Tag Archives: diaspora

JOHN’S “MANY WATERS”: ROME OR JERUSALEM? (2)

PMW 2019-076 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

This is the second and final part of a brief series arguing that the “many waters” of Rev. 17:1, 15 refer to Jerusalem’s influence over the diaspora Jews, many of whom were proselyte from the nations.

My second observation regarding the Babylonian-harlot’s sitting on many waters represents Jerusalem’s political influence exercised by means of the diaspora — particularly against Christians —- which is exerted throughout the empire and among the “peoples and multitudes and nations and tongues” (17:15).

Remembering the Jewish danger to Christians (Rev. 2:9; 3:9; cp. Acts 4:3; 5:18; 8:3; 9:2; 12:4; 18:6; 22:4; 24:27; 26:10; Rom 15:31; 2 Cor. 11:24; 1 Thess. 2:14-17; Heb. 10:33-34) and the role of the martyrs in Rev (Rev. 6:9-10; see also: Rev 1:9; 2:9-10; 3:9-10; 11:7-8, 11-13, 18; 12:10; 13:10; 14:11-13; 16:5-6; 17:6; 18:20, 24; 19:2; 20:4, 6), this is a quite significant implication of John’s image. After all, we discover “the common reflection of Jewish opposition in the NT writings” (Rick Van de Water, “Reconsidering the Beast from the Sea (Rev 13.1),” 248). Continue reading

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JOHN’S “MANY WATERS”: ROME OR JERUSALEM? (1)

PMW 2019-075 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

In my 9/5/19 post regarding Babylon as an image of Jerusalem in Revelation, Fred V. Squillante responded:

“Revelation 17:1 says that the woman sits on many waters. Verse 15 says The waters where the harlot sits are peoples and multitudes and nations and tongues. The woman is sitting on the beast (many waters). This can only mean the Roman Empire.”

Rev. 17:1 and 15 rare the two texts in question, and they read:

Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and spoke with me, saying, “Come here, I will show you the judgment of the great harlot who sits on many waters” (v. 1).

And he said to me, “The waters which you saw where the harlot sits, are peoples and multitudes and nations and tongues” (v. 15).

This is a frequent challenge brought against the Babylon=Jerusalem interpretation. And it certainly offers a reasonable interpretation. In fact, it is a key argument in favor of the identity of the harlot as Rome among standard preterists (as opposed to my Redemptive-historical preterism, which sees the bulk of Revelation as directed against Jerusalem and Israel). Thus, it deserves a response. I will provide a two part response, beginning in this posting and continuing in the next. Continue reading