mother Of All Bombs.” Jerusalem has had more blessings and revelations poured on her from Almighty God than any other city. To whom much is given, much shall be required. Jerusalem’s apostasy is greater than any city on earth because she’d been given so much more than anyone else.
- JERUSALEM IS THE GREAT CITY – John gives the interpretation of the city in Revelation 17:18 that she is that great city that already described Jerusalem in Revelation 11:8,13, 16:19.
- JERUSALEM HAS AND WILL DRINK OF THE CUP OF GOD’S WRATH – Jerusalem would drink from the cup of God’s wrath in Isaiah 57, Jeremiah 25, and Ezekiel 23. The cup of God’s wrath at the beginning of the times of the Gentiles is Babylon according to Jeremiah 51:7. Babylon is a golden cup in that verse. The MOTHER OF HARLOTS in Revelation 17:4 has a golden cup in her hand. She is not the cup. The cup is the wrath of God and the beast, his followers, and this great city drinks from that cup in Revelation 14:10, 16:19, and 18:6. Peter said it’s time that judgment would begin at the house of God 1 Peter 4:17.
- JERUSALEM BECOMES THE TARGET IN REVELATION – As Revelation progresses the focus gets specific to Jerusalem starting in chapter 11. There is no reason to think that after chapters of discussing Jerusalem, there would be a sudden change to Babylon, a city that doesn’t exist and is irrelevant to the conversation and prophecy.
- JERUSALEM IS PETER’S HEADQUARTERS, NOT BABYLON – We know from Acts that Peter was headquartered in Jerusalem. Paul called Peter’s apostleship the apostleship of the circumcision in Galatians 2:7-8. The only indication that Peter could’ve been a missionary in Babylon was his comment in his letter. Except you know Peter’s ministry is based in Jerusalem to the Jews and Babylon in Peter’s day is a desert. Babylon, as a city, was essentially uninhabited when Peter wrote his letter. When Peter mentioned the saints at Babylon in 1 Peter 5:13, it looks like he’s derogatorily characterizing Jerusalem, the city he lived in. Furthermore, when Peter says judgment will begin at the house of God in 1 Peter 4:17, he then says he’s in the group at ground zero for God’s judgment – Jerusalem, the house of God. To top it off, Peter says this after writing a letter about the suffering of righteous souls under heavy persecution.
- BABYLON IS A WILDERNESS – An interesting archeological video of ancient Babylon (https://youtu.be/QtUNHjDmGOY) by Joel Kramer, a biblical archeologist.