Revelation 17:9 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Revelation 17:9, NIV: This calls for a mind with wisdom. The seven heads are seven hills on which the woman sits.

Revelation 17:9, ESV: This calls for a mind with wisdom: the seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman is seated;

Revelation 17:9, KJV: And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth.

Revelation 17:9, NASB: Here is the mind which has wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains upon which the woman sits,

Revelation 17:9, NLT: 'This calls for a mind with understanding: The seven heads of the beast represent the seven hills where the woman rules. They also represent seven kings.

Revelation 17:9, CSB: This calls for a mind that has wisdom. "The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman is seated. They are also seven kings:

What does Revelation 17:9 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The angel explained that the beast's seven heads are seven mountains. Many expositors attribute the seven mountains to the seven hills of Rome. Originally, Rome included seven hills on the Tiber River. These hills were named Palatine, Aventine, Caelian, Equiline. Viminal, Quirimal, and Capitoline. Later Rome's territory included the hill Janiculum and another hill to the north.

If Rome, "the city of seven hills," is referred to in this verse, we might conclude that Rome is the beast's capital city. Or, as some do, that the religious power behind the Antichrist is connected to Catholicism. However, the following verse also refers to these seven mountains as seven kings (Revelation 17:10). It is unwise, therefore, to be dogmatic about identifying the city of Rome as the beast's capital city, or a reference to a particular religion. Just as a mountain rises above its surrounding area, so an unrighteous king or ruler exalts himself above his subjects. Further, a mountain is strong and may represent a king's political strength. In the tribulation, the beast arises as a strong political figure who exalts himself to the point of declaring that he is God and demanding that people worship him (2 Thessalonians 2:3–4).