-One of the angels who had one of the plagues (or bowls) approaches John and reveals the judgment of the woman (the great prostitute, Babylon, the immoral and abominable entity that defies Almighty God) who is seated on many waters (waters here as we see in verse 15 are peoples, multitudes, nations, and languages in great variety). She is the deceptive spirit who makes the dwellers on earth drunk with her passions and evil desires. She is full of blasphemous names in mockery and is adorned with much wealth and earthly prosperity. She gets drunk (intoxicated, influenced) with the blood of the saints, which are the martyrs (the testifiers who are killed) of Jesus Christ (Revelation 17:1-6). She causes great marveling, even by John the Apostle, but the angel tells him not to marvel (Revelation 17:7).
-The mystery of the woman and the beast is revealed with great symbolic detail and intricate descriptions of the powers that will arise and conflict with the Lamb (Revelation 17:8-13). There is a united front in the beginning (Revelation 17:13), and they make war with the Lamb. However, they are overcome (conquered) by the Lamb, for He is the Lord of lords and King of kings. Those who fight with Him are the called, the chosen, and the faithful (Revelation 17:14).
-There seems to be some eventual division and conflict between the evil woman and the conglomeration of the beast to make her desolate, naked, devoured in the flesh, and burned up with fire (Revelation 17:16). God puts this in their hearts to carry out His purpose to make them utterly evil and united in a common front with all authority given to the beast until the words of God are fulfilled (Revelation 17:17). There is reasonable cause to consider this woman to be the city of Rome and its empire with a possible resurrection to that type of government in the last days (Revelation 17:18).
-*Application* Certainly this is a mesmerizing passage with many variables, which creates a lot of uncertainty in our interpretation. There can be no doubt that we are living in a time where there is as much intrigue and inside corruption that sets itself up against the God of the Universe in every corner of the globe. The time will come when these evil entities will be more clearly revealed and things will go according to the prophecies. This is a time to pray and activate unified Christian effort for America, because of the moral decay and compliance to the unified world system that is setting itself up against the authority of Yahweh (The LORD). Our prayer is that we will never become the Babylonian society that is depicted here in Scripture, but it sure looks possible as we observe in current events.
Verse to Memorize: Revelation 17:14