Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Harlot: a prophetic explanation

Revelation 17:1-6 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:


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.

Joshua 6:2-5 And the LORD said to Joshua: “See! I have given Jericho into your hand, its king, and the mighty men of valor. You shall march around the city, all you men of war; you shall go all around the city once. This you shall do six days. And seven priests shall bear seven trumpets of rams’ horns before the ark. But the seventh day you shall march around the city seven times, and the priests shall blow the trumpets. It shall come to pass, when they make a long blast with the ram’s horn, and when you hear the sound of the trumpet, that all the people shall shout with a great shout; then the wall of the city will fall down flat. And the people shall go up every man straight before him.”

The Harlot of Revelation 17 is a picture of a false church system that once was a faithful church, or came from a faithful church. Now she has prostituted herself to another government instead of being faithful, dependent, and obedient to her betrothed husband, the Lord Jesus Christ. This Harlot church is in a co-dependent relationship with a beast government that hates God and God's people. The Harlot church, since she is unfaithful to her Lord, hates those that are faithful and persecutes them. She hates them also because they will not submit to her authority. The prophecy of Revelation 17 has been partially and continuously fulfilled throughout the history of the church, mainly by the Roman Catholic Church, which became co-dependent first with the government of the Roman Empire, and then with the governments of Europe later on. Instead of fulfilling the commission of her Lord, she began to seek power and wealth and to persecute those who opposed her, especially those who remained faithful to the Lord Jesus. At the end of this present age when Jesus is about to return the Harlot will be judged and destroyed. This is described in Revelation 18 and appears to take the form of the destruction of the city or cities that are controlled by the Harlot system.
I believe that the story of Jericho, while being a historical account, is also a prophetic foreshadow of the judgment throughout history, and then the final destruction, of the Harlot system. This harlot religious system has existed in some form all through history since creation and has been judged in every age since then. The final judgment is yet to come. Notice in the passage from Joshua 6 above that the LORD tells Joshua to have the people march around the city once every day for six days. According to calculations from scripture, the world has existed for 6,000 years so far, and scripture says 'with the Lord 1,000 years is as a day', so it occurred to me that the six days may represent the six ages before Christ returns as King. In Revelation 20 scripture tells us that Christ will return and rule on earth with the saints for 1,000 years. This will be the 7th millenium.
I believe the 7th day in the story of Jericho represents the 7th millenium. This millenium will begin with 7 years of tribulation which are described in the book of Revelation and other prophetic books in scripture. I believe the 7 years are represented by the Israelites marching 7 times around the city. Revelation 18, as I said, shows the Harlot system being judged at the end of the 7 year tribulation period.
With this in mind, remember that Rahab of Jericho is described as a harlot. I believe the city of Jericho represents the Harlot system, and Rahab represents a group within this system that recognizes the judgment that is coming and that repents of their sin in being a part of this rebellious system. I will show more about this in my next post.

(Note: Archbishop James Ussher is one who made calculations according to scriptural information to determine the date of creation; he was Archbishop of the Church of Ireland, not a part of the Roman Catholic Church)

1 comment:

Jennie said...

Another parallel of the historical account of Jericho and Biblical prophecy is the two spies: they may represent the two witnesses which are spoken of in Revelation 11 and Zechariah 4. The correspondence of so many foreshadowed people and events in scripture is an amazing witness of the foreknowledge of God and His plan of salvation which He foresaw from before the foundation of the world.