Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Revelation 17:5

and on her forehead a name was written, a mystery, "BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH."
New American Standard Version

Bible Study Resources

Concordances:
Nave's Topical Bible - Horn;   Idolatry;   Thompson Chain Reference - Babylon;   The Topic Concordance - Empires/world Powers;   Judges;   Torrey's Topical Textbook - Babylon;  
Dictionaries:
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary - Antichrist;   Babylon;   Mystery;   Bridgeway Bible Dictionary - Babylon;   Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology - Mystery;   Peter, First, Theology of;   Charles Buck Theological Dictionary - Church;   Joy;   Order;   Easton Bible Dictionary - Antichrist;   Babylon;   Cutting;   Forehead;   Harlot;   Fausset Bible Dictionary - Achan;   Antichrist;   Babylon, Mystical;   Cuttings;   Forehead;   Lucifer;   Mark, John;   Marriage;   Mystery;   Revelation of John, the;   Holman Bible Dictionary - Abomination, Abomination of Desolation;   Babel;   Babylon, History and Religion of;   Forehead;   Mother;   Prostitution;   Revelation, the Book of;   Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible - Antichrist;   Babylon;   Forehead;   Mystery;   Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament - Abomination ;   Colours;   Family;   Harlot ;   Mystery ;   Peter Epistles of;   Sin (2);   Morrish Bible Dictionary - Babylon the Great ;   Harlot;   Horns;   Mystery;   Prophets, the;   The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary - Babel;   Babylon;   Mother;   People's Dictionary of the Bible - Babylon;   Rome;   Wilson's Dictionary of Bible Types - Babylon;   Forehead;   Harlot;   Mother;   Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary - Mystery;  
Encyclopedias:
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia - Babylon in the New Testament:;   Crime;   Forehead;   Mystery;   Writing;  

Adam Clarke Commentary

And upon her forehead was a name written, Mystery, Babylon the Great, the Mother of Harlots, and Abominations of the Earth - This inscription being written upon her forehead is intended to show that she is not ashamed of her doctrines, but publicly professes and glories in them before the nations: she has indeed a whore's forehead, she has refused to be ashamed. The inscription upon her forehead is exactly the portraiture of the Latin Church. This Church is, as Bishop Newton well expresses it, A Mystery of iniquity. This woman is also called Babylon the Great; she is the exact antitype of the ancient Babylon in her idolatry and cruelty, but the ancient city called Babylon is only a drawing of her in miniature. This is indeed Babylon The Great. "She affects the style and title of our Holy Mother, the Church; but she is, in truth, the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth."

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Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/revelation-17.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

And upon her forehead - In a circlet around her forehead. That is, it was made prominent and public, as if written on the forehead in blazing capitals. In Revelation 13:1 it is said that “the name of blasphemy” was written on the “heads” of the beast. The meaning in both places is substantially the same, that it was prominent, and unmistakable. See the notes on that verse. Compare the note on Revelation 14:1.

Was a name written - A title, or something that would properly indicate her character.

Mystery - It is proper to remark that there is nothing in the original as written by John, so far as now known, that corresponded with what is implied in placing this inscription in capital letters; and the same remark may be made of the “title” or inscription that was placed over the head of the Saviour on the cross, Matthew 27:37; Mark 15:26; Luke 23:38; John 19:19. Our translators have adopted this form, apparently for the sole purpose of denoting that it was an inscription or title. On the meaning of the word “mystery,” see the notes on 1 Corinthians 2:7. Compare the notes on 1 Timothy 3:16. Here it seems to be used to denote that there was something hidden, obscure, or enigmatical, under the title adopted; that is, the word “Babylon,” and the word “mother,” were symbolical. Our translators have printed and pointed the word “mystery” as if it were part of the inscription. It would probably be better to regard it as referring to the inscription, thus: “a name was written - a mysterious name, to wit, Babylon,” etc. Or, “a name was written mysteriously.” According to this, it would mean, not that there was any wonderful “mystery” about the thing itself, whatever might be true on that point, but that the name was enigmatical or symbolical; or that there was something hidden or concealed under the name. It was not to be literally understood.

Babylon the great - papal Rome, the nominal head of the Christian world, as Babylon had been of the pagan world. See the notes on Revelation 14:8.

The mother of harlots -

(a)Of that spiritual apostasy from God which, in the language of the prophets, might be called adultery. See the notes on Revelation 14:8.

(b)The promoter of lewdness by her institutions. See the notes on Revelation 9:21. In both these senses, there never was a more expressive or appropriate title than the one here employed.

And abominations of the earth - Abominable things that prevail on the earth, Revelation 17:4. Compare the notes on Revelation 9:20-21.

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Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/revelation-17.html. 1870.

Coffman Commentaries on the Bible

and upon her forehead a name written, MYSTERY; BABYLON THE GREAT; THE MOTHER OF THE HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

And upon her head a name written ... In the culture of those times, harlots customarily "wore on their brows labels inscribed with their names; this whore is thus in character."[26]; MYSTERY; BABYLON THE GREAT ... See under Revelation 17:1 for identification of the three Babylons. The comma after MYSTERY should be omitted, as her name is not BABYLON, but MYSTERY BABYLON. Just as the pagan empire was Babylon, answering to the Old Testament type, this woman is also Babylon in a different and extended sense. She is MYSTERY BABYLON, the essential quality of the mystery is that "the worldly portion of the church, though nominally Christian, is in reality identical with the world and is openly antagonistic to God."[27] "Mystery is part of the name; it is not literal; something lies behind which will be made manifest in due time."[28]

THE MOTHER OF THE HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH ... This harlot sets a religious style that will be copied throughout the ages. Many have interpreted this as a reference to apostate Protestant churches; and, while true enough, this by no means exhausts the interpretation.

[26] Leon Morris, op. cit., p. 206.

[27] A. Plummer, op. cit., p. 415.

[28] W. Boyd Carpenter, op. cit., p. 611.

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Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.
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Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Coffman Commentaries on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/revelation-17.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And upon her forehead was a name written,.... As the high priest had on his mitre upon his forehead written, holiness to the Lord, Exodus 28:36 only a different inscription from that; the allusion is thought to be to harlots, who not only used to put their names over their doors, but some of them upon their foreheads, that all might know who they were; of which Mr. Daubuz has given proofs out of Seneca, Martial, Juvenal, and Petronius; and such might be said to have an whore's forehead indeed: and this is expressive of the openness and impudence of the church of Rome, in her idolatrous worship; she openly declares it, and pleads for it, and invites and ensnares persons to join with her in it: the name follows,

mystery, Babylon the great, the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth; her name is "mystery"; not the mystery of godliness, that she dislikes and opposes, but the mystery of iniquity; which is the name antichrist went by in the Apostle Paul's time, when he was but in embryo, 2 Thessalonians 2:7. Some reference may be had to the mystery of the Mass, in which the Papists pretend are the very body and blood of Christ; to their seven sacraments, for wherever almost they find the word mystery, they make a sacrament of that to which it is applied; and to their unwritten traditions, and the sense of the Scriptures, which are locked up in the pope's breast: and it is very remarkable what has been observed by some, that the word "mystery" was formerly upon the frontlet of the pope's mitre, and was removed by Pope Julius the Third, when it was observed that the Protestants made use of this passage of Scripture, and applied it to the Romish antichrist. Joseph ScaligerF12In Scaligeran. affirms, that he saw mitres at Rome with this inscription on them. Though others think that this is not any part of the name, but only signifies that this woman was, in a mysterious or mystical sense, called Babylon, &c. just as the great city is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt, Revelation 11:8 but to me it seems to be a part of the name, as well as what follows, "Babylon the great"; that is, the great city, Revelation 14:8 by which name the church of Rome may well be called, because of the signification of it, confusion, Genesis 11:9 its doctrine and worship being a confused mixture of Paganism, Judaism, and Christianity; and because of the pride and haughtiness of it, its tyranny and cruelty, and its sorceries and idolatry; see Isaiah 14:12.

And the mother of harlots, of all antichristian states and kingdoms; and is different from the heavenly Jerusalem, the Gospel church, which is the mother of true believers, Galatians 4:26 or the "mother of fornications": as some copies read, and the Vulgate Latin and eastern versions render it; that is, the author and encourager of them, as the church of Rome has been; of corporeal fornication, by commanding celibacy, and forbidding marriage to priests, and setting up of brothel houses; and of spiritual fornication or idolatry, everywhere required and encouraged by it: and of "the abominations of the earth"; of abominable doctrines and practices; all manner of wickedness that is to be found in the earth, as murder, adultery, sodomy, perjury, &c. these, with everything that is vile and wicked, are practised and connived at by her.

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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rights Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Gill, John. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/revelation-17.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

7 And upon her forehead [was] a name written, MYSTERY, 8 BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

(7) Deceiving with the title of religion, and public inscription of mystery: which the beast in times past did not bear. {(8)} An exposition: in which John declares what manner of woman this is.
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Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/revelation-17.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

forehead  …  name — as harlots usually had. What a contrast to “HOLINESS TO THE LORD,” inscribed on the miter on the high priest‘s forehead!

mystery — implying a spiritual fact heretofore hidden, and incapable of discovery by mere reason, but now revealed. As the union of Christ and the Church is a “great mystery” (a spiritual truth of momentous interest, once hidden, now revealed, Ephesians 5:31, Ephesians 5:32), so the Church conforming to the world and thereby becoming a harlot is a counter “mystery” (or spiritual truth, symbolically now revealed). As iniquity in the harlot is a leaven working in “mystery,” and therefore called “the mystery of iniquity,” so when she is destroyed, the iniquity heretofore working (comparatively) latently in her, shall be revealed in the man of iniquity, the open embodiment of all previous evil. Contrast the “mystery of God” and “godliness,” Revelation 10:7; 1 Timothy 3:16. It was Rome that crucified Christ; that destroyed Jerusalem and scattered the Jews; that persecuted the early Christians in pagan times, and Protestant Christians in papal times; and probably shall be again restored to its pristine grandeur, such as it had under the Caesars, just before the burning of the harlot and of itself with her. So Hippolytus [On Antichrist] (who lived in the second century), thought. Popery cannot be at one and the same time the “mystery of iniquity,” and the manifested or revealed Antichrist. Probably it will compromise for political power (Revelation 17:3) the portion of Christianity still in its creed, and thus shall prepare the way for Antichrist‘s manifestation. The name Babylon, which in the image, Daniel 2:32, Daniel 2:38, is given to the head, is here given to the harlot, which marks her as being connected with the fourth kingdom, Rome, the last part of the image. Benedict XIII, in his indiction for a jubilee, a.d. 1725, called Rome “the mother of all believers, and the mistress of all churches” (harlots like herself). The correspondence of syllables and accents in Greek is striking; “{(He porne kai to therion}; {(He numphe kai to arnion}.” “The whore and the beast; the Bride and the Lamb.”

of harlotsGreek, “of the harlots and of the abominations.” Not merely Rome, but Christendom as a whole, even as formerly Israel as a whole, has become a harlot. The invisible Church of true believers is hidden and dispersed in the visible Church. The boundary lines which separate harlot and woman are not denominational nor drawn externally, but can only be spiritually discerned. If Rome were the only seat of Babylon, much of the spiritual profit of Revelation would be lost to us; but the harlot “sitteth upon many waters” ()Revelation 17:1), and “ALL nation)s have drunk of the wine of her fornication” (Revelation 17:2; Revelation 18:3; “the earth,” Revelation 19:2). External extensiveness over the whole world and internal conformity to the world - worldliness in extent and contents - is symbolized by the name of the world city, “Babylon.” As the sun shines on all the earth, thus the woman clothed with the sun is to let her light penetrate to the uttermost parts of the earth. But she, in externally Christianizing the world, permits herself to be seduced by the world; thus her universality or catholicity is not that of the Jerusalem which we look for (“the MOTHER of us all,” Revelation 21:2; Isaiah 2:2-4; Galatians 4:26), but that of Babylon, the world-wide but harlot city! (As Babylon was destroyed, and the Jews restored to Jerusalem by Cyrus, so our Cyrus - a Persian name meaning the sun - the Sun of righteousness, shall bring Israel, literal and spiritual, to the holy Jerusalem at His coming. Babylon and Jerusalem are the two opposite poles of the spiritual world). Still, the Romish Church is not only accidentally and as a matter of fact, but in virtue of its very PRINCIPLE, a harlot, the metropolis of whoredom, “the mother of harlots”; whereas the evangelical Protestant Church is, according to her principle and fundamental creed, a chaste woman; the Reformation was a protest of the woman against the harlot. The spirit of the heathen world kingdom Rome had, before the Reformation, changed the Church in the West into a Church-State, Rome; and in the East, into a State-Church, fettered by the world power, having its center in Byzantium; the Roman and Greek churches have thus fallen from the invisible spiritual essence of the Gospel into the elements of the world [Auberlen]. Compare with the “woman” called “Babylon” here, the woman named “wickedness,” or “lawlessness,” “iniquity” (Zechariah 5:7, Zechariah 5:8, Zechariah 5:11), carried to Babylon: compare “the mystery of iniquity” and “the man of sin,” “that wicked one,” literally, “the lawless one” (2 Thessalonians 2:7, 2 Thessalonians 2:8; also Matthew 24:12).

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/revelation-17.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Upon her forehead a name written (επι το μετωπον αυτης ονομα γεγραμμενονepi to metōpon autēs onoma gegrammenon). Roman harlots wore a label with their names on their brows (Seneca, Rhet. I. 2. 7; Juvenal VI. 122f.), and so here. In Revelation 19:16 Christ has a name on his garments and on his thigh, while in Revelation 14:1; Revelation 22:4 the redeemed have the name of God on their foreheads. There is undoubtedly a contrast between this woman here and the woman in chapter Rev 12.

Mystery (μυστηριονmustērion). Either in apposition with ονομαonoma or as part of the inscription on her forehead. In either case the meaning is the same, that the name Babylon is to be interpreted mystically or spiritually (cf. πνευματικωςpneumatikōs Revelation 11:8) for Rome.

The Mother of the Harlots and of the Abominations of the Earth (η Μητηρ των Πορνων και των δελυγματων της ΓηςHē Mētēr tōn Pornōn kai tōn Bdelugmatōn tēs Gēs). The Metropolis of the Empire is the mother of harlotry and of the world‘s idolatries. Charles quotes Tacitus (Ann. XV. 44) about Rome as the city “quo cuncta undique atrocia aut pudenda confluunt celebranturque.”

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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
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Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/revelation-17.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Upon her forehead a name

As was customary with harlots, who had their names inscribed on a ticket. Seneca, addressing a wanton priestess, “Nomen tuum pependit a fronte,” thy name hung from thy forehead. See Juvenal, Satire vi., 123 sqq., of the profligate Messalina, “having falsely assumed the ticket of Lycisca.”

Mystery

Some understand this as a part of the name, others as implying that the name is to be interpreted symbolically.

Babylon

See on 1 Peter 5:13. Tertullian, Irenaeus, and Jerome use Babylon as representing the Roman Empire. In the Middle Ages Rome is frequently styled the Western Babylon. The sect of the Fraticelli, an eremitical organization from the Franciscans in the fourteenth century, who carried the vow of poverty to the extreme and taught that they were possessed of the Holy Spirit and exempt from sin - first familiarized the common mind with the notion that Rome was the Babylon, the great harlot of the Apocalypse (see Milligan, “Latin Christianity,” Book xii., ch. vi.). On the passage cited from Dante (v. i.), Dean Plumptre remarks: “The words have the interest of being a medieval interpretation of Revelation 17:1-15, in which, however, the harlot and the beast seem somewhat strangely blended. The harlot is the corrupted Church of Rome; the seven heads are the seven hills on which the city is built; or perhaps, with an entirely different exegesis, the seven gifts of the Spirit, or the seven sacraments with which that Church had, in its outset, been endowed: the ten horns are the ten commandments. As long as the Church was faithful to her spouse, she had the moral strength which came from those gifts, and the divine law which she represented. When that failed, she became as a harlot, and her whoredom with kings was the symbol of her alliance with secular powers for the oppression of the nations” (On “Inferno,” xix., 110).

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Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/revelation-17.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

And on her forehead a name written — Whereas the saints have the name of God and the Lamb on their foreheads.

Mystery — This very word was inscribed on the front of the Pope's mitre, till some of the Reformers took public notice of it.

Babylon the great — Benedict XIII., in his proclamation of the jubilee, A.D1725, explains this sufficiently. His words are, "To this holy city, famous for the memory of so many holy martyrs, run with religious alacrity. Hasten to the place which the Lord hath chose. Ascend to this new Jerusalem, whence the law of the Lord and the light of evangelical truth hath flowed forth into all nations, from the very first beginning of the church: the city most rightfully called 'The Palace,' placed for the pride of all ages, the city of the Lord, the Sion of the Holy One of Israel. This catholic and apostolical Roman church is the head of the world, the mother of all believers, the faithful interpreter of God and mistress of all churches." But God somewhat varies the style.

The mother of harlots — The parent, ringleader, patroness, and nourisher of many daughters, that losely copy after her.

And abominations — Of every kind, spiritual and fleshly.

Of the earth — In all lands. In this respect she is indeed catholic or universal.

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Wesley, John. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/revelation-17.html. 1765.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

Names and designations of rank and office were often attached to the in ancient times.

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Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/revelation-17.html. 1878.

Scofield's Reference Notes

mystery (See Scofield "Matthew 13:11")

Babylon See note 2, Isaiah 13:1 (See Scofield "Isaiah 13:1")

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Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Revelation 17:5". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/revelation-17.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

5 And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

Ver. 5. Mystery] This word mystery is in the pope’s mitre, saith Brocard the Venetian, and many more who have been at Rome, and profess to have seen it. (Dr James of the Corr. of Script. Preface.) The whole antichristian state is a mystery of iniquity, 2 Thessalonians 2:7, and is much conversant about mysteries, sacraments, ceremonies, pompous rites, &c.: murders, treasons, thefts, &c., they easily dispense with, but none of their ceremonies. Let God, say they, see to the breach of his own law; we will look to ours. Rome was raised in a mystery: she grew to her greatness insensibly and cunningly. Her bishop is both an Aemulus and an opposite to Christ; one that would seem like him, a vice-Christ, αντιχριστος, and yet is his chiefest adversary; this is the mystery of iniquity. See 2 Thessalonians 2:7, {See Trapp on "2 Thessalonians 2:7"}

Babylon the great] Rome, resembling the Assyrian Babylon in pride, idolatry, filthiness, but especially in cruelty toward the Church. See the Babylonian cruelty graphically described, Jeremiah 51:34, and make the comparison.

The mother of harlots] The Church of Rome to this day delights to be styled Holy Mother Church. Holy she is in the sense that the Hebrews call harlots. And such a mother, as bastards have for their mother, by whose name they are called; the father is seldom mentioned by them.

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Trapp, John. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/revelation-17.html. 1865-1868.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

Revelation 17:5. μεγάλη, μήτηρ, κ. τ. λ., the great, the mother, etc.) Benedict XIII., above others, magnificently embellished the boastful name of Rome, in his Indiction for a universal jubilee, A. 1725. “To this holy city, illustrious with the memory of so many holy martyrs, and especially instructed in the doctrine of the blessed apostles, the princes of the Church, and hallowed with their glorious blood, flock together with religious eagerness of mind. Hasten to the place which the Lord hath chosen; ascend to this New Jerusalem, whence from the very beginning of the infant Church the law of the Lord and the light of evangelical truth has flowed forth to all nations. [Hasten to] a city honoured with so many and so great benefits, loaded with so many gifts, that it is most deservedly called the city of priests and kings, built for the pride of ages, the city of the Lord, the Sion of the Holy One of Israel. Here in truth make confession unto God in the great assembly, praise Him among much people. Inasmuch as this very Catholic and Apostolic Roman Church, constituted the head of the world by the sacred seat of the blessed Peter, is the mother of all believers, the faithful interpreter of the Divinity, and the mistress of all churches. Here the unsullied deposit of the faith, here the fountain of sacerdotal unity, here the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and the supreme power of binding and loosing, here, finally, that inexhaustible treasure of the sacred indulgences of the Church, of which the Roman Pontiff is the dispenser, is guarded.” But John, in accordance with truth, παραφράζει and explains this boastful title: Babylon, etc.

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Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/revelation-17.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

And upon her forehead was a name written; as public harlots were wont to write their names, some upon the fronts of their houses, some upon their foreheads: it denotes the open guilt and impudence of this spiritual harlot.

Mystery; that is, there is a mystery in what follows in her name.

Babylon the great; not to be understood of the Chaldean Babylon, but of a city or polity under the gospel; as, Revelation 11:8, she was called spiritually Sodom and Egypt, so also in a spiritual or mystical sense she is called Babylon, because a city like to Babylon for idolatry and persecution of God’s Israel.

The mother of harlots; not it mere harlot but one that bred up harlots, and nursed up idolatry, communicating it to others. This is the true name of Rome instead of "holy mother church."

And abominations of the earth; a place in which not only idolatry reigneth, but all abominable things committed in the world; carnal whoredom tolerated by them, and sodomy, &c.

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Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/revelation-17.html. 1685.

Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture

на челе В Риме было установлено, чтобы блудницы носили головные повязки, на которых было написано их имя (ср. Иер. 3:3). Это указывало на образ жизни и обнажало их профессию. На челе блудницы начертаны три звания, которые характеризуют лживую религиозную систему, подходящую к завершению.

тайна Божья тайна – это правда, сначала скрытая Богом, но раскрытая в Новом Завете. См. пояснения к Мф. 13:11; Еф. 3:4, 5. Истинную духовную природу Вавилона еще нужно раскрыть. Таким образом, подробности того, как это будет обнародовано в мире, еще не известны.

Вавилон великий Этот Вавилон отличается от исторически существовавшего города Вавилона (он существовал и во времена Иоанна). Нельзя ассоциировать подробности видения Иоанна ни с одним географическим местом (см. пояснение к 14:8).

мать блудницам и мерзостям Все лжерелигиозные системы корнями уходят в Вавилон (ср. Быт. 11; см. пояснение к 14:8).

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MacLaren, Alexander. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". Alexander MacLaren's Expositions of Holy Scripture. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mac/revelation-17.html.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

Mystery; apparently indicating the symbolic character of her name.

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Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/revelation-17.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

‘And on her forehead a name written, a mystery, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF PROSTITUTES AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.’

Again we have confirmation that this is Babylon, but it is more than Babylon, it is Babylon as a symbol, as the mother of all idolatry and sexual perversion and of all spiritualism and witchcraft. It is a ‘mystery’, something once hidden now revealed. That Babylon was now (in John’s time) represented by Rome was part of that ‘mystery’, but only as symbolic of what Rome and Babylon stood for, greatness, supremacy, commercialism, pernicious influence and opposition to the living God. Wherever great cities control men’s minds, there is Babylon the Great. It is a symbol of man’s enmity against God.

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Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/revelation-17.html. 2013.

Foy E. Wallace's Commentary on the Book of Revelation

The name written on the woman's head, in verse five, was the inscription: Mystery, Babylon the Great, the Mother of Harlots and Abominations of the Earth. The spiritual evils of the land of Judea with all the national apostasies of Judaism were her offspring.

The prophet Hosea employed the same figure of whoredom, or harlotry, in his descriptions of Israel in chapters 1:2 and 2:1-5 of his book of prophecy. Stronger terms defining spiritual adulteries, fornications and harlotry, could not have been employed to set forth the spiritual luridness of Israel which brought on her exile--and the same extreme analogies apply to the spiritual decadence of Jerusalem which culminated in destruction, devastation downfall and termination.

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Wallace, Foy E. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Foy E. Wallace's Commentary on the Book of Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/foy/revelation-17.html. 1966.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

It was customary in John"s day for Roman prostitutes to wear their names on their headbands. [Note: Swete, p214.] However, it is not clear whether this woman"s name was on a headband or on her forehead (cf. Revelation 7:3; Revelation 9:4; Revelation 13:16-18; Revelation 14:1; Jeremiah 3:3). Her name was a "mystery," namely, something not previously revealed but now made clear. A name in Scripture represents everything about the person who bears it, often the person"s reputation. The content of the mystery about this Babylonian system is what John revealed here, especially the new revelation about its evil character and judgment ( Revelation 17:17-18). [Note: Lenski, p496.] The harlot represents Babylon that is a "mother of harlots," not just one herself, but the fountainhead of many other evil religious systems and everything anti-Christian (cf. Genesis 10:9-10; Genesis 11:1-9). [Note: Alford, 4:707; Scott, p342.] God attributed all kinds of abominations to her.

"In our day the ecumenical church has faced a lot of problems. It seems that they have recognized psychological differences in people and that it is impossible to water down theologies and practices to suit everyone. So each group will come into this great world ecumenical system but retain some of its peculiarities. For example, those who want to immerse will immerse. Those who want to sprinkle will sprinkle. Those who want elaborate ritual will have it, and those who want no ritual will have that. You see, there is going to be more than the mother harlot-there will be a whole lot of harlots, a regular brothel." [Note: McGee, 5:1033.]

Many writers have traced the religiously apostate system of worship begun in Babylon and carried on through history through Roman Catholicism and the modern Christian ecumenical movement. [Note: See Alexander Hislop, The Two Babylons, for an extended treatment, or Walvoord, " Revelation," pp970-71, for a brief one. Ironside, pp287-95, is also helpful.] However, this description of Babylonianism encompasses all forms of paganism including perversions of Christianity and non-Christian religions.

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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/revelation-17.html. 2012.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Revelation 17:5. And upon her forehead a name written, Mystery, Babylon the Great, the Mother of the Harlots and of the abominations of the earth. The word ‘mystery’ may be understood either as a part of the name, or as an intimation of the writer that the name is to be understood symbolically. The latter interpretation is to be preferred. It is hardly likely that the name should openly declare itself to be unreal. For such a use of the word ‘mystery,’ comp. the use of ‘spiritually’ in chap. Revelation 11:8. It is worthy of notice that the word ‘mystery’ occurs only four times in the Apocalypse, three times in connection with the nature or the fate of Babylon (chaps. Revelation 10:7, Revelation 17:5; Revelation 17:7), and once with the seven churches which represent the Church universal (chap. Revelation 1:20). The name of the harlot is thus limited to what follows. Some would even restrict it still further. According to their view, ‘Babylon the Great’ was alone written upon the harlot’s forehead, and the subsequent description is an explanation of the writer. The name has already met us in its shorter form in chaps. Revelation 14:8, Revelation 16:19.

It is unnecessary, in illustration of this verse to refer to the fact that in the pagan world harlots had their names attached to their foreheads. The usage of the Apocalypse is to speak thus of the adherents both of God and of Satan—of God, see chaps. Revelation 2:17, Revelation 7:3, Revelation 14:1; of Satan, chaps. Revelation 13:1; Revelation 13:16, Revelation 19:20, etc. More particularly the name thus borne upon the forehead is a parody of the name borne upon the forehead of the high priest (comp. chap. Revelation 2:17; Exodus 28:36). It declares the person.

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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/revelation-17.html. 1879-90.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

A mystery. That is, a secret, because what follows of the name and title of the great harlot is to be taken in a mystical sense. --- Babylon. Either the city of the devil in general; or, if this place be to be understood of any particular city, pagan Rome, which then and for 300 years persecuted the Church, and was the principal seat both of empire and idolatry. (Challoner)

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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/revelation-17.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

MYSTERY. See App-193and App-. The verse should be read, "And upon her forehead (she had) a name written, a secret symbol (musterion), BABYLON THE GREAT, the mother of the harlots and of the abominations of the earth". The name of the woman is therefore a secret sign or symbol of "that great city" which she personifies (Revelation 17:18).

HARLOTS = the harlots.

OF THE EARTH. Babylon is the fountain-head of all idolatry and systems of false worship. This is the "mystery of iniquity" (2 Thessalonians 2:7) seen in all the great "religions" of the world. All alike substitute another god for the God of the Bible; a god made either with the hands or with the imagination, but equally made; a religion consisting of human merit and endeavor. The "Reunion of the Churches" of Christendom and the "League of Nations" are two of the most arresting signs of the times.

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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/revelation-17.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

Upon her forehead ... name - as harlots had. What's contrast to "HOLINESS TO THE LORD," inscribed on the mitre on the high priest's forehead.

Mystery - a spiritual fact heretofore hidden, incapable of discovery by reason, but now revealed. As the union of Christ and the Church is a 'great mystery' (a momentous spiritual truth, once hidden, now revealed, Ephesians 5:31-32), so the Church, by conformity to the world, becoming a harlot, is a counter "mystery." As iniquity in the harlot is a leaven working in "mystery" - i:e., latently ('the mystery of iniquity') - so, when she is destroyed, the iniquity shall be revealed in the man of iniquity, the open embodiment of all previous evil (2 Thessalonians 2:7-8). Contrast the "mystery of God" and "godliness," Revelation 10:7; 1 Timothy 3:16. Rome crucified Christ; destroyed Jerusalem and scattered the Jews; persecuted the early Christians in pagan times, and Protestant Christians in papal times; and probably shall be restored to its pristine grandeur, as under the Ceasars, just before the burning of the harlot and of itself with her. So Hippolytus ('De Antichristo,' in the second century) thought. Popery cannot be at once the 'mystery of iniquity' and the manifested Antichrist. Probably it will compromise for political power (Revelation 17:3) the Christianity still in its creed, and thus prepare for Antichrist's manifestation. The name Babylon given in the image, Daniel 2:1-49, to the head, is here given to the harlot. This connects her with the fourth kingdom, Rome, the last part of the image. Benedict XIII., in his indiction for a jubilee, A.D. 1725 AD, called Rome 'mother of all believers, and mistress of all churches' (harlots like herself). [The correspondence of syllables and accents is striking: Hee (Greek #3588) pornee (Greek #4204) kai (Greek #2532) to (Greek #3588) theerion (Greek #2342); Hee (Greek #3588) numfee (Greek #3565) kai (Greek #2532) to (Greek #3588) arnion (Greek #721). The whore and the beast; the Bride and the Lamb.]

OF HARLOTS - `of the harlots and of the abominations.' Not merely Rome, but Christendom, as a whole, as Israel, as a whole (Isaiah 1:21), has become a harlot. The invisible Church of believers is hidden in the visible. The lines which separate harlot and woman are not denominational, but can only be spiritually discerned. If Rome were the only Babylon, much of the spiritual profit of Revelation would be lost to us; but the harlot "sitteth upon many waters" (Revelation 17:1), and "ALL nations have drunk of the wine of her fornication" (Revelation 17:2; Revelation 18:3; "the earth," Revelation 19:2). External extensiveness over the world, and internal conformity to it-worldlines in extent and contents-is symbolized by the world-city's name, "Babylon." As the sun shines on all the earth, thus the woman clothed with the sun is to let her light penetrate to the uttermost parts. But she, in externally Christianizing the world, permits herself to be seduced by it: thus her catholicity is not that of the Jerusalem we look for ("the MOTHER of us all," Isaiah 2:2-4; Galatians 4:25; Revelation 21:2), but that of Babylon, the worldwide harlot city! [As Babylon was destroyed, and the Jews restored to Jerusalem, by Cyrus, so our Cyrus (Persian, the sun), the Sun of righteousness, shall bring Israel, literal and spiritual, to the holy Jerusalem at His coming.

Babylon and Jerusalem are the two opposite poles of the spiritual world.] Still, Rome is not accidentally, but in its very PRINCIPLE, a harlot, metropolis of whoredom, "the mother of harlots;" whereas the Evangelical Protestant Church is, in her principle, a chaste woman: the Reformation was the woman's protest against the harlot. The spirit of pagan Rome had, before the Reformation, changed the Church in the West into a Church-State, Rome; and in the East, into a State-Church, fettered by the world-power, having its center in Byzantium. The Roman and Greek churches have thus fallen from the spiritual essence of the Gospel into the elements of the world (Auberlen). Compare the woman "wickedness" or 'lawlessness,' 'iniquity' (Zechariah 5:7-8; Zechariah 5:11), carried to Babylon: cf. "the mystery of iniquity," 'the man of sin,' 'that wicked one,' literally, 'the lawless one' (2 Thessalonians 2:7-8; also Matthew 24:12).

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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/revelation-17.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
upon
7:3; Isaiah 3:9; Philippians 3:19
MYSTERY
2 Thessalonians 2:7; 2 Timothy 3:1-5
BABYLON
11:8; 14:8; 16:19; 18:2,10,21; Jeremiah 51:47,48
THE MOTHER
18:9; 19:2
HARLOTS
or, fornications.
Reciprocal: Deuteronomy 7:25 - an abomination;  Deuteronomy 27:15 - an abomination;  1 Kings 11:7 - abomination;  2 Kings 9:22 - the whoredoms;  1 Chronicles 5:25 - and went;  2 Chronicles 15:8 - abominable idols;  2 Chronicles 21:11 - compelled;  Psalm 87:4 - Babylon;  Psalm 137:8 - happy;  Song of Solomon 5:7 - they smote;  Isaiah 24:10 - of confusion;  Isaiah 41:24 - an abomination;  Jeremiah 44:4 - this;  Jeremiah 50:12 - mother;  Jeremiah 50:14 - for she;  Jeremiah 50:38 - the land;  Ezekiel 16:15 - and playedst;  Ezekiel 16:35 - O harlot;  Ezekiel 34:4 - but with;  Daniel 4:30 - great;  Hosea 1:2 - for;  Luke 12:45 - to beat;  Acts 5:36 - boasting;  Galatians 4:26 - mother;  1 Timothy 3:16 - the mystery;  1 Peter 4:3 - and;  1 Peter 5:13 - at;  Revelation 9:21 - nor of their fornication;  Revelation 13:1 - blasphemy;  Revelation 13:17 - name;  Revelation 17:1 - the great;  Revelation 18:23 - for;  Revelation 21:27 - worketh

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/revelation-17.html.

Walter Scott's Commentary on Revelation

BABYLON A MOTHER.

Revelation 17:5. — "Upon her forehead a name written, Mystery, Babylon the Great, the mother of the harlots, and of the abominations of the earth." The shameless character of Babylon is next shown. Her name is publicly borne, indelibly stamped upon her forehead, so that all may read and understand the true character of this awful system — a travesty of the true Church. Her name is a compound one. First, "Mystery."{*See remarks on Revelation 1:20; and on Revelation 10:7.} The general usage of the word in the New Testament signifies what is now revealed, but had hitherto been a secret (Matthew 13:1-58; Ephesians 5:32, etc.). The Church is subject to Christ; the woman is subject to none. She usurps Christ's place of supremacy over the nations. She is indeed a mystery. She should have stood for God and truth, but now she is witnessed as the embodiment of error, and of all that is morally vile and wicked. Second, "Babylon the Great." It is a huge system of spiritual evil. Great and bad as Babylon was, the enslaver of God's people of old, so bad that its doom is irrevocable (Jeremiah 51:64), yet it is exceeded by far in its spiritual counterpart, the great Babylon of the Apocalypse. The former was guilty, but the latter much more so. In Babylon the Great we witness the gathering up in one vast system all the evils which in past times have gone to wreck the Church. This is the culmination. The evils which have ever afflicted Christendom are here focused. The last days of the Church on earth are her worst. Christianity is the combined production of the Godhead, but Christendom is here viewed as the vilest thing on earth. Truly, the woman is entitled to the appellation "Babylon the Great." That which should be her shame and sin she publicly glories in. Third, "The mother of the harlots, and of the abominations of the earth." Her offspring are numerous. She is the parent, the source of each and every religious system which courts the world. Religious idolatry of every shape and form, every ensnaring thing and object; in short, systems, things, doctrines, and objects used by Satan to turn men from God are here traced to their source — Great Babylon. The moral features of Babylon are ever the same — unchanged through all the ages. Here she is seen in her worst, because in her last and closing hours, the parent of all that is morally loathsome. This, then, is the character publicly borne by the woman, just as in ancient times it was the practice in certain places for harlots to bear their name and evil reputation on their foreheads. If the admirers of the woman fail to see her true character because intoxicated with her finery and grandeur the spiritual do not.

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Scott, Walter. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Walter Scott's Commentary on Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sor/revelation-17.html.

E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament

The name that John saw written on the forehead of this woman was put there by the Lord to designate to the apostate her true character, not that she had taken to herself such an inscription. In truth the leaders of the church of Rome of today deny that this applies to their "holy mother church." Mystery is a part of her characteristics; Thayer's definition of the word at this place Isaiah, "The mystic or hidden sense." The apostate church has always thrived most when she could keep her people in ignorance of what was going on. Babylon the great. There are many ways in which anything can be great both good and bad. Babylon was great in a bad sense and that is because she was the most extensive and powerful influence for evil that Satan ever devised. Mother of harlots. A bad woman can be the mother of pure daughters and they would not need to participate in the wickedness of their mother; but this woman's daughters also are. harlota. Of course as we have previously learned, harlotry in figurative language means any false religion or unscriptural organization. The conclsion is that the religious denominations in the world are the harlot daughters of Rome, because they obtained the principal tenets that make up their creeds from the doctrines put out by that apostate church. Abominations of the earth is a general summing up of the evil doctrines and practices of the church of Rome throughout the world.

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Zerr, E.M. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/znt/revelation-17.html. 1952.

Hanserd Knollys' Commentary on Revelation

Revelation 17:5

Revelation 17:5 And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

That every one, who observeth, may know the great whore, whom John saw in his vision; she hath her name written upon her forehead,

Mystery Babylon the great, etc.

By mystery, we are to understand the mystery of iniquity, { 2 Thessalonians 2:3-7} in opposition unto the mystery of Godliness, in the doctrine, worship, and power thereof.

Babylon the great

that Isaiah, the great whore, the Roman Papal Church, and

the mother of harlots

all national churches, parish churches, cathedral churches, provincial churches, etc, who own, acknowledge, and subject themselves to the ecclesiastical headship of the Roman hierarchy, pope, and papal prelacy, episcopacy, or presbytery.

And abominations of the earth

that Isaiah, all the abominations in the world are nourished and cherished, by the indulgences, pardons, and dispensations of the Pope and Church of Rome.

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Knollys, Hanserd. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Hanserd Knollys' Commentary on Revelation". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hkc/revelation-17.html.

D.S. Clark's Commentary on Revelation

V:5. "And on her forehead a name written, Mystery, Babylon the Great, the mother of harlots and abominations of the earth." We have had the name Babylon. We were told: "Babylon is fallen." It is one of the problems of this book to determine what is meant by Babylon. Now this woman is labeled Babylon. That name is written on her; and if we find out what the woman Isaiah, we have found out what Babylon is. Now in the last verse of the chapter we are told: "And the woman is that great city that reigneth over the kings of the earth." And when you ask, what great city was it that, in John"s day, ruled over the kings of the earth, you have only one answer, and that Isaiah, Rome. So it is that this seventeenth chapter serves as an interpreter of symbols.

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Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms

Revelation 17:5. And on her forehead a name written: mystery, Babylon the great, the mother of harlots, and of the abominations of the earth. The name, which she has written on her forehead, is not a title, which she takes to herself, but the expression of her nature. The name consists of a whole sentence, and substantially, though not formally, Revelation 17:6 also belongs to it.

On mystery, secret, see at ch. Revelation 1:20, Revelation 10:7. It was there shewn that the notion of mystery is that of a matter lying absolutely beyond the reach of the common, the natural understanding. In what respects, then, was Babylon a mystery? It was so precisely by its greatness, as still continuing after the appearance of Christ, and also pressing with frightful weight upon his confessors; comp. with Revelation 17:6, which stands in close connection with the one before us. The secret is told, Revelation 17:7, or discovered, through the announcement, that this greatness is not, as the natural mind fondly imagines, an abiding one; but is destined to an entire destruction. To the secret here corresponds the great wondering of the seer in Revelation 17:6. An end comes at the same time to the mystery and the wondering. The conflict, which the "mystery" of the prosperity of the wicked awakens in the souls of believers, is most vividly portrayed in Psalms 73. The victory and the unveiling of the mystery is attained there, by the Psalmist recovering himself from his error, and going into the sanctuary of God, where alone an insight can be obtained into the secrets, with which the natural understanding labours in vain, (Psalms 73:16-17). The solution of the mystery there, too, is found by "marking their end." According to the common supposition, the word mystery points, it is thought, to the circumstance, that by Babylon is meant, not the ancient city bearing that name, but Rome. This, however, would be no mystery in the Scripture sense; it is at most but an enigma, and no longer even that, after the composition of the first epistle of Peter.

The predicate of Babylon the great, refers to "the wide circumference of the city," only in so far as that represented the vast extent of her territory. Thus it appears, that "the great," and the mother of harlots," etc., are very closely connected together, and that we are not, with Bengel, to make out the relation thus: "beside her greatness, she is also called, on account of her internal spiritual constitution, the mother of harlots and of the abominations of the earth."

The mother of harlots, as much as the great whore in Revelation 17:1; the arch-harlot, she who practises through the widest bounds, a policy the most cunning and destructive to the nations. All, who practise the same within narrower bounds, are, as it were, her daughters. The abominations here also can only be political enormities. Under these are comprehended what she did against the church. For, the root of her conduct in that respect was not false religious zeal, but despotism. In Revelation 17:6, this is still more explicitly brought out.

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Hengstenberg, Ernst. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". Ernst Hengstenberg on John, Revelation, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel & Psalms. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/heg/revelation-17.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

5.Upon her forehead’ written—By Roman custom professional harlots presented themselves to view with their names inscribed upon their persons. This harlot has a full and most significant inscription.

Mystery— This word is at once a reminder of St. Paul’s “mystery of iniquity,” 2 Thessalonians 2:7. He mentions, indeed, a “mystery of godliness,” 1 Timothy 3:16. But, in contrast, here is a “mystery” of profound “iniquity,” of harlotry, spiritual and real; and of stupendous abominations. Of this mystery the present woman is the impersonation; it is her name; she is that Mystery. And, therefore, in unfolding her mystery, our interpreting angel must unfold her true character.

 

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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/revelation-17.html. 1874-1909.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Revelation 17:5. Roman filles de joie wore a label with their names thus (Juv. vi. 123). (which hardly belongs to the title itself) indicates that the name is to be taken (Revelation 11:8), not literally; “a name written which is a symbol,” or a mysteriously significant title.— . . ., Rome, the natural focus of Oriental cults in general, is charged with fostering all the superstitious and vicious practices of her subjects.— . (partly justified by a perusal of Petronius and Apuleius) is an apt rebuke if it comes from the prophet of a religion which one Roman historian classed among the atrocia aut pudenda which disgraced the capital (Tacit. Ann. xv. 44).

 

 

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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Revelation 17:5". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/revelation-17.html. 1897-1910.