Under verse 16, our dear brother says, "The ten horns (Roman kings) shall hate the harlot. This should be proof enough that the harlot is Jerusalem and not Rome. The Roman kings would not be likely to hate their capital city." This is another example of perverting the Scriptures. The ten horns which are ten kings which hate the harlot are not Roman emperors, (Kings). Verse 10 says there are seven kings (not 10). These seven kings are emperors. Five of these kings are fallen, i.e. dead. The sixth one, our dear brother told us was Nero. The seventh one has not yet come, and when he is come "he must continue a short space." Even though there are seven, there are actually eight (V. 11). The eighth one is of the seven, which means two of them are counted as one. There were actually 8 kings, but two of them are counted as one, which explains the statement "There are seven kings." According to the Nero redivivus myth, Nero was reincarnated in Domitian, counting the two as one. They are counted as one, because both of them persecuted Christians. "The ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast" (Rev. 17:12). These are kings like the Herod's who ruled in Palestine. These are the kings who hated Rome, because they wanted to be in full control and not have to answer to Rome. This is the reason they hated the harlot. I believe I have answered all of his material, that he gives under Chapter 17. I have answered it throughout this book. Some of it more than once.
Reasons Why The Harlot Is The City Of Rome
And Not The City Of Jerusalem.
1. She sits on many waters (Rev. 17:1). The waters are "Peoples, multitudes, nations, and tongues" (Rev. 17:15). This fits Rome better than it fits Jerusalem.
2. The kings of the earth committed fornication with her (Rev.17:2). Fornication here refers to idolatry. Even though Jerusalem had worshiped idols in the past, such as Baal, etc. there is nothing in the New Testament to indicate they worshiped idols prior to the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.
3. The harlot was sitting upon a scarlet colored beast (Rev. 2:3). This beast had seven heads and ten horns (Rev. 2:3), which shows it is the Sea beast of (Rev.13:1), which had seven heads and ten horns. This beast was in Rome, which means the woman riding the beast was in Rome, and was thus the city of Rome and not Jerusalem.
4. This woman had on her forehead Mystery, Babylon the great, the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth (Rev.17:5). Rome was known in history as the city to which the epithet of Babylon was applied (The Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire, by Edward Gibbons, P. 405).
5. The woman was carried by the "beast that had seven heads and ten horns." This is the beast "that was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition" (Rev. 17:7, 8.) The city of Rome rode upon the back of the Roman emperors, not Jerusalem.
6. The woman sits on seven mountains where there were seven kings, five of which had fallen, one is, and the seventh has not yet come (Rev. 17:9, 10). There may have also been seven mountains in Jerusalem, but Jerusalem had no king. Rome is the city that had the seven Kings.
7. The harlot is "that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth" (Rev. 17:18). Jerusalem was reigning over no one in the years prior to A.D. Rome was ruling over the world, including all kings of the earth. The Herod's answered to Rome.
8. Rome falling would affect world trade more than the fall of Jerusalem would. Our dear brother tells us that neither Rome nor Jerusalem was located on the sea shore. When he made that statement, he knew Rome was closer to the sea than Jerusalem was. He also knew Jerusalem was high on a mountain top. I am sure Jerusalem was a great trade center, and that her fall would affect the shipping industry. However, he knows, and all of us know, that the fall of Rome would hurt the shipping industry more than the fall of Jerusalem!
9. All nations had drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication (Rev. 18:3). There is no proof that Jerusalem from the time of Christ until A. D. 70 worshiped idols.
10. The kings of the earth have committed fornication with her. This is spiritual fornication, because it was committed with a city called a woman. There is no proof Jerusalem from the time of Christ until A.D. 70 worshiped idols.
Our beloved brother contends that the harlot is the city of Jerusalem. He thinks Chapter 18 is "the final doom of Jerusalem." We will consider what he has to say. Our dear brother tells us the angel came down from heaven, and the earth was "lighted with his glory", and the light was the gospel of Christ. Therefore, according to him, we have an angel coming from heaven to preach the gospel of Christ. Yet Paul said "we have this treasure in earthen vessels" (2 Cor. 4:7). But this would be no problem for our brother. He would probably make the angel some person, and he could probably tell you who the person is. If he can make a "mighty angel" Jesus Christ, then he can make an angel whomever he wants to. He says, at the top of Page 130, of his book, "Jerusalem was listed as the fourth largest city in the Roman world." This would mean that business would suffer, if the city was destroyed. Yes, but not like it would if the number one city fell! It's not just the merchants in Palestine. Neither is it the ship masters of Palestine. It is "every ship master, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea" (Rev. 18:17). My dear brother you know this fits Rome, better than it does Jerusalem.
In the last paragraph on P. 133, of his book he says, "No other event in history, nor any event which could possibly occur in the future, could provide a more perfect fulfillment for these symbols, than did the persecution of the Church by Judaism and the judgment of God which He brought upon the Jews by the hand of Nero and the Romans." Yet this destruction took place in 70 A.D., and Nero died in A.D. 68. Our brother has even admitted this, as we noted earlier. Vespasian, was the emperor when Jerusalem was destroyed in A.D. 70. Titus, the son of Vespasian, was the General of the army under Vespasian, not Nero.
In verses one through six there is a "great multitude" in heaven (American Standard Version, and New American Standard version) praising God for the fall of the great harlot. The King James version says, "much people." Possibly, the use of the word "people", in the King James Version, caused my dear brother to think it was the "entire church", praising God, for the fall of the harlot. The context shows heaven is not symbolic of the church, in this passage. In this passage heaven is just that, heaven. The twenty four elders are in heaven, along with the four living creatures (beasts), before the throne worshiping God who is in heaven. There is not one member of the church in this group.
In verse seven, the passage says "the marriage of the lamb is come and his wife hath made herself ready." This is the first time, in this chapter, the church has been mentioned. The bride made herself ready on earth. She will be presented to Christ, in heaven. Down here she is pictured, as my brother says, as being espoused, or engaged to Christ (2 Cor. 11:2). Of course he thinks that was before the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. But contrary to his teaching, the wedding will not take place until we get to heaven, when he will "present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish" (Eph. 5:27). The church, as the bride of Christ, was not presented to Christ immediately following the destruction of Jerusalem as my dear brother, and Max King and his followers falsely teach. Under verse 9, our dear brother says, "Every person who hears the preaching of the gospel and responds by repenting of their sins, confessing their faith in Christ and being baptized with Christ in baptism is at that point married to Christ and receives all the blessings of such an arrangement." Of course he believes this is the case following the destruction of Jerusalem. However, he agrees with Max King that before the destruction of Jerusalem they were only espoused, or engaged to Christ.
Our dear brother says, "Jerusalem (the great harlot city) has fallen. The beast and false prophet have been cast into the bottomless pit (oblivion). Now the old dragon who instigated all the problems for Christ and His church is ready to be put out of the way, sent back to where he came from, in total defeat. By this time, God's complete revelation has been given, i.e., ‘that which is perfect' in I Corinthians 13:10"). The word oblivion means, "1. A forgetting or having forgotten; forgetfulness 2. the condition or fact of being forgotten 3. official overlooking of offenses; pardon" (Webster's New World Dictionary). In view of the fact, our dear brother says the beast and false prophet are in oblivion, (the bottomless pit); which definition do you suppose he would have us to use? Does being in the bottomless pit mean we have simply forgotten them, or forgetfulness has taken hold on them? Or does it mean they are simply in a condition where we have forgotten them, while they are in the bottomless pit? Or does it mean God has overlooked their terrible sins and has pardoned them? From what I have read of the Max King doctrine, I do not find any proof many of them believe in hell, i.e. eternal punishment. Statements like this causes me to wonder if my dear brother believes there is any punishment in that place where the king of Babylon went, when he died (Isa. 14). Does he believe the rich man was punished when he died and went to the Hadean world (Lk. 16)? He says, here on this page, page number 141 in his book, that the old dragon, which is the devil, was the "great star", in Rev. 9, which had the key to the bottomless pit and loosed all the locust into the earth. However, back on page 65, he said some political ruler like Lucifer, the king of Babylon, who was a servant of Satan was the one, who bit the dust, who had the key to the bottomless pit. Now, an angel comes down from heaven with the key to the bottomless pit. Our brother tells us that Christ is that angel who took the key away from the devil, or was it a political ruler who lost his power. I wish our brother would make up his mind! How he knows this, we will never know, the word of God certainly didn't tell us! Our dear brother is good at making the Bible say whatever he wants it to say! According to him, Jesus bound the devil and chained him "with the gospel" in the bottomless pit. Now, our dear brother has the beast, the false prophet, and Satan all in the bottomless pit, what he calls (oblivion). According to him, they are all forgotten, or possibly pardoned!! But now we read on in Revelation 20 to verse 10 , where John said, "The devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are." Apparently he believe the bottomless pit and the lake of fire and brimstone is one and the same place. But this gets him into trouble! He has Jesus taking the key to the "bottomless pit" which is, according to him, "the lake of fire and brimstone." Thus Jesus chained the devil in the bottomless pit which is, according to our brother, the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, at the beginning of the thousand years (Rev. 20:2). When the thousand years were over, "expired", Satan was loosed out of the place he was chained which, according to our brother was "the bottomless pit" which is "the lake of fire and brimstone." When Satan was loosed from his chain, he went "out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever" (Rev. 20:8-10). Our dear brother says the passage about being loosed for a little season "is a difficult one" (Bottom of Page 141). On the next page, he said the short time "was probably three and one half years, the time just prior to the final destruction of Jerusalem while the church was in hiding, for safety." This is interesting. "The church was in hiding, for safety." In spite of this, the Devil found the church, apparently in the "holy city." The Devil, along with nations from the four quarters of the earth, "Compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city." Fire then came down from heaven and devoured Satan and the nations from the four quarters of the earth. The devil then, that deceived all these nations, was cast back into "the lake of fire and brimstone", which is the bottomless pit (according to our brother) where he had previously been bound for one thousand years. There is nothing said about the devil being tormented, while he was chained, in the bottomless pit. Now that he is cast into the "lake of fire and brimstone" he is said to be "tormented forever and ever" (Rev. 20:10). I wonder if our dear brother believes the lake of fire and brimstone is hell? If so, I wonder if he believes the bottomless pit is hell, too? If so, he must believe Nebudchadnezzar went to hell the day he died, and is still there; thus will not be resurrected in the last day, and judged in the last day, and then cast into "the lake that burns with fire and brimstone." I am beginning to wonder if my dear brother believes in an eternal hell!
On page 142 he said, "After this last attempt to destroy the Church the Devil is cast into oblivion along with the beast and false prophet forever and ever." Again, he calls this place oblivion. According to our dear brother, the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast, false prophet, and Satan is "tormented day and night forever and ever" (Rev. 20:10) is oblivion. Please go back to pages 85 and 86 of this book and notice Webster's definition of oblivion. Does our dear brother take all three definitions of the word, or just one, or two of the definitions? Does he take the first one and believe that the Devil is forgetful, and has forgotten about us and his torment? Or does he take the second definition and tell us that we have all forgotten him? Or will he take the third definition and believe God is overlooking his offenses and has pardoned him?? The truth of the matter is the judgment of the beast, false prophet, and Satan took place when Mystery Babylon The Great, The Mother Of Harlots was destroyed, which I believe was Rome. However, in the background, there is the final judgment day, which is yet to come, when all of us will be judged by Jesus Christ by the words which Jesus has spoken (Jno. 12:48).
Under verse two, our dear brother says old Jerusalem is the harlot Babylon, or Judaism which had fallen. He then says new Jerusalem coming out of heaven is the church. He attempts to prove this by listing as proof Gal. 4:26; Eph. 5:23-33 and Hebrews 12:22ff. Our dear brother is wresting these Scriptures, for they do not say what he claims they say. In Paul's allegory in Gal. 4:21-31 he teaches there were two women, Hagar and Sarah. He says these two women are the two covenants (Gal. 5:23, 24). Hagar, is the Old Covenant and was Mt. Sinai in Arabia where the Old Covenant began. Hagar answered to Jerusalem "which now is", or Old Jerusalem. She is in bondage with her children who are those who keep the law of Moses. Sarah is the New Covenant and answers to Jerusalem which is from above, or New Jerusalem. Her children are free. Christians who are the children of the New Testament, i.e. Sarah, are free. The church, then, is not Jerusalem which is above, but the children of Sarah, the New Covenant, which is Jerusalem which is from above. Eph 5:23-33 pictures the church as the bride of Christ, not Jerusalem which is from above, the New Testament, which is the mother of us all. Our dear brother also perverts Heb. 12:22ff. The Hebrew writer is drawing a contrast between the Mt. Zion that we have come to and Mt. Sinai to which the Jews came. Mt. Sinai was a mountain that could be touched (Heb. 12:18). It was a mountain that was shaken with the voice of God (Heb. 12:26, 27).
Our dear brother said, "The new heaven (system of religion) was the church. The new earth (place of religion) was no longer limited to Jerusalem and the Jews, but now includes the whole world with every creature under the sun. (Go into all the world, to every creature is the message of Mark 16:15)." From this statement, our dear brother would have us to believe that Jerusalem had to be destroyed in 70 A.D. before the Apostles could go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He would have us believe that the place of religion was limited to Jerusalem and the Jews up until Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 A.D. Jesus told the apostles to go into all the world in Mk. 16:15. He did not intend for them to wait until Jerusalem was destroyed before they carried out the great commission. In fact Jesus said the gospel would be preached in all the world before Jerusalem was destroyed (Mt. 24:14).
Under verse 4, our dear brother says, "A similar picture is given by God in Isaiah 65:17-19 where God is drawing a contrast between the pain and agony of being in Babylonian bondage and being freed to go back to their homeland and living in peace." I agree with my brother to some degree on this. The prophet Isaiah does record the word of God where he would create new heavens and earth and also where He would create Jerusalem, wiping away tears, etc. Ancient Babylon was destroyed by God sending the Medes to destroy the city. When God brought the children of Israel back to Jerusalem, he created Jerusalem and his people had tears wiped away from their eyes. The same thing happens in the Book of Revelation. Mystery Babylon the great falls, just as ancient Babylon fell. Ancient Babylon persecuted God's people. Mystery Babylon the great also persecuted God's people. When Mystery Babylon the great was destroyed, God created Jerusalem again and wiped away tears from the eyes of Christians who had been suffering persecution. However, in the Book of Revelation, Mystery Babylon the great is Rome and not Jerusalem.
Under his comments on verses 18 and 19 of this chapter, he says, "This most sober warning in all of God's Word is that we do not add or subtract from what it says. The idea that we are free to do our own thing is a dangerous philosophy in any area of life. It is disastrous when it comes to misusing God's Word." My dear brother, I want to say amen. I have pointed out many times where you have perverted and twisted the Scriptures in your book. I sincerely hope you will repent and correct the many times you misused God's word. I certainly do not believe you intended to do so. Others, whom you have confidence in, were guilty of the perversions. You just copied them.
I agree with my brother that Chapters 20-22 deal with the judgment of Mystery Babylon The Great, and creating a place where there is no tears, and a place of rejoicing for those Christians who were so severely persecuted. However, in the back ground is a picture of the final judgment day, when all nations will stand before Christ (Mt. 25:31-43) to be judged. Also, in the back ground, is heaven itself with the tree of life, etc. described in chapters 21 and 22. I agree that the Book of Revelation deals with the destruction of Mystery Babylon, the Great. However, I believe that city to be Rome and not Jerusalem.
Our dear brother, and those who agree with him, switch gears in the middle of the Book of Revelation. Or, it might be more correct to say, they try to run their vehicle in two gears at the same time. In the first half of the book, they teach Jesus Christ is coming with the Sea beast (Nero) to fight the Jewish leaders in the city of Jerusalem; which results in the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 A.D. Thus, Jesus Christ, as an ally with Nero, is fighting with Nero against the wicked Jews which results in the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in agreement with Mt. 24 in 70 A.D. In the second half of the book, however, Jesus Christ, on the white horse (Rev. 19) is fighting against the Sea beast (Nero) and the land beast (the Jewish leaders) in the battle of Armageddon! In the first half of the book Jesus Christ and the Sea beast are fighting on the same side, against the city of Jerusalem. In the second half of the book Jesus Christ and the Sea beast are enemies fighting against each other, and yet all of the book has to do with the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.This is strange indeed. I hope that all readers will observe this thoroughly and carefully.
I hope and pray that all of you who read this book will profit from it, including our dear brother Stidham. Bro. Stidham, I love you dearly. I also love the truth which you so frequently perverted. I hope and pray you will repent.
If you decide to reply to this book, I will be very happy. The more you rub the truth up against error, the brighter the truth will shine, and error becomes more and more ugly.
I am not trying to convince anyone to change their position about dating the Book of Revelation. The lesson for Christians today is the same, whether the book was written in 67 or 68 A.D. about the destruction of Jerusalem; or whether the book was written in 95 or 96 A.D. about the destruction of Rome. We should not push our views to the dividing of churches. We should not push our views to try and get people to line up with us, to where some have felt forced to go some other place to worship. We certainly should not lift passages of Scripture out of their context, pervert them, wrest them, and misapply them; in order to justify our position!!!
If you would like to obtain a copy of our dear brothers book, you may contact him. His address is:
55 Washington Road
Xenia, Ohio 45385
Your Brother In Christ
16334 Evans Rd.
Athens, Al. 35611
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