What does Jezebel symbolize? (Revelation 2:20)


Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.

Revelation 2:20 - King James

⚪ The Roman Catholic Church
⚫ The feminine influence in the true church
⚫ A woman (women) of the congregation of Thyatira (1st century)


⚪ She symbolizes the Roman Catholic Church

[Rev. 2:20]
Notwithstanding I have [a few things] MUCH against thee.—The fourth epoch of the church nominal. [Because] THAT thou sufferest that woman Jezebel.— The Roman Catholic Church, as shown in parallel below: [...] Which [calleth herself] SAITH SHE IS a prophets - Claims to be an infallible teacher, but really has no right to teach at all—"I suffer not a woman [a church] to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man [Christ]." (1 Tim. 2:12; 1 Cor. 14:34; F270.) "False prophecy, fornication and Idolatry are symbolized by the woman Jezebel." (Cook.) Jezebel was a prophetess of Baal—1 Ki 14:31-33; 21:25. [To teach and to seduce] AND TEACHETH AND SEDUCETH My servants to commit fornication.—Union of church and state.—Rev. 2:14; 2 Ki. 9:22; 1 Cor. 14:34. And to eat things sacrificed unto Idols.—Reverence the creed-idols set up by the various ecumenical councils.— Rev. 2:14.

Source : 🇺🇸 1917 - Studies in the Scriptures, Vol 7, The finished mystery, page 39, page 40, page 41 + Cover


⚫ She symbolizes the feminine influence in the true church

[Rev. 2:20]
"Thyatira" means "daughter"; and this is supported by the words of verse twenty. [...] In that period of time, however, there developed a condition that was displeasing to the Lord; a female influence was there operating particularly toward the elders or leaders of the church and tending to draw husbands and brothers away from the true service of God, tending also to cause them to take a compromising position with Satan's organization. Hence the Lord says: "But I have this against thee, Because thou lettest alone the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess; and she teaches and seduces my servants, to fornicate, and to eat idolsacrifices."- Vs. 20, Diaglott. Jezebel, the wife of King Ahab of Israel, improperly influenced her husband. She is made prominent in the Scriptures in connection with Elijah. (1 Ki. 16: 31; 19: 1-3) Such strongly suggests that Thyatira pictures a condition existing in the church during the Elijah period thereof. It was in that period of time particularly that women attempted to make themselves prominent and influential in the church and were encouraged so to do by some of the leaders. One of the original incorporators of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society was a woman, the wife of the president thereof, and she insisted on editing The Watch Tower and, being resisted, led other women to take a wrongful course against the Lord's work. The Scriptural statement, "that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess," surely refers to certain female influence in the church exercised over leaders or men prominent therein. Jesus is authority for the statement of truth that a man must love the Lord more than he loves his wife or any other creature, otherwise he is not worthy of the Lord's favor. (Luke 14: 26; Matt. 19: 27-29) When female influence, whether it be that of wife, sweetheart, mother, Or sister, causes a man to deviate from faithfulness and whole-hearted service to the Lord, that influence not only is wrong but will lead to destruction. The Lord likens such unto the wrongful influence exercised by Jezebel over the king which led to her destruction and to his. This scripture could not have reference to Babylon, because surely God never gave the Devil's organization any 'time to repent'; but it does refer to an improper condition existing in the true church, and exercised by women, and that wrongfully, which is illustrated by Jezebel.

Source : 🇺🇸 1930 - Light, vol 1, page 29, page 30 + Cover

[Rev. 2]
The promise of the Lord is that the "Jezebel" workers would be separated from his approved ones when he would appear at his temple for judgment. Until then they were told to hold fast the faith, love, and ministry committed to them, always contending for the faith first delivered to the saints.

Source : 🇺🇸 1930 - Light, vol 1, page 33, page 34 + Cover


⚫ She symbolizes a woman (women) of the congregation of Thyatira, city of Asia, in the 1st century

"That Woman Jezebel"

I DO hold th is against you, that you I tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, and she teaches and misleads my slaves to commit fornication and to eat things sacrificed to idols.” (Revelation 2:20) So said Jesus to the Christian elders in Thyatira. The congregation was very active [...] The Jezebel in Thyatira—either one woman or a group of women — similarly encouraged immorality and idolatry among God’s people. Some in the congregation listened to her, since Jesus speaks of “her children,” likely her followers. [...] Why was the Jezebel of Thyatira so influential? Looking at the parallel with Jezebel of old, some have thought she was the wife of the leading elder in Thyatira. The Bible, however, does not say that. More likely, her strong personality and the fact that she claimed to be a prophetess gave her status in the congregation. It has been suggested that the wrong practices she promoted had to do with trade guilds. According to Dr. W. M. Ramsay, “more trade-guilds are known in Thyatira than in any other Asian city.” [...] In fact, the teaching of Jezebel in Thyatira resembled “the teaching of Balaam” in Pergamum. (Revelation 2:14) The Pergamum congregation had endured much persecution, but some there were imitating Balaam of old in promoting fornication and idolatry. It has been suggested that in Pergamum, the Balaam influence encouraged compromise so as to avoid harsh persecution, while in Thyatira Jezebel encouraged compromise for economic reasons. Whatever the case, both teachings were death-dealing apostasy. Could a Jezebel—or Balaam—influence exist today? Yes, indeed. Many leaders of Christendom imitate Jezebel in tolerating in their congregations active homosexuality, fornication, adultery, abortion, and similar things condemned by God. Even within the Christian congregation, a few individuals have promoted a “liberalizing” of true worship, encouraging Christians not to adhere strictly to Bible standards and even promoting immorality. All who wish to please Jehovah should avoid such ideas, even if they are presented by individuals—men or women— with colorful or forceful personalities. This thinking is as deadly today as it was in the first century.—Revelation 2:22, 23.

Source : 🇺🇸 The Watchtower (Etude), April 1 1990, page 30 + Cover