(By Bill Salus) This article is based on the DVD entitled, “The Identity of Mystery Babylon: Mecca or Rome?” The DVD was produced from a historic debate between New York Times bestselling author Joel Richardson and myself. Richardson believes that Mecca will be the great harlot city of Revelation 17, and I defended the popular and historic view that the city is Rome. There are two end times judgments of Babylon in the book of Revelation. Revelation 17:16 makes an end of the Harlot’s world religion and Revelation 18:8-10 terminates the global economy. In Richardson’s end-time scenario, these two judgments are one and the same.
If they are not, then, in theory, his hypothesis about Mecca has significant problems, which will be uncovered at the end of this article. However, first, this article will explain how these appear to be two distinctly different judgments. Many people read and interpret the book of Revelation in strict chronological order. They believe that the events of Rev. 13 occur prior to Rev. 17. Others believe that Rev. 17 and 18 describe the same judgment events against Babylon. However, the actual order of events makes most sense when these chapters are rearranged as Rev. 17, then Rev. 13, then Rev. 18. This sequencing illustrates that Rev. 17 and Rev. 18 are describing two different events with Rev. 13 inserted in-between. CONTINUE