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The True Bride of Christ



In Revelation 17 we find the collapse of the apostate world church. In the process we see Satan’s harlot bride, the delusion of religion. From Eden onward Satan has been building his church. Eve was tempted and fell into sin but never joined. Cain was Satan”s first member (I John 3:12) and the church has flourished every since. Today the church of Satan has many congregations. Some meet in those ivory towers of academia where God is banished from education. And if God is out of the equation there is only one other source of authority right?

Other congregations meet in churches, synagogues, mosques, cathedrals, and temples where organized religion stresses the achievements of humans working their ways to God. This is the church of good works, self-righteousness and “I do it my way”. This is the following of rules; the joining of church and the hoping the good out weighs the bad in the balance religions. This is the religion of many ways to God and many gods to seek. This is man’s making their god in their own image.

Jesus came to seek and save His Bride. He gave Himself to purchase her from sin and damnation. Jesus ever lives as a Great high Priest to purify and cleanse His Bride from all defilement. The True Bride of Jesus is a pure and chaste virgin, washed in the blood of the lamb, sealed by the Holy Spirit awaiting the day of marriage to Jesus

Satan also has a bride. We meet her in Revelation 17. She is a drunken, licentious harlot. She is the full-grown woman of the Tower of Babel. She is the Queen of Heaven of the Old Testament. She is the Mystery Religion in the cults of the near and far east. She is the one world church of the WCC and NCC of America. She is also the embodiment of a false Christianity, led by a false Christ and embodied in the image of the very mother of Jesus. That is why John was so shocked. No other beast in 16 chapters of death, demonism and destruction shocked him until he saw this false harlot bride given the deceptive name of Mary in religions today. Nothing is more Satanic and dangerous today in the entire world as the ecumenical (one united) church movement. God hates religious deception.

The 17th chapter of Revelation describes the Doom of the Babylonian System. This system is seen as a harlotrous woman. She seems to be a symbol of Satan’s world religion. This chapter records the demise of the counterfeit church Satan founded at Eden and has worked on ceaselessly ever since. The Beast (Satan’s incarnation as a false Jesus) finally destroys the apostate church (Rome merged with all world religions) and sets up unhindered Satanic worship (via the beast and false prophets work). His ultimate goals in the world today are to forge global unity politically, religiously and financially.

So in Revelation 17 we discover the true bride of Jesus. God’s Word is here unmasking the apostasy of false religions and revealing that the true Bride is made up of God’s own saints as 17: 14 describes them, they are “called, chosen and faithful”.  

The 17th chapter of Revelation can be divided into three sections. Each has a key verse that summarizes the central idea.

1.      SATAN’S PLAN EXPOSED  v.1-6 

2.      SATAN’S PLAN EXPLAINED    v. 7-15


There is a very significant contrast[1] between the two women of Revelation. God’s saints are seen in Revelation 12 and Satan’s church in 17.

First we need to look at SATAN’S PLAN EXPOSED  v.1-6

Satan’S plan is always counterfeiting God’s way

God’s way Satan’s way  
Narrow Way Broad Way  
Exclusive Inclusive  
True Church False Church  
True Bride False Bride  
Exclusive Ecumenical  
One Way Many Ways  
Heavenly Destination Earthly Destination  
Jerusalem Babylon  
City Of Peace City Of Confusion  
Spiritual. Fleshly  
Internal. External  
Creation Evolution  
Love Hate  
Life Murder  
Self-denial Self-Gratification  
Monotheism Polytheism  
Heaven Rules Astrological  
Spiritual Worship Idolatrous  
Divine Humanistic  
Contentment Covetousness  
Faith Intellectualism  
Spirit Religious Rituals  
  Cross of Shame Crown of pride
  Pure Bride Wicked Harlot

1.   Satan is orchestrating a Worldwide Political Unity [ seven heads equal totality of rule] Revelation 13:8,16,17 “all’

2.   Worldwide Financial/Business Unity  Revelation 13:17

3.   Worldwide Religious Unity[2] as the Beast is worshipped Revelation 13:8,11-12; 14:9; 16:2. The Beast is beloved Revelation 13:3. The Beast is honored Revelation 13:8. The Beast is confidently followed Revelation 13:4.

Secondly, SATAN’S PLAN EXPLAINED v. 7-15

Remember that the 17th chapter of Revelation describes the Doom of the Babylonian System. This system is seen as a harlotrous woman. She seems to be a symbol of Satan’s world religion. This chapter records the demise of the counterfeit church Satan founded at Eden and has worked on ceaselessly ever since. The Beast (Satan’s incarnation as a false Jesus) finally destroys the apostate church (Rome merged with all world religions) and sets up unhindered Satanic worship (via the beast and false prophets work). His ultimate goals in the world today are to forge global unity politically, religiously and financially.

Who is the Woman on the Beast?

There are 14 identifying[3] marks[4] of the Harlot Bride of Satan –

1.   The woman is a harlot (v. 1a) A prostitute or harlot is a woman who has promised but not kept her promise. It is a woman without faithfulness in spiritual worship. She is ‘the great whore … with whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication…'(v.2). This is spiritual fornication. The only city that qualifies – conspicuously- is the Vatican and the Roman Catholic Church. The ecumenical movement: in 1986, Pope John Paul II gathered in Assisi, Italy, the leaders of the world’s major religions to pray for peace: snake worshippers, fire worshippers, spiritists, animists, Buddhists, Muslims, Hindus, and North American Indian witch doctors. All to the ‘same God.”

2.   THE HARLOT IS a woman (v. 1b) The figure is a Woman. The central figure of Roman Catholicism is a woman: a sinless, perpetually virgin, all-powerful woman whom Rome invented and worship

3.   THE HARLOT IS wearing “Purple, Scarlet…”  (v. 4a) She is clothed with ‘purple and scarlet’ another identifier pointing to Rome whose external precious treasures of spiritual trappings making her beautiful.

4.   THE HARLOT IS wealthy beyond calculation (17:4b). There is no church, no city, which is a spiritual entity, no religious institution past or present, which even comes close to possessing the incalculable wealth of the Roman Catholic Church.

5.  THE HARLOT IS wicked in spiritual adultery (17:4c). She has a golden cup in her hand. This is the holiest instrument in Roman Catholicism: the golden chalice of the Eucharist. No doctrine in the world is more damnable than the doctrine of transubstantiation (re-crucifying Jesus at every mass in every church around the world every day!). This “Gold Cup” is a picture of a false and vile counterfeit of true communion with God. The golden chalice is filled with the ‘filthiness of her abominations.’ The Biblical view of the sacrifice of the Mass, the very heart of Roman Catholicism, and a denial of the completed work of the cross.

6.   THE HARLOT IS A CITY that is the center of a mystery (v. 5a) There is something deeper here than mere religious technique. Only the church of Rome is built upon that spiritual fountain of false teaching going back to Nimrod in the Old Testament … On her forehead is her name: Mystery, Babylon. Babylon is a code word for Rome. [Keating, Catholicism and Fundamentalism; Sibylline Oracles (5, 159f.); Apocalypse of Baruch (ii,l); Esdras (3:1)]. Also, Eusebius Pamphilius, in 303, notes Peter using Babylon as a code name for Rome (I Pet 5:13). The identifying name, ‘Mystery.” The very heart of Roman Catholicism: the mystery of the Eucharist; etc. Custodianship of mysteries which permit trading ‘in the souls of men”(Rev 18:3), such as Mass cards and indulgences, et al. Rome has its spiritual foundations in Babylon from its occultic origins, the Tower of Babel, and the attempt to reach heaven by steps of its own making. The Council of Trent, as re-proposed by Vatican II decreed: ‘If anyone says that the sacraments of the New Law are not necessary for salvation … and that without them … men obtain from God through faith alone the grace of justification … let him be anathema.’

7.   THE HARLOT IS A CITY that is “Mother…”  (v. 5b) this city’s system gives birth to much religious error and further False Systems. The Woman is the ‘Mother of Harlots.’ Both spiritual and literal harlots spawned by the millions.

8.   THE HARLOT IS A CITY that is Intolerant Of The Truth . (v. 6) The Woman is ‘drunk with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus’. No institution on earth has more aggressively and consistently slaughtered those who adhered to the Gospel of Christ. In the inquisition alone more were horribly murdered than by Hitler and Stalin combined!

9.   THE HARLOT IS A CITY that sits on seven hills (v.9). Rome called the Eternal City has always been known as the city on Seven hills (the Palatine, Aventine, Caelian, Capitoline, Esquiline, Quirinal and Viminal Hills).

10. THE HARLOT IS A CITY that rules over the kings of the earth  (v. 15).  Note she is first seated on the beast, which means for a time she directs the beast. This global political influence  “sits on waters…” stands for all peoples, has been often wielded by Rome in European and now world history.

11.  The harlot is a system which will be destroyed by the beast (v. 17) This will be when world religions are all united the beast (as we saw in Revelation 13) will change all religions into the worship of the Beast, the antichrist!

12.  THE HARLOT IS A CITY (v. 18). “Great City” is Rome. No other city in the world that is existing today has a three thousand year history of continuous inhabitation, and once ruled the world, and once headed a world-wide empire than has never been destroyed. Only Rome.

The Origin of Paganism in Romanism

So how did Rome inherit this wickedness? Hold on to your seats, here is an overview of world history in 3 minutes:

Pagan Origin: It is shocking for Roman Catholics to learn that the proposal of the Lord’s Supper as a sacrifice was first made by a Benedictine monk, Radbertus, in the ninth century and was the subject of many fierce verbal battles by the bishops until Pope Innocent III declared it an official Roman doctrine in 1215 AD.  The very principles found in the bloodless sacrifice of the Mass as it is in the church of Rome today can be traced back through the labyrinth of paganism to the fountain of idolatry, ancient Babylon.  Rome’s most blasphemous and massive religious fraud originated in Chaldean idol worship and will continue until the time of the end when, according to Revelation 17 and 18, amid the wonder and admiration of the world, Rome will be judged with violence and be thrown down and shall be found no more at all, for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her. This brutal, bloody, and blasphemous harlot is none other than the universal false church, the wicked wife of Satan! 

God[5] had no sooner begun the blessed work in preparing for himself a people than the Devil did likewise.  In fact, the first baby to be born on this earth later became Satan’s original convert!  See Genesis 4:8 this is where religion starts. As I John 3:12 explains Cain was the tool of Satan.  We shall now consider the historical, current, and future activities of this perverted prostitute.

The harlot viewed historically: Satan’s church began officially at the tower of Babel in Genesis 11:1-9 this is the beginning of organized religion, nearly 24 centuries BC.  Here, in the fertile plain of Shinar, probably very close to the original Garden of Eden, the first spade of dirt was turned for the purpose of Devil-worship.

  • The first full-time minister of Satan was Nimrod, Noah’s wicked and apostate grandson (Gen. 10:8-10). Secular history and tradition tell us that Nimrod married a woman who was as evil and demonic as himself.  Her name was Semerimus.  Knowing God’s promise of a future Savior (Gen. 3:15), Semerimus brazenly claimed that Tammuz, her first son, fulfilled this prophecy.
  • Semerimus thereupon instituted a religious system, which made both her and her son the objects of divine worship.  She herself became the first high priestess.  Thus began the mother-child cult which later spread all over the world.

1.   From Babylon it spread to Phoenicia under the name of Ashteroth and Tammuz.

2.   From Phoenicia it traveled to Pergamos in Asia Minor.  This is the reason for John’s admonition to the church of Pergamos in the book of Revelation:  “I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is…”  (Rev. 2:13).

  • In Egypt the mother-child cult was known as Isis and Horus.
  • In Greece it became Aphrodite and Eros.
  • In Rome this pair was worshiped as Venus and Cupid.  Dr. J. Dwight Pentecost writes, “Several years ago I visited an archeological museum in Mexico City.  A recent find had just been put on display which Mexican archeologists had authenticated as belonging to the period about 200 years before Christ.  The object was the center of religious worship among some of the early Indians in Mexico.  To my amazement, it was an image of a mother with a child in her arms.  This Babylonian religion spread abroad to become the religion of the world….”1
  • What was the teaching of Semerimus’ satanic church? That Semerimus herself was the way to God.  She actually adopted the title “Queen of Heaven.” 

1.   That she alone could administer salvation to the sinner through various sacraments, such as the sprinkling of holy water.

2.   That her son Tammuz was tragically slain by a wild boar during a hunting trip.

3.   That he was, however, resurrected from the dead forty days later.  Thus, each year afterward the temple virgins of this cult would enter a forty-day fast as a memorial to Tammuz’ death and resurrection.

4.   After the forty-day fast, a joyful feast {Easter} called Ishtar took place.  At this feast colored eggs were exchanged and eaten as a symbol of the resurrection.  An evergreen tree was displayed and a Yule log was burned.  Finally hot cakes marked with the letter T (to remind everybody of Tammuz) were baked and eaten!


How can we close? By focusing our hearts on the True Bride of Jesus ! When the true church exits the false church will remain as in all there are wheat and chaff… What is our hope as those who believe in Christ? Revelation 17:8sums it up. We are those who are in the Book of Life. There are 8 glorious elements describing those in that book. They are:

1.   Holy ones because all written there are called holy Isaiah 4:3 And it shall come to pass that he who is left in Zion and remains in Jerusalem will be called holy—everyone who is recorded among the living in Jerusalem.

2.   Happy ones because our names are written in Heaven Luke 10:20  “Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.”

3.   Victorious ones because they are Overcomers Revelation 3:5 “He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. Daniel 12:1 “At that time Michael shall stand up,  The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; And there shall be a time of trouble, Such as never was since there was a nation, Even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, Every one who is found written in the book.

4.   Joyful witnesses because they defy even the Antichrist Revelation 13:8All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.;Revelation 17:8 “The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition. And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.;Philippians 4:3 And I urge you also, true companion, help these women who labored with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life.

5.   Before known ones  because it was written before the foundation of the world Revelation 13:8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.; Revelation 17:8 “The beast that you saw was, and is not, and will ascend out of the bottomless pit and go to perdition. And those who dwell on the earth will marvel, whose names are not written in the Book of Life from the foundation of the world, when they see the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.; Philippians 4:3 And I urge you also, true companion, help these women who labored with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life.

6.   New born ones because its the book of Life Revelation 20:15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.

7.   Blood bought ones because its the book of the lamb that was slain Revelation 21:27 But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

8.   Glorified ones for they enter the Heavenly City  Revelation 21:27 But there shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. [6]


In the Word of God only Jerusalem (822 times NKJV; 811 times KJV) is mentioned more often than the city of Babylon (295 times NKJV; 286 times KJV). Although Babylon is used both figuratively and literally in the Bible, it most likely is used for the world system of religion [Satan’s Counterfeit Church of the Earth Dwellers, see v.8] here in Revelation 17.

Satan’s church has always had the same elements permeating its beliefs. Remember our study of the origin of 5 of the 8 characteristics of Satan’s church in Romans 1:18-32?

1.      V.21= Pantheism

2.      v.23= Polytheism

3.      v.23= Idolatry

4.      .v.25= Humanism

5.      v.25= Evolution

Remember the key word for Satan’s system is counterfeit. Satan: Instead of Christ. In this vivid chapter we meet four characters:

A Woman who is “on the waters’ v. 1 (touching all the world); with “blasphemous names” v. 3 (these are names of God that are falsely taken and used for humans and idols);  who is ornate in dress v. 4 (this is the external regalia of religious pomp);  who is opposed to God v. 6 (this is doctrinal opposition to the gospel of imputed grace); she has been served by the rulers of the earth  v. 7 (this is the political and religious partnership throughout the ages to serve each of their own ambitions as in Hitler and Rome, Constantine and Christianity, Nebuchadnezzar and the image of himself to be worshipped, etc.); a woman with universal influence v. 9 (this speaks of the global influence of religion, Mary worship, female deities, Gaia, mother-son religions, etc.); she was ruling peoples v. 15 (Rome in particular and religion in general has caused more absolutism in world history than nearly any other institution);  she finally gets destroyed v. 16 (when Satan’s one world church is in place he takes over and the veneer of Christianity is rubbed off to reveal unabashed Satanism);  and she is a great city v. 18 (this can only be Rome the most enduring city of the world with three thousand years of continuous history, the only city that ever ruled most of the world and the only city that presently does religiously).

A Beast scarlet with 7 heads and 10 horns v. 3 (this is Satan’s political system of world kingdoms and the 7 heads refers to 7 historical kingdoms: Sumeria, Egypt, Assyria, Babylonia, Medo-Persia, Greece and Rome.[7] The seven heads represent seven mountains (Rev. 17:9); and since Rome was built on seven hills, this must be a veiled reference to that powerful city (see Rev. 17:18). It would be a most meaningful allusion in John’s day! The ten horns represent ten kingdoms (Dan. 7:24; Rev. 17:12);  who carries the woman v. 7 (It appears that “the beast” will head a “United States of Europe,” a revived Roman Empire, before taking over as world dictator. All nations will no doubt admire and thank him for the “peace” he has achieved, little realizing the sorrow and destruction he will bring to the world.);  who is Satanic v. 8 (remember the antichrist rises out of the abyss in Revelation 13); the beast is the final ruler on earth v. 11 (remember the Roman Empire never ended it just broke up into Britain, France, Germany, Turkey, Northern Africa and so on. The Coming World Leader–commonly known as the Antichrist –has 33 titles in the Old Testament and 13 in the New Testament. One of these, The Prince That Shall Come, comes from Daniel  9:26-27 in which the people of the Prince that shall come would destroy the city and the sanctuary. The fulfillment occurred in history when the Roman legions under Titus Vespasian destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple in 70 AD.  This reflexive reference to the Romans in Daniel 9:26 is one of several reasons why most Bible scholars view the future Prince that shall come as a Roman, or European.); of course though outwardly all-conquering the beast is limited v. 12; heading toward a world united v. 13; and as described this beast is very destructive v. 16.

Seven Heads as already we learned these seven mountains v. 9 (the Seven Hills of Rome: the Palatine, Aventine, Caelian, Capitoline, Esquiline, Quirinal and Viminal Hills); and the seven kings v. 10 (this could be the seven world empires or the seven emperors of Rome)

Ten Horns:  these are kings not ruling yet v.12 (these are rulers in the world at the time of these events.

Rome’s Non-Biblical Doctrines

  • Bible Reading: Innocent 111; Gregory IX; Clement XI; Leo XII, Pius VHI, Gregory XVI and Pius IX all condemned reading the Bible and Bible societies.
  • Tolerance: Clement VIII, Innocent X, Leo XII, Pius VIII, Pius IX, Leo XIII, all condemned, rejected, annulled and protested religious free- dom. They cry ‘tolerance” only in countries where they are in the minority. They have fought religious freedom at every step.
  • Indulgences (and the doctrine of purgatory): Key source of revenue. Pope Sixtus IV (1476) was the first to apply them to souls already in Purgatory. Even retailed. In 1517, John Tetzel came to Germany selling certificates, signed by the Pope, offering pardon of all sins to buyers without confession, repentance, or absolution by the priest.
  • The Vatican has consistently and viciously opposed every democratic advance from absolute monarchies (which she aspired to control) toward government by the people. This began with the Magna Carta in England (June 15, 1215), ‘The Mother of European Constitutions,” which was denounced immediately by Pope Innocent III (1198-1216), and encouraged King John with foreign mercenaries to fight the barons, bringing great destruction to the country. Sub- sequent popes did all in their power to help John’s successor, Henry 111, overturn the Magna Carta. (Salaries to the numerous imported Italian priests were 3X the crown’s annual revenue!)

The Pope Begs Forgiveness[8]!

One of the most significant events in 500 years of church history occurred on March 29, 1994: a joint declaration, “Evangelicals and Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the Third Millennium,” was signed between the Vatican and many prominent evangelical leaders, with the apparent reconciliation of their theological differences. The Reformation a misunderstanding?

It certainly seemed that the compromise of the Gospel lay at the heart of this agreement. The Gospel has not changed. Were the many centuries of martyrs tortured to death over the doctrine of salvation by faith, the inerrancy of the Word of God, and the dramatic tenets of the Reformation all in vain? Were the millions who died for their faith simply victims of a gigantic misunderstanding? So it would seem.

A Woman Rides the Beast

This joint declaration led to a landmark book by Dave Hunt, A Woman Rides the Beast, (which, if you haven’t discovered it, is “must reading”). He carefully chronicles (and documents) the amazing story of the history of the Medieval Church, the true origins of the Roman Catholic Church and, most significantly, its posture today and its clear destiny in prophecy.

To put this into perspective, one needs to be aware of the bloody religious history of the struggle for power in the Roman Church. It should be borne in mind that one Pope (Innocent III), in just one day, murdered more Christians than all the Roman Caesars put together.

What is the Book of Life?

  • Is there a warning here that a true believer might lose his salvation? I don’t think so. It would appear that God’s “Book of Life” contains the names of all the living, the wicked as well as the righteous (Ps. 69:28).Revelation 13:8 and 17:8 suggest that the names of the saved are written in the book from the foundation of the world—that is, before they had done anything good or bad. By God’s grace, they have been chosen in Christ before the beginning of time (Eph. 1:4; see also Matt. 25:34).
  • Jesus told His disciples to rejoice because their names were “written in heaven” (Luke 10:20). The Greek verb is in the perfect tense, which means it can be translated (as Kenneth Wuest does in his Expanded Translation), “your names have been written in heaven and are on permanent record up there.”  It is not likely that Jesus would contradict Himself in this important matter!
  • If the names of believers (the elect) are written from the foundation of the world, and if God knows all things, why would He enter the name of somebody who would one day fall and have to be removed from the book? We are enrolled in heaven because we have been born again (Heb. 12:23), and no matter how disobedient a child may be, he or she cannot be “unborn.”
  • As unbelievers die, their names are removed from the book; thus, at the final judgment, the book contains only the names of believers (Revelation 20:12-15). It then becomes “the Lamb’s Book of Life” (Revelation 21:27), because only those saved by the Lord Jesus have their names in it. All the others have been blotted out, something God would never do for any true child of God (see Ex. 32:32; Rom. 9:3). It is a book of life, and lost sinners are dead (Eph. 2:1).
  • The warning here is that we not grow comfortable in our churches, lest we find ourselves slowly dying. The encouragement is that no church is beyond hope as long as there is a remnant in it, willing to strengthen the things that remain.[9]

[1] See Steadman, p. 314-5.

[2] See Hunt newsletter Dali, Cardinal quote.

[3] Dave’s brief summary can hardly do justice to his landmark book, A Woman Rides the Beast, Harvest House, Eugene OR, 1994. We feel this is a ‘must read’ for the serious Christian.

[4] Ray Steadman  (287-97) says this chapter gives ten clues about the identity of the woman:

[5] Wilmington’s Guide to the Bible.

1 J.  Dwight Pentecost, Prophecy for Today, p. 133.

[6] Erich Sauer, The Triumph of the Crucified, Grand Rapids:Eerdmans, 1966, p. 68.

[7] See Morris, p. 237.

[8] This article by Chuck Missler  was found on the internet at khouse.org

[9] Wiersbe, Warren W., The Bible Exposition Commentary, (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books) 1997.

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