We have faced many challenges in Revelation 17 and 18, looking at the beast as the state (political power) and the woman as the church (religious power). Perhaps the most intriguing is the depiction of the beast turning against the woman and burning her with fire. In the interpretation we are pursuing, this is an event or a reality that has not yet happened. But history may have seen something analogous to the drama in Revelation 17 and 18. During the French Revolution, the political power turned on the religious power with savage power, at one point virtually closing down the church. The collapse of this entrenched system at that time was significantly driven by a near financial collapse. The Revolution made the state the religion, as communism would do in the Soviet Union and as fascism would do in the Third Reich.
The dominating image in Revelation 19 is the rider on the white horse. This chapter in general and the rider on the white horse in particular are rich with allusions to the most wonderful prophecy in the Old Testament and to earlier passages in Revelation. The mutilated lamb in Revelation 5, a victim of violence, is clearly identical with the victorious rider on the white horse. What a battle it has been! What a strange but certain victory it is! And the blood on his robe comes from whom?
Blessings, Sigve T.