Chapter 17 and 18 do not follow the chronological sequence of the book.
Chapter 19 follows the sequence of chapter 16.
Soon after rapture of the Church, those who are left behind on earth undergo a traumatic experience with fear of the unknown, uncertainty and chaos everywhere.
During that moment in tribulation people flock to religious system to find hope and comfort.
Chapter 17 basically points to the religious atmosphere in tribulation.
A woman described as a great prostitute is the religious system that emerges out of chaos.
Many waters mentioned in this chapter are people of the globe from all backgrounds.
These are unsaved people who rejected the Gospel message.
The religious system evolved is false, corrupted with all cults and religions of the world.
This false religion stands for spiritual idolatry, spiritual perversion, and antithesis of true Christianity.
Even the rulers and authorities are drawn to the one world religion as if the entire world is drunk with wine.
Apostle John gets a glimpse of the false religion described as woman dressed in purple and scarlet.
She is also adorned with gold and precious stones pointing to her wealth this one world religious system amass during tribulation period.
Apostle John sees a mysterious name given to her describing her character.
Her name is ‘Babylon the great mother of prostitutes and filth of the earth.
This false religion cannot tolerate exclusive claims of Christianity.
We see that even today that uniqueness of Christ is unacceptable to many people.
So many believers in the Lord were persecuted and killed during tribulation period.
The expression in 6th verse points to the very fact that the false religion is drunk with believers’ blood.
John was shocked that Christianity would be so hated by this one world religious system.
9th verse points to a place of ‘seven hills’ as the headquarters of world religion.
Satan is the source of Anti-Christ who rises from the sea of humanity.
Those whose names are not in the Book of Life marvel at the Antichrist because of his false resurrection.
The revived Roman Empire will be the center of the false world religion.
Before Apostle John, 5 major empires ruled the earth: Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia and Greece.
Roman Empire was in power during his time.
The revived Roman Empire will be the future power that controls the globe before the return of the Lord.
The Anti-Christ, the 8th ruler is the final ruler of the revived Roman Empire.
There will be ten kings without much power ruling simultaneously.
These ten will be united with one purpose to give power to the Antichrist the final world dictator.
These European nations will unite politically, militarily and economically.
The final stage is set for internationalism or globalism.
When the Antichrist surfaces on the world stage he will unite the world into one global power. They all have one mind and one purpose to promote and give their power to Antichrist.
These nations will wage war against the Lamb.
In the middle of tribulation, the Anti-Christ will attack the religious system in order to promote himself to be the focus of worship.
Verse 16 describes the attack on the world religion and its destruction in the hands of Antichrist.
A new world religious system emerges that worships the beast as the false messiah.
God will use this rebellion of the beast to fulfill His purpose for the Lord Jesus 2nd coming
From the eternity God unfolds His plan precisely and magnificently.
No matter who controls the world or governments God executes HIS plan according to HIS purpose and plan.
Today God is intensely and intricately involved with the events of the world.
Chapter 17 reminds us that what we observe the signs of uniting ‘religious ideologies’ are a step further towards the rapture of the church.