MP3: The Mighty Angels of Revelation 17
Hosts: Nathan Jones & Vic Batista
The Seventh Bowl Judgment Angel
Vic Batista: We are continuing on our incredible journey studying the mighty angels of Revelation. Before we look at the Great Harlot of Revelation 17, let’s briefly go back to chapter 16 and explore the Seventh Bowl Judgment Angel.
Nathan Jones: There have been 21 judgments of God over the course of the seven-year Tribulation period. They’ve been divided into three sets of seven judgments: Seal Judgments, Trumpet Judgments, and Bowl Judgments. In Revelation 16 we were shocked to learn about how horrific the final seven judgments of God are going to be when His angels pour them out upon the earth. After the Seven Bowl Judgments of chapter 16, pretty much the whole world is destroyed and there’s not much left. The oceans, the freshwater, the animals — all dead!
Revelation 16:17-21 reveals the last — “It is done!” — and one of the most disastrous of God’s wrathful judgments:
“Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and a loud voice came out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, ‘It is done!’ And there were noises and thunderings and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such a mighty and great earthquake as had not occurred since men were on the earth. Now the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell. And great Babylon was remembered before God, to give her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath. Then every island fled away, and the mountains were not found. And great hail from heaven fell upon men, each hailstone about the weight of a talent. Men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, since that plague was exceedingly great.”
The Antichrist, the one-world ruler who will take over the world one day, so far has had his kingdom plunged into darkness and his loyal followers who have taken his Mark are covered all in boils. Now an earthquake so massive, even bigger than the Seventh Seal Judgment earthquake, will level the mountains and sink the islands of the world. In great the noise of thunder and lightning, the cities of the world collapse. As if this wasn’t bad enough, God flattens the surviving people with 100 pound hailstones!
Throughout these tragedies, the rebellious people who managed to find shelter continue to shake their fist at God, they blasphemy God’s name, and they refuse to repent. That impenetrably hard-hearted rebelliousness will lead the reader into Revelation 17 and 18.
There are 72 references to angels throughout the book of Revelation. Of these angels, the Bowl Judgment Angels of Revelation 16 will continue to play a role in Revelation 17 and 18 as well.
Vic Batista: Revelation is filled with the incredible activity of God’s mighty angels as they are fighting on the Tribulation Saints’ behalf and bringing about the fulfillment of some incredible prophecies concerning God’s wrath.
Vic Batista: Let’s dissect another incredible prophecies given to us in Revelation 17:1-7.
“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.’
So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness. And I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast which was full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. 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. And on her forehead a name was written:
MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. And when I saw her, I marveled with great amazement. 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.'”
There has been so much written about this Harlot in this passage. This is one of those freaky types of passages, wouldn’t you agree? When people look at these verses they go, “What in the world is this?!”
Nathan Jones: Yes, out of all the symbolism you find throughout Revelation, and there are certainly lots of symbols, Mystery Babylon the Mother of Harlots is one of the greatest mysteries. In fact, she is called in verse 5 “Mystery.” So, I am not going to be able to provide a definitive answer about who exactly she is. We’re told she is a mystery, a mystery that will be revealed during the Tribulation, and not during our time period. I can, though, give you lots of theories and ideas that Bible scholars have come up with after their studies.
One of the Bowl Judgment Angels, and we’re not told which of the seven, acts as a messenger of God sharing this mystery so that John can tell us what is going to happen in the future. But, as we get into the angel’s explanation of this woman, it’s just as confusing as the imagery herself! The Harlot is one of the most difficult topics in the entire Bible.
Vic Batista: The Bible is full of various mysteries. The Church was a mystery, the Bride of Christ was a mystery, and there are certain prophecies in the Bible that will remain mysteries until God is ready to reveal them.
Many biblical scholars have written books on Revelation 17, such as Dave Hunt who wrote The Woman Who Rides the Beast. So many theories exist, for like the Bowl Angel said, she is a mystery. I believe a lot of who or what she is will be revealed during the time of the Tribulation.
Nathan Jones: Yes, most definitely. And yet, the key players who accompany her, such as the steed that she rides, as well the Harlot herself, are key players during the Tribulation. I don’t want to underemphasize how major of a player she will be during the Tribulation and what she represents.
In the forty-fifth segment of our series “The Mighty Angels of Revelation,” we’ll explore this mystery more and why the Kings of the Earth commit adultery with the Harlot.