"I have likened the daughter of Zion to a comely and delicate woman." (Jeremiah 6:2) -- In the Bible record, God's people, His church, is referred
to as Zion 152 times. There are 28 of these times that the Scriptures use the terms "daughter of Zion." In Lamentations 2:10, it refers to the
"elders of the daughter of Zion," showing plainly that it is not a literal woman, but God's church being spoken of. There are 13 times in which the
people of God are referred to as the "bride" of Christ. In the parable of the ten virgins, God's Word shows us a picture of Christ and His followers.
You will remember that five of them were wise virgins and five of them were foolish virgins. Both the true Christians and the false Christians are
pictured as virgins, or unmarried women. It is upon this principle that we begin our study of "Two Women." A woman in Bible prophecy,
represents a church.
1. What does John see in his vision? Revelation 12:1
2. What condition is the woman in? Revelation 12:2 (first part)
3. What was special about the man child that she brought forth? Revelation 12:5
The man child was Jesus! He is the only ruler to ascend into heaven.
4. What are we told about the woman at the time of Jesus' birth? Revelation 12:2 (last part)
How wonderful the detail of the Bible prophecy is! She was pained to be delivered because at the time of Christ's birth, the church was in widespread apostasy and ultimately the majority of God's people rejected Jesus as the Messiah.
5. What did the dragon intend to do to the man child as soon as He was born? Revelation 12:4
Take a few minutes to read the story of how Satan, working through the Roman king Herod, attempted to destroy Jesus just
after He was born. (Matthew 2)
6. What does the woman do, shortly after the ascension of Jesus into heaven? Revelation 12:6
7. How long does the church hide in the wilderness? Revelation 12:6
You should remember, we briefly discussed this same period of time in the prophecies of Daniel. This same period is expressed as 42 months, three and a half years, and now 1260 days. Again this speaks of the period of Papal rule from 538 AD to 1798 AD, and is exactly 1260 years. This is the specified time at a "day for a year."(See lesson number six entitled: "70 Weeks";).
8. What two things are we told about the outcome of this great persecution? Revelation 12:11
a. "they______________________him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony;"
b. "and they____________________ not their _________________________ unto the death."
We have already discussed the millions of true Christians who were martyred during the Pagan and Papal Roman rule. Verse 11 shows us the other side, because the historical account of these killings confirms that many were burnt at the stake, while singing hymns of praise to the Lord. Instead of discouraging the faithful followers of God, history tells us that the blood of the martyrs, was like seed, and that where one was killed for the gospel, a hundred more would spring up in his place. Truly, "they loved not their lives unto the death!"
9. After being unsuccessful at destroying God's true people, what does Satan do next? Revelation 12:15
10. What does water represent in Bible prophecy? Revelation 17:15
The flood that Satan brought against God's true people, was a flood of people. When he saw that he could not destroy the true Christians by killing them, he tried to dilute them by bringing in so many false Christians into the church. Remember the real struggle is between truth and error.
11. Who came to the help of the woman or church? Revelation 12:16
Remember in lesson number 4, we discussed that if the water represents peoples, then the contrasting figure of the earth would represent the virtually uninhabited "New World."During the hottest persecutions of the Protestant Reformation, Protestant America would indeed "swallow up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth."
13. What name was written on her forehead? Revelation 17:5
In chapter 12, a pure woman represents the pure church. Here, under the figure of a prostitute, God will represent to us the counterfeit church of Satan's making.
14. What two characteristics are we given about this woman? Revelation 17:2
a. "the kings of the earth have committed_______________,"
b. "the inhabitants of earth have been made________________with the_________________of her fornication."
Remember that the prophecy is speaking in a spiritual sense. Literally, fornication has to do with the unfaithfulness of a woman to her husband, so spiritually, fornication has to do with unfaithfulness to God and His truth. To be made drunk with the wine of her fornication, means to be deceived about her doctrines. Many a drunkard does outrageous things while under the influence, that he would never do while sober! May God help us all to be sober in these last days.
15. What is there about this woman's name that tells us about other unfaithful churches? Revelation 17:5 "THE MOTHER OF ______________________________"
A harlot is an unfaithful woman. Mystery, Babylon the great is an unfaithful church. She is also the mother of harlots. This tells of other churches which follow after the doctrines of the "mother church!" The Catholic church claims herself to be the "Mother Church" and whether we admit it or not, if we follow her counterfeit doctrines instead of the truth of God's Word, we are indeed following in the mothers' footsteps. We may call our churches by another name, but when we teach Catholic doctrine, we make ourselves daughters of the great whore!
16. Upon what does the woman sit? Revelation 17:3
"a_________________coloured beast,... having seven______________and ten ___________."
17. What do the seven heads represent? Revelation 17:9
Even today, the city of Rome is known as the "city of seven hills."
18. What do the ten horns represent? Revelation 17:12
These ten kings are the ten kingdoms of Europe in which the Papacy sits.
19. How else is the woman identified? Revelation 17:18
"the woman which thou sawest is that great___________________________which reigneth over the____________________ of the earth."
There is only one great city which fits this description; Vatican City. There has never been another city which has so mysteriously held dominion over all the varied kingdoms of the earth, often without benefit of military power.
20. As chapter eighteen begins, an angel appears with a powerful message to lighten the whole earth. What does he say? Revelation 18:2
21. In Revelation 14:8 we find this angels message recorded also. What does the Bible label this message as? Revelation 14:6
22. What does this everlasting gospel message tell us about Babylon? Revelation 14:8
23. What else does the angel say? Revelation 18:4
The "everlasting gospel" of Jesus Christ includes the call to come out of Babylon! Once we know what is right, God expects us to live the truth that we have learned. He is calling all of His people to come out of the churches that teach the deadly errors that promote the beast; the image to the beast; and the mark of the beast.
24. How did Jesus explain this important call? John 10:16
25. What is the final end of the harlot, Babylon? Revelation 18:21
The rest of chapter 18 is devoted to telling what will be done unto Babylon, but the bottom line to the story is its utter destruction. While the holy city, New Jerusalem, will last through all eternity, the wicked city of Babylon will be judged, punished, and destroyed.
As stated earlier, the book of Revelation contains quite a list of contrasts. Revelation chapter 12 pictures for us a pure woman. Called the remnant, she is faithful to God and His truth. She keeps the ten commandments and has faith in Jesus Christ. She follows the Lamb whithersoever He goes. She spreads the light of the gospel over all the world to save as many as will be saved. Last, but not least, she spends eternity with Jesus inside the holy city, New Jerusalem, and feeds from the tree of life.
The contrast in Revelation chapter 17 pictures a vile woman. She is called Babylon, a term meaning confusion, and she is unfaithful to God and the truth. She holds the tradition of men above the law of God and worships the beast. She wanders after the pagan religion of the beast. She causes gross darkness over the whole world in her attempt to accuse the brethren and condemn the world. Her final end is utter destruction in the fires of hell.
Friend, every person who lives on the earth in these last days will be a member of one of these two churches. But the decision is not made by a mere profession of one or the other; no, the church you belong to will be decided by your life; every aspect of your life!
"Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they
may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city." -- (Revelation 22:14)