God has a problem with harlots.
Harlotry is the attempt to buy or sell the intimate communion called Love.
Jesus had a thing for harlots.
When one was thrown at His feet, He said, “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.” And then, “Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more.” He treats harlots as if they are His Bride.
The Great Harlot in the Revelation is a “world ruler of this present darkness.” She is an economy of porneia—that’s the practice of buying and selling Love. She is a “principality,” an economy, and a city like Babylon, Rome, and Jerusalem. A city is made up of people. God made people.
In chapter 18 a voice from Heaven cries, “Come out of her my people.”
In Genesis 2, God made the Adam, and said, “It’s not good that the Adam is alone.” The Adam was alone in the presence of Love. God is Love. God is the Adam’s Helper. Adam couldn’t find his helper. And God said, “I will make a helper fit for the Adam.”
God made the Adam, male and female.
Male or female is not “the Adam’s” Helper; male and female is a sacramental representation of humanity’s Helper and humanity. The word, “helper” (ayzer in Hebrew) is never used for human helpers.
God alone is our Helper.
Christ is the Bridegroom, and we are His Bride.
He was made fit for us on a tree in a garden, just outside the walls of Jerusalem.
In the middle of the Garden, God placed the Tree of Life.
“I am the Life,” said Jesus. Jesus, “the Life,” must’ve been hanging on that tree in the middle of that garden.
And in the middle of the Garden, God placed the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and evil. “No one is Good, but God alone,” said Jesus, and “I am the Good . . . Shepherd.” Jesus, “the Good in flesh,” must’ve been hanging on that tree in that Garden. Jesus is the Eschatos Adam, our Husband.
The snake lied to the woman, saying, “dying you will not die.”
And the woman saw that the tree was “good for food and a delight to the eyes . . . so she took and ate.” That was rather beastly of her.
And the woman saw that the tree was “desired to make one wise,” like God . . . so she took the Life and made it her own life. That was rather whorish.
In Revelation 18, The Lord says “Pay her back double for her sins.”
Four times in Scripture, God pays back double for sin and it always looks like Grace. In Isaiah 61 we read, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me . . . to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God.”
The death of Jesus, which is the beginning of the eternal jubilee, is vengeance upon the economy of the harlot; the Grace of God means that everything is free, so none can pay.
“Instead of your shame,” continues Isaiah, “there shall be a double portion… they shall have everlasting joy.”
We took “the Life,” and God requires “the Life.” That’s what we call justice. We took “the Life,” and God gives “the Life.” That’s God’s Justice. That’s double vengeance. That’s how God gets what God deserves—humanity in His own image.
Our Husband cries, “Father forgive them they know not what they do. They do not know the Good; they do not know the Life; they do not know that I am their Helper. Father, forgive them, the Life.”
Now . . . can you find your Helper?
The double vengeance is the blood of the Lamb that flows from the throne—the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God—the cross of our Lord. The double vengeance is an endless river of blood that’s wine and wine that’s blood. The Life is in the blood. And He is the Good. The double vengeance destroys the harlot and gives birth to the Bride.
You cannot pay. That’s the infinite vengeance of God.
*Discussion questions are available for this sermon here: “How to Judge a Harlot”