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Revelation Answer to Question #29


29.  Is the bloody battle of the winepress in "Edom"?  (Revelation 14:20)


Edom was the name given to Esau, the twin brother of Jacob, after he sold his birthright (Genesis 25:30-34). The name was also later applied both to the people descended from him and to the country in which they settled (See Genesis 25:30; 36:1; Numbers 20:18,20,21; Jeremiah 49:17).

Consequently, the name Edom is an appropriate symbol of a class who, in this age, has similarly sold its birthright—for a consideration as trifling as the mess of pottage as did Esau. The name is frequently so used by the prophets in reference to that company of professed Christians, sometimes called "the Christian World," and "Christendom," i.e., Christ's Kingdom—misnomers.


After the harvest of the true Christian "wheat" is taken out of Babylon, the harvest of the "[false] vine of the earth" is thrown into the "winepress of the wrath of God" (Revelation 14:16, 18-20). False Christendom is crushed, that is, destroyed. Since life is represented by blood (Genesis 9:4), then shed life would indicate death.

As a horse carries its rider to "ride prosperously" (Psalms 45:4), so doctrines carry us forward and enable us to surmount obstacles and to refute errors and convince gainsayers (2 Corinthians 10:4-6; 2 Timothy 2:25; Titus 1:9). The horses' bridles, by which they are controlled, would seem to indicate those agents or means by which the doctrines are used or set forth.

So the destruction of Christendom would include the destruction of its false doctrines as well as the agents which controlled the direction the false doctrines took. (The false doctrine of a burning hell led to the sale of indulgences, etc.)


A furlong is equivalent to one tenth of an English mile, one eighth of a Roman stadion. Therefore, 1,600 furlongs would be 200 miles, the approximate length of ancient Palestine. The Siniatic, while slightly marred, gives 1,200 furlongs, which would be approximately the distance between Bozrah and Jezreel.

The final destruction of Christendom will occur "without the city," in Israel when Jerusalem is invaded by "all nations" (Zechariah 14:2; Ezekiel 38, 39). The "earthquake" of the plagues that causes the "city" to divide into three (Rev. 16:18,19) will be completed in the Middle East when God fights for Israel (Ezekiel 38:20).


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