We are now given more detail on Babylon . We will see that each person that lives in this time will either have to identify themselves to the Harlot (Prostitute) or the Bride (The Church).
? Jezebel was accused for bringing many in the church to live like the secular world. By this time, not only has it affected the local church of Thyatira …it has now affected the whole world! Just as ancient Babylon led people away from God into idolatry & wickedness…so the woman sets the nations against God. Many scholars believe that with the rise of the antichrist & the false prophet that one world church will be formed. However, it is a apostate (false) church that leads many astray. Even now we see the move of univeralism & the acceptance of all religions being equal. This woman represents the metaphorical Babylon : the apostate world system.
The wild beast is restored Rome , but also can represent the Antichrist. This is the same Beast we met in chapter 13, the Antichrist. The Beast is scarlet-colored, linking him with the dragon, Satan (12:3).
The Seven Heads
We have already seen that these heads represent seven mountains (v. 9) and seven kings or kingdoms (v. 10). The five kingdoms that had fallen were Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Persia, and Greece. The kingdom “that is” would be Rome in John’s day; the one yet to come, the seventh, would be the kingdom of the Beast.
The Ten Horns
Verse 12 explains that these are ten more kings. They parallel the ten toes of Daniel’s image in Dan. 2:36–45, the revived Roman Empire. These ten kings willingly give support to the Beast in his battle against Christ and the saints; and that, with the help of the Beast, they will destroy the woman.
The waters are the people of the earth. The woman will have influence over the whole world, politically, economically and, most of all, religiously.
Expounding…The woman (the world church) will become a great power during the first half of the Tribulation. However, the Beast (the Antichrist) will get greedy and want the power all to Himself (vs.16). Once the woman is out of the way, the Beast will then fully reveal Himself. He will declare Himself & God and demand the world follow him. Remember…the true church is the bride while the world church is the prostitute. These are turbulent years to say the least.
Regarding application…Apostasy. If the church of Thyatira during John’s days were on the brink of apostasy…how much more are we? Dearest brothers & sisters in Christ…when I say “we” I mean the “Bride”…God’s church. Now more than ever must we stand up for the truth of God’s Word! In a day where Christians are looked down upon for their steadfast belief’s..let us not succomb to the judgment of this world or even other Christians. Who do we fear…people or God? So many so-called Christians today want to embrace “tolerance” and use the label of “Love” as their reason to not follow what the Lord has taught in his LIVING WORD! I will not apologize for teaching God’s Word. WE should not apologize for living out God’s commands. The end times will only bring more apostacy & false teachings. Let us not form our opinions from this world or other ignorant Christians…but let us form our beliefs on the solid rock of Jesus!