And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns. Rev 17:7
And the angel said unto me
The angel is going to tell John what it is he has been seeing so far. There are many examples in scripture of a prophet seeing a vision that they did not fully understand until an angel interprets the vision for them. We find examples of this in Daniel, Zechariah and several times in the book of Revelation.
I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.
It is so important to keep in mind that there are two distinct characters in this vision, the woman known as Mystery Babylon and the seven headed, ten horned beast that she rides.
Mystery Babylon which the angel will later say is a city, is riding the seven headed ten horned beast, which is the antichrist, this seven headed, ten horned beast will later turn on her and kill her. Rev 17:12-16. I emphasize that these two are distinct because some folks, when studying the passages we will be talking about today forget this distinction, and failing to see that can cause and incorrect understanding of this prophecy.
Moving on to verse 8:
The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is. – Rev 17:8
So the angel begins to talk to John about the seven headed 10 horned beast that it mentioned in the previous verse.
Let’s also go back to the beginning of this particular vision in Rev 17, so we can see the full description John gives to this seven headed ten horned beast:
…scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. – Rev 17:3b
Here we also pick up the additional information that this seven headed ten horned beast was also scarlet and was “full of names of blasphemy”
This is the same description given to the beast four chapters earlier in Revelation chapter 13, which is about the antichrist. The beast in that chapter also has seven heads, ten horns, and has “names of blasphemy”
This is not coincidental, nor is it the only time in our verse, Revelation 17:8, that there is an explicit reference to Revelation 13 (about the antichrist beast.)
In fact, I intend to show that almost no new information is given by the angel in this verse, The new information from the angel about this beast will come after this verse, but verse 8 here almost serves as a very long re-introduction to the antichrist beast of Revelation 13 using titles and descriptions of him already clearly established.
Take for example the part of this verse that says that those that “dwell on the earth”, or the earth dwellers, which is kind of a technical term for those that are unsaved, as it clarifies here by adding that “their names are not written in the book of life,” These earth dwellers will worship the beast that was and is not and yet is.
This was not new information to John in Revelation 17 because he wrote the exact same description of the beast in Revelation 13 using identical language. For example:
And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. – Rev 13:8
The Angel back in our verse is calling to remembrance the beast that John has already seen with these exact phrases and descriptions. We will see that even the little things like the earth dwellers “wondering“ in 17: 8, is also a reference to them “wondering” at the beast in chapter 13.
Was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition:
This phrase gives people a great deal of difficulty, and so we will spend a bit of time on it:
I intend to show that this idea of “was, and is not, and coming out of the bottomless pit” is a title referring to the antichrist’s having been miraculously healed or resurrected from the dead.
The last phrase in this verse; “The beast that was, and is not, and yet is” being another way to say the exact same thing. That is he lives, he dies, and he seems to rise again, and will ultimately go to destruction or perdition. It’s sort of a chronology of his entire career on earth and it functions as a title on several occasions in the book of Revelation. Before I begin to explain the details of this we need to refresh our memories to the significance that the bible puts on the seeming resurrection of the antichrist from the dead.
Let’s review Revelation 13 which is primarily about the antichrist, to make sure we understand this preliminary idea.
In the relatively short chapter of Revelation 13 it mentions three times the fatal wound of the antichrist beast that was healed. The first instance being in verse 3:
And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him? – Rev 13:3-4
It seems to imply here that the world’s worship of the beast is directly connected to his deadly wound being healed. It says that they wondered after him saying who can make war with him?. This is the exact same word used in or current verse “wondered” and it is in the exact same context, that is wonder from the earth dwellers, associated with worship, and resurrection from the dead.
This is one of the first descriptions of the antichrist we are given in Revelation, right after the symbolic imagery of verse 1 and 2, this is the first thing that we are told about the beast, that he has a deadly wound that is healed The bible, as we will see, considers this event very important, if not preeminent.
By the second reference of this event in verse 12, the idea of a healed deadly wound has become a title or identifying description of the beast. Here it distinguishes between the first beast from the second by adding the clarification: “whose deadly wound was healed. “
And he [false prophet] exerciseth all the power of the first beast [antichrist] before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. – Rev 13:12
And here in the third reference in 13:14 we see that the healed deadly wound is used again as a title or distinguishing characteristic of the antichrist beast. Here it says:
And [the false prophet] deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live. – Rev 13:14
So here we see again this idea of a resurrection being used as a type of title and to distinguish which beast is in view.
So this phrase “was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit” is basically just another way of saying the same thing, It is an identifier as to which beast we are talking about, it is the one that was (lived), is not (died), and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit (come back from the dead)
Arthur Pink, an early English bible scholar who wrote extensively on the antichrist agrees, he said the following:
A further reference to the resurrection of the Antichrist, his coming forth from the Bottomless Pit, is found in Rev. 17:8… It is to be noted that the earth-dwellers wonder when they behold the Beast that was (alive), and is not (now alive), and yet is (raised again). The world will then be presented with the spectacle of a man raised from the dead. – Pink
Pink as well as many other people associate the phrase “coming out of the bottomless pit” in Revelation 17:8 with the apparent resurrection of the antichrist in Revelation 13. We will see explicit biblical proof of this interpretation at the end of today’s study.
The bible uses this word abyss which is here translated as “Bottomless pit.” In many different ways. It is prison for spirits in Mark 5, it is almost synonymous with the abode of the dead in the OT.
This word abyss is also the same word that the Apostle Paul uses to describe where Jesus went during at least part of the three days in which he was dead before he resurrected:
For context I’ll start at verse 6:
But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:) Or, Who shall descend into the deep? [Abyss] that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead. – Rom 10:6-7
So this same word for bottomless pit or abyss is also the place where Christ came out of when he resurrected:
We find more detail on this event in Acts 2:27-32 where Peter starts off by quoting from the Old Testament when he says:
Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell [hades], neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance. Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day. Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne; He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell [hades], neither his flesh did see corruption. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. – Act 2:27-32
Now this is interesting because here the word hades was mentioned as the place where Jesus soul went when he died, when Paul says that it was the Abyss. But we can see that contextually they are both talking about the place where Jesus’s soul went during his death.
My point is not to do an exhaustive study on this subject but only to show you that Jesus went to the abyss at some point during his death. He may have also went to other locations in hades such as paradise and even Tatarus. There are more references to this event in which I will leave for you to study further: Eph. 4:8-10, 1Pe 3:18-20, 2 Pet. 2:4-5, Matthew 12:38-45, Luke 23:43 My only point is that coming up from the abyss can be shown from scripture to mean resurrection from the dead.
So these phrases are used like a title referring to the antichrist’s apparent resurrection from the dead. It is as if it is a chronology of his career, and a title all at the same time; He is the beast that lives, dies, resurrects, and ultimately meets his doom in perdition or the lake of fire in revelation 19:20.
So I would suggest that the following phrases all are referring to not only the same person (the antichrist), but the same identifying event in that person’s life, (his apparent resurrection.)
- The beast that was, and is not, and yet is.
- The beast was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition:
- The first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
- The beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live
- The beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit
I should briefly mention before I get in to this next point, that I am not dogmatic about it and if you disagree with me it wont matter in the big picture of our study of these great chapters. But it is my conviction that the antichrist is not being referred to in another passage in Revelation 9 during the fifth trumpet, Even though the bottomless pit is mentioned there as well.
And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon. – Rev 9:11
First it should be noted that this angel is nowhere said to be itself from the bottomless pit, or having come out of the bottomless pit, It simply ruling over, and directing the beings that do come out of it and making sure that they do what they are suppose to.
In fact Revelationcommentary.org notes:
“ The angel of the abyss is identified as king over the horrible locust-like-creatures. The exact identity of this angel is not certain. The particular grammatical construction (Genitive of subordination) here indicates that this angel is over the bottomless pit. It does not say that the angel is from the bottomless pit.”
There are many reasons that I don’t see these two figures: the angel named Abaddon, and the beast we know as antichrist being the same.
A few reasons would be that this passage in Rev 9 would constitute the only time in scripture that the antichrist is referred to as an angel, and not a man. It would also be the only verse in scripture that connects the antichrist with things like the fifth trumpet, or ruling over a 5 month physical torment of only wicked people, or his name being destroyer. it seems much more likely that this passage should simply be taken at face value.
The fifth trumpet here, about the locusts being let out to torment those who do not have the seal of God for 5 months seems to be no different than the other trumpet and bowl judgments, in the sense that they have mostly Godly angels oversee the destruction of the wicked.
I see no reason that this should be taken out the of context of the simplicity and limited nature of the fifth trumpet. All that happened in the fifth trumpet is the destroying angel (this is what Abaddon and Apollyon mean) oversees the entities that torment the earth an event that lasts for five months and five months alone, that’s it. There is no other mention of this angel as having any further purpose in the end-times scenario.
It may very well be that the entities that are let out of the abyss are demonic spirits but the angel who rules over them, makes sure that they only target the ungodly, and only for 5 months.
The function of this angel is like the destroying angel of exodus in the sense that the godly are passed over to kill the ungodly, and almost no one disagrees that in exodus it was an angel of God, if not God himself designated as the destroyer and angel .
Or consider 1 Chronicles 21: 15 where we see an unambiguous case of a godly angel designated as a destroying angel this is where David had sinned in the taking of the census issue.
And God sent an angel unto Jerusalem to destroy it: and as he was destroying, the LORD beheld, and he repented him of the evil, and said to the angel that destroyed, It is enough, stay now thine hand. And the angel of the LORD stood by the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite. And David lifted up his eyes, and saw the angel of the LORD stand between the earth and the heaven, having a drawn sword in his hand stretched out over Jerusalem. ..- 1Ch 21:15-16
So back in Revelation 17:8 the angel is about to explain some very interesting details to John about the seven headed beast that John saw, but this entire verse is basically preliminary, it is simply the restating of the characteristics of the beast of Revelation 13 as to clarify that the beast he saw is the same one he saw in a previous vision.
But before we get to new information about the beast, there is one more aspect of this verse that must be covered.
There are a lot of interpretations that even though they might understand that these phrases like “the beast that was and is not and yet, is” is referring to the antichrist’s resurrection. They will say that the tense of these verses make it necessary for the antichrist to have lived before the time of John.
They will say that since John wrote in the late 1st century, the past tense of the word “was” in the first part of the phrase I.E. “the beast that was” means that the beast that will come to live in the future as antichrist, must have lived sometime before the time of John. Common candidates proposed in this scenario are Judas or Nimrod, again they are saying that the beast that is yet to come must have been dead already when john was writing. This I believe can lead to any number of wrong conclusions about the identity of the antichrist.
They fail to see that John consistently uses these phrases like “the beast that was, and is not, and yet is,“ as a title for the beast of his visions, visions in which he sees all the way to the end of knowable time in some cases. Yet he never ceases to refer to everything he sees as having happened in the past. For instance even the New Jerusalem’s decent in Revelation 21, which is almost universally considered to be a future event, must have already descended in the first century, if this was the correct way to view the text because John said “And I John saw [past tense] the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down “. But more to this specific point about the phrases like ”was and is not and yet is,” if you applied it consistently to the other titles that refer to the antichrist resurrection, the theory that the beast must have already existed like Judas or Nimrod would quickly break down.
- The beast that was, and is not, and yet is.
- The beast was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition:
- The first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
- The beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live
- The beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit
So, if we applied this 1st century tense idea to these other passages we must also conclude that the antichrist not only has lived and died by the time of John, but that his wound had to have already been healed in the 1st century as well, as it is also referred to in the past tense by John.
This would of course not be agreed upon by those making this claim, as they would not say that this pre-John character has risen from the dead yet, they would only that he would have already died before john’s time.
The answer here is to realize that phrases like “the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.” or “The beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live” or “The first beast, whose deadly wound was healed. have the same function as being a way to refer to the antichrist, and the event that comes to define not just his life but the entire end times course of events, and the tense being used is the exact tense you would expect from someone who was trying to refer back to an event he saw in a vision that consisted of future events) we will again see proof of this in our last verse today.
We are finally ready to move on to the next verse. I’m going to take verses 9 and 10 together because as we will see, they are kind of a package deal.
So this is when the angel begins to tell us more about the seven headed, ten horned beast
Here is the mind which hath wisdom.
I still haven’t figured out this phrase, or why it is here. It says the same thing earlier when it is talking about the mark of the beast:
Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six. – Rev 13:18
I think it may have something to do with how the next idea should be viewed, but again I am not sure, I bet the answer is somewhere in the Old Testament, but I don’t know. So let’s will move to the next idea in this verse.
The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. And there are seven kings
Now we come to one of the most misunderstood passages in this chapter. You know how I said I have found 90 plus characteristics of Mystery Babylon so far, well most commentators seem to think there is only one, and that is that the city of Mystery Babylon sits on seven hills, which they derive from their interpretation of this verse. Often they will say that this city on seven hills is Rome, which is famous for its seven hills, but it doesn’t stop those who think Mystery Babylon is Mecca or even Jerusalem from claiming that their city also sits on seven hills. The only problem is that this is not what this verse is talking about at all.
There are many ways to show this is true, grammatically, contextually, logically, and by comparing scripture with other scripture.
Let’s start with the grammar.
The key is in this phrase “ And there are seven kings:” this is how it reads in the KJV which I have been doing this study in. Other versions render this with a very important distinction. They say that the seven heads of the beast are seven mountains and the angel further defines these mountains as being seven kings.
Such as the ESV which says:
(ESV) they are also seven kings, five of whom have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come, and when he does come he
You can see the difference. The King James gives us the idea that the angel begins to talk about a totally separate thing when it talks about the kings, where the ESV defines the seven mountains as seven kings and then begins to give further info about these kings which we will look at later…Well…which one is right?
You should know that this difference in translation is not an issue with the Greek texts, like the Textus Receptus or the Wescott and Hort. The Greek texts say the exact same thing here, so it’s not one of those issues. This is simply a matter of translator error.
There is near universal agreement among bible translators that the grammar here is saying that the seven mountains are in fact seven kings. Here we see this is the way it is translated in almost every major English Bible.
When describing the ten horns a few verses later, a similar phrase occurs [deka basileis eisin] There, the KJV and NKJV translate the phrase correctly, without substituting there for they as is done in verse 10.
I am not a Greek scholar, and I would not want anyone to believe me based on my explaining this to you grammatically, so let’s move to showing that the angel is telling us that the seven heads are seven kings by the context of the passage and by comparing scripture with other scripture.
I want to start by reiterating that all the other times in this chapter, chapter 17, that the seven headed beast with ten horns is mentioned. It seems to go out of its way to use phrases that are used back in Revelation 13,
And we saw that the beast in our chapter Rev 17 has many of the same characteristics as the one we looked at in Revelation 13, they both had seven heads, ten horns, they both had names of blasphemy on their heads, they both were referred to by their having been killed yet living, they both have the earth dwellers wonder at them when they see their apparent resurrection, they both have people whose names were not written in the book of life worship them. I know this seems almost obvious, but you should know that the view that the seven mountains are seven hills of a city prevents people from seeing this most basic point.
Our passage goes on to say that one of these heads, which are kings is the same “was and is not” king talked about in Revelation 13 which gets the mortal wound, so Lets flip back to Revelation 13:3 and check it out:
One of its heads seemed to have a mortal wound, but its mortal wound was healed, and the whole earth marveled as they followed the beast. – Rev 13:3
So you see here that one of the beast’s seven heads is referred to as having a mortal wound. This is an exact match with our verse if you are willing to admit that Revelation 17:9 has nothing to do with physical hills in Rome or Mecca or anywhere else. I mean do you really think that one of the hills in Rome is going to be mortally wounded, and then come back to life, and everyone marvels at one of these hills, and begins to worship a hill.
Five of whom have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come:
This will explain how this seven headed beast and its heads work, the question I always had was this: If the seven headed, ten horned beast was supposed to be the antichrist, how come only one of the heads of this antichrist seem to be in view?
The bible un-apologetically disregards the other 6 heads of this beast as basically unimportant, and really only tells us about one of these heads, and somehow both the entire beast and this one specific head are called the antichrist.
Well this verse will explain that issue.
Five of whom have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come: So five of these kings have fallen. “Fallen” among other things, is a biblical term for having died (Exodus 32:28, I Samuel 4:10, 2 Samuel 1:19 , 1 Chronicles 5:10) One is, (presumably currently living in John’s day) and one is yet to come.
The beast is the spirit of antichrist has manifested itself in the form of particularly antichrist-like kings throughout history. In 1 john 2:18 John says:
Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. –1Jn 2:18
These 5 fallen antichrist kings, I believe can be determined using no other tool than the bible:
These would be kings that are biblically obvious types of the antichrist, For example:
Pharaoh during the time of the exodus, or people like Nebuchadnezzar who built an image of himself and forced everyone to worship it or be killed, could be a candidate. Or Nimrod, the first world government leader. Or Antiochus Epiphanies who Daniel spent so much time describing, is clearly a type of antichrist, with his setting himself in the temple and declaring himself to be god.
I am not going to attempt to give you a perfect list of these kings, but I will say that I think they can be determined using the bible alone.
Some people would say that these heads are not physical kings at all but rather kingdoms. They do this by adding a step to the angel’s interpretation of the seven heads of the beast. The angel says the seven heads are seven mountains which are 7 kings, but they will add a step to this, they will say the seven kings are seven kingdoms. They rationalize this by pointing out that in the book of Daniel kings and kingdoms are pretty much interchangeable terms. Often before they will take you to this verse in Revelation 17, they will have you agree to the condition that kings means kingdoms, If you agree, then they will have you flip to Revelation 17 and say “well then, we know that these kings are not kings, but actually seven kingdoms.”
This I believe is not a good way to interpret the bible.
Especially because John is a different writer than Daniel, and he uses the word kings a few times to refer to an obvious individual king, and in Rev 10:11 he even seems to contrast the kings with kingdoms or nations:
And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings. Rev 10:11
But I think the obvious thing is that the antichrist in Daniel, Matthew 24 and parallel passages, 2 Thessalonians, and Revelation is always referred to as a man, he does things that only a man can do, he sits in a temple in Jerusalem and declares himself to be god, he is called a man on several occasions, it says he won’t regard the god of his fathers, I could go on, but my point is that it takes twice as much work to make the antichrist be a kingdom than it does a king. Unfortunately there are entire systems of theology that rely on this kings = kingdoms issue, so you will have people go to great lengths to interpret the bible in allegorical ways to make this kings mean kingdoms.
I would say that the antichrist will be a part of and control specific kingdoms which is important to the book of Daniel and Revelation, but the fact that there is a man that moves and rules those kingdoms is attested to over and over again in scripture.
I will not speculate as to which king was the manifestation of the antichrist in John’s day either, as I honestly don’t know myself, Some speculate Nero, but I have not decided what my view is on this point.
The other has not yet come
This is one that I think we can have more explicit biblical information about. And I will include this phrase as we move on to the final verse that we will be looking at today, verse 11.
So this future king, this future manifestation of the beast, has at least one specific characteristic mentioned here. It “must continue a short space.”
This phrase I believe is strong evidence that the king that is future is the one that has the fatal wound and yet lives, the antichrist head. The head we have been discussing in Revelation 13, the one that so much time is spent on.
This idea of a “short space” is good evidence to that effect.
By far the most talked about time period in prophecy is the 3.5 years in which the antichrist is given to do his thing. It makes reference to this exact time period 7 times in scripture, and talks about the detail of it in many more places. It refers to this 3.5 year period is the following ways:
- 42 months
- 1260 days
- A time times and half of time
It refers to this time period being a “short time” as well, in fact using the exact words used in Rev 17:10 when it says:
Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. – Rev 12:12
The idea that he must continue a short time seems to match up well with the references about the antichrist who has the mortal wound and lives. It says in Revelation 13:5:
And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months. – Rev 13:5
Rarely are characteristics of the antichrist found in only one verse, this idea is backed up in several places.
And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. – Dan 7:25
I would propose that this idea of “short space” is referring back to the short space given for the dragon to continue in Revelation 12 and the 3.5 year period given to the antichrist in Revelation 13. It is also to be noticed that 3.5 years is an extremely short time for a king to rule.
Other people that want to make this future king one that has already been alive in the past, like Nimrod will propose that the yet to come king of Rev 17:10 was Hitler, but Hitler ruled about 12 years.
The reign of antichrist is short because it needs to be short. Jesus said of these 3.5 years which start just as the antichrist declares himself to be god in the temple:
For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened. Mat 24:21-22
And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition. – Rev 17:11
And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition
Notice first the similarity to this phrase and the one we looked at earlier in Revelation 17:8
- Rev 17:8 The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition:
- Rev 17:11 And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven, and goeth into perdition.
The difference here is the middle of these two verses the part about the resurrection, in 17:8 it describes the resurrection as “ascending out of the bottomless pit. “
in verse 11 the part that says “even he is the eighth and is of the seven” is not only, as we will see being used to convey the exact same thing, that is the resurrection portion of his chronology, but it is also giving us more information about this king.
This phrase even he is the eighth, and is of the seven is saying that though there are only seven kings there will be eight reigns, that is, one of these kings will rule twice, the resurrection of antichrist explains how there can be eight reigns and only seven kings, This is almost universally considered to be speaking of a resurrection of one of the dead seven kings to rule twice. In other words he will be the eighth king while never ceasing to be the one of the seven kings.
So this gives gives great credibility to the earlier interpretation that this phrase is a technical title of the beast in revelation 13 and that the “bottomless pit” in verse 8 is a reference to the beasts resurrection, just as the phrase, even he is the eighth, and is of the seven is a reference to the resurrection, and all of it is packaged in an identical word structure, so we can be confident of our interpretation that this is a title of the antichrist that refers to his most identifiable trait, his apparent resurrection.