Jehovah`s Witness/View of Time in Rev 17


QUESTION: Hello. I wish strength in the new year.

I see that you have already been asked some questions about Rev so I thought you could help with this.

I checked how some people(including JWs) view time in Rev17 and I found a contradiction.

The angel says that the 10 horns hadnt yet risen. He also says five kings are fallen,one is and the other is yet to come but wont rule for long. These 2 statements show that the angel is using John's time as a point of reference.

Concerning the eighth king, the angel also says
17:8 The beast that you saw WAS, and IS NOT; and SHALL ASCEND out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition...
17:11 And the beast that WAS, and IS NOT, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goes into perdition.

So if the angel is using John's time as a point of reference for the heads and horns, how hes not doing the same for the eighth king, when he states the Beast WAS?(before John's time). Did you notice the contradiction? If John is taken to the future when he sees the whole beast of Rev17 then its' heads and horns should also come in existence in the future.

I believe in Rev17 John is not taken in the future, he is informed about the future. So it seems that the eighth king was existing prior to John's time. Im not rejecting the view that UNO is the eighth king, but we read that the beast WAS. Hmm, what about UNO being the resurrection of Nimrod and his tower of Babel?

Im Glad to hear your views.

ANSWER: Hi Chris,

The book of Revelations was completed in 96 CE. At that time 5 world powers had come and gone (Egypt, Babylon, Assyria, Medo-Persia, and Greece). At that time Rome (the King that "is") was the ruling power that seemed to have world domination. The other that was yet to come was the Anglo-American world power. The book of Revelations does discuss John's time period but it also covers our time on through The Great Tribulation.

Rev 17: 8, 11 The wild beast "was" = it existed as the League of Nations from January 10, 1920 onward, with 63 nations participating at one time or another. Japan, Germany, and Italy withdrew, and the Soviet Union was dropped from the League. In September 1939 the Nazi director of Germany launched WWII. Having failed to keep world peace, the League of Nations virtually plunged into an abyss of inactivity. By 1942 it had become a "has been", or it "was" no more.

It's not referring to John's time because it is a different beast, so I don't see the contradiction that you are referring to.

Warm Regards,

Pam B

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks for answering.

I find the League of Nations/UNO scenario a very good one and I proposed that the Beast is the resurrection of something much older, existing at the time of Nimrod and reviving as the League of Nations/UNO. Of course this does not match perfectly with what you believe, cause you say UNO is the resurrection of League of Nations after the World War 2.

You said you cant see the contradiction in JWs' interpretation. I'll make another try so that you may see the problem.

5 kings had fallen by John's time, 1 king was ruling at John's time, 1 another king would come in the future(beyond John's time). 10 kings(horns)would also come in the future(beyond John's time)

In these instances 1) the past is before the time of John's vision, 2)the present IS John's time, 3)the future is beyond John's time. So the angel uses a point of reference for the past,present and future and that is John's time

My question is how he doesnt do the same when he talks about the eighth king? The angel says the Beast was(existed before John's time), is not(it doesnt exist at John's time), will be(it would be resurrected after John's time).

I dont see the angel saying that the Beast will come in existence in the future, will then die and finally will be resurrected, all of which will happen in the future. It seems that the angel says the Beast had existed before the vision, it didnt anymore and would come back in the future. JW's interpretation puts both the birth,death and resurrection of the Beast all in the future above John's time. But the angel explained that the Beast had existed before John's time and during his days it was "dead".

Can you see the problem now? Thats why I proposed the scenario that the Beast is Nimrod who tried to globalize the world in Babel, taking the power of nations under his control(Babylon the Great connected with his wife and priestess). Nimrod was resurrected in our times as the League of Nations/UNO who tries again to globalize the world.

Thanks, Im open to opinions. Maybe you could explain away the problem so that I could accept again the Watchtower scenario.

Hi Chris,

I have included a link to an article that answers this question in detail for you.

I have also included a small exert of the article below:

"We can identify the seventh head of the wild beast of Revelation chapter 13 by comparing Johnís vision with Danielís vision of the frightening ten-horned beast.* (Read Daniel 7:7, 8, 23, 24.) The beast that Daniel saw represented the Roman World Power. (See the chart on pages 12-13.) In the fifth century C.E., the Roman Empire began to fragment. The ten horns sprouting from the head of that fearsome beast represent kingdoms that grew out of that empire."

I would like to send you a pdf of the watchtower article so you can see the chart that the above paragraph is referring to. If you would like me to send it to you please let me know.

Jehovah`s Witness

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Sister Pam B


Questions about Jehovah's Witnesses and our beliefs.


Learning Bible teachings since 1975. I was baptized in 1994.

Jehovah's Witness

I have a BFA in graphic design and I'm in school for my MFA in animation right now.

©2017 All rights reserved.