7 And [kai] the angel [aggelos] said [epo] unto me, [moi] Wherefore [diati] didst
thou marvel [thaumazo]? I [ego] will tell [ereo] thee [soi] the mystery [musterion] of
the woman, [gune] and [kai] of the beast [therion] that
carrieth [bastazo] her, [autos] which [ho] hath [echo] the seven [hepta] heads [kephale] and [kai] ten [deka] horns. [keras] KJV-Interlinear
7 And the
angel said to me, "Why do you wonder? I shall tell you the mystery of the
woman and of the beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and the ten
John has been amazed and was in a state of wonder, as he was viewing the woman, so beautiful and yet soiled with blood.
Thus far the context has mentioned the woman, the beast, and Babylon, all of which are separate yet an integrated part of each other.
Babylon was a city of ancient times, finding its beginnings at the time of the Tower of Babel, when the first concepts of religion were raised. But Babylon is also identified as the woman, the mother of harlots and abominations. At the end of this chapter, the woman is said to be the city (Babylon) who rules over kings. The kings are scattered throughout history, and seven such kings are identified in verse ten. One of the kings is still future (the anti-christ), relative to our time.
So, even though the city has been a city and the woman can be a human being, these concepts take the principles identified by the original Babylon and from prostitution, and use them symbolically to identify just how Satan has used his evil to run history as he sees it.
The mystery here, is the thread that connects history together from Satan's view, and then indicates how this evil will culminate in yet another mystery in the Tribulation, namely the final religion headed up by the anti-christ, who after three and a half years of as failed government, will fake his own death, falsify a resurrection, and then under the choreography of the false prophet, will seize total rule and demand total worship of himself by the entire world.
Verses 8-17 identify this process and then verse 18 ties the woman (all opposition toward God, or false religion) into it all as the governing policy which Satan uses to execute his plan for history.
Religion is Satan's ace. Christianity is not a religion. That is an important distinction that needs to be clear.
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