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Origin and History of the Number 666

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Origin and History of the number 666

2009-04-26 Revision note to readers: In the previous version of this page, the author relied heavily upon the book by Roy Allan Anderson which described the sum of the 36 gods being given to a 37th god. However, recently the author had time to investigate more carefully the book Trail of the Serpent by Murl Vance and discovered within its pages the description that the sum of the 36 gods was given back to the sun god, which was one of the 36 gods involved in creating the 666 number. So, the author has included that information in the material below. This more accurately fits the pattern seen with the Papal count, so is an improvement. Other improvements have also been added, which should facilitate the reader's understanding of the material.


Where does the number 666 come from?  Many have read of it in the Bible or heard of it from other sources such as movies or books, but very few know where it actually comes from or why the book of Revelation speaks about this number with such negative connotations.   Also, what is the ultimate meaning of the number 666? Most people think the number 666 is the number of the devil. Is that true?

Here you can read a brief overview of the history of the number 666, where it comes from, what it means ultimately, and why the book of Revelation speaks so negatively of this number.

The number 666 comes directly from the worship practices of the city of Babylon about the time of the Bible prophet Daniel.  The people of Babylon worshiped gods that were associated with the sun, moon, visible planets of our solar system, and certain of the stars involved with the practice of astrology. The Babylonians were the principle developers of astrology, much of which became the foundation of astrology as we see it practiced by some in modern times.  You might find this web page of interest as it explains some of the thought behind astrology (not all of it is accurate). Wikipedia has an interesting article about Babylonian astrology. For a list of astrological symbols, many of which you probably will recognize as having seen them in the past, click here.

Not all of the work that the Babylonians did was oriented towards astrology. Much good observational and mathematical astronomy was developed by their work. The also did substantial work in the field of mathematics, though their system of representing numbers seems cumbersome. The quality of the work done between 300 BC and the beginning of the Christian era was such that it was not equaled again until the astronomer Copernicus began his work in about the year 1500. They were able to predict lunar eclipses to the exact time of occurrence, first and last visibility and the beginning and end of retrograde motions of the planets Venus, Saturn, Jupiter, Mercury and Mars. They also created a 19 year lunar cycle calendar system that was reasonably accurate. The astronomy was used as the basis for their calendar system and also was used as a means of measuring time, including the passage of time at night. (H. W. F. Saggs, Civilization Before Greece and Rome, Yale University Press, New Haven, pages 236-239). They were quite sophisticated in their mathematical methods and were very practical at the same time.

In the Babylonian worship system, they had 36 supreme gods, and one of these, the god associated with the sun, was supreme over all the other gods. The reason the sun god was considered supreme over all the other gods was because it was considered to be the father of all the other gods. They worshiped these gods for various reasons, such as divination of the future and protection from their gods because they believed that all of them were primarily evil, so they feared them. They did ascribe some positive qualities to some of their gods, particularly the sun god, but overall there was a belief that the gods were evil rather than good.

The Babylonian people believed that numbers had power over the gods they worshiped. Each of the 36 supreme gods was assigned a count number in their system which was used in place of the name of each god (Murl Vance, Trail of the Serpent, pages 26, 27, 72 footnote 2). The count number assigned to each god was based on the power that each god was believed to possess. Therefore, the count number for any particular god represented its rank order among the 36 gods. Do note that some of the gods had several numbers assigned to them in addition to their count numbers.

The Babylonians counted their gods and then added up all of the numbers from 1 to 36. The first god they counted got the number one assigned to it (which was the sun god for the purposes of the counting process), and the second god (the moon god) they counted got the number two assigned to it, and so on up to all 36 supreme gods.  The gods numbered from 3 through 36 were considered the children of the Sun god, which included the various stars and constellations that these gods were associated with. Now, if you have not guessed it by now, the sum of the numbers from one to 36 totals 666, which they assigned to the god associated with the sun. The sun god had several numbers assigned to it, the numbers 1 (used for counting purposes) and 666.  They did the calculation like this:

  1  +  2  +  3  +  4  +  5  +  6  +  7  +  8  +  9  +  10  +  11  +  12
    +  13  +  14  +  15  +  16  +  17  +  18  +  19  +  20  +  21  +  22
    +  23  +  24  +  25  +  26  +  27  +  28  +  29  +  30  +  31  +  32
    +  33  +  34  +  35  +  36 = 666

Here is what Vance said about this:

"In the astrological religion of Babylon, every god had his sacred number or numbers which were often used in place of the god's name.  These numbers indicated the god's place and power among the astrological gods...

"Going deeply back into Babylonian astrology we find the real reason for the sanctity for the number 36.  The Babylonians divided each of the 12 houses in the zodiac into three rooms, making 36 in all.  They then divided the entire remainder of the sky into 36 constellations, and appointed the ruling god of each constellation to rule over one of the 36 rooms of the zodiac.  Since the spirits of the departed were believed to go to and dwell in the stars - a teaching still much alive today, there was therefore not a spirit in the heavens, not a star in the sky which was not represented in the 36 rooms of the zodiac, and to swear by the number 36 was to swear by every god in the heavens above, as well as by all the spirits of the departed.  The 36 gods were called decans because each ruled over 10 degrees of the zodiacal circle and over 10 days of the 360-day year.
"The seven planets or the 7-headed astrological dragon ruled over the 36 decans and over them all, as we have noted, ruled the sun, 'the father of the gods.'  It was natural and inevitable that since the summary number of the numbers from 1-36 is 666, this number (called 'the Grand Number of the Sun), should have been assigned to the sun-god as the cosmic god who not only ruled over all the other gods but also was their heavenly parent.  Herein lies the reason for the 'Solar Seals' in use before the time of Christ as amulets to ward off any evil that might come from the 36 decans."
(Vance, pp. 26, 27)

They feared these gods because they were perceived as evil and they worried that one of them might strike them down sometime. To hopefully prevent this from happening to them, they made amulets with a 6 x 6 matrix of the numbers 1 through 36 on them.  Today we call these numeric matrices magic squares.  The design of the amulets was to achieve a magic purpose, especially protection of the person wearing the amulet.  The amulets had to be as powerful as possible, so in order to increase its power, they arranged these numbers in such a way that the sum of any given row, column, or diagonal is 111, and therefore the sum of all six rows or all six columns was 666.  This was supposed to provide extra protection, including from the god associated with the sun, since this god's sum was present on the amulet.

Here is a statement that explains the need for a person to carry the amulets with them:

"...as to why anyone should use the number 666 lies in the very nature of pagan idolatry, which is ... nothing but disguised demon worship. The principle behind all demon worship is fear, and the worship is nothing more than an effort to placate the evil one. Since in the fear religions, all misfortune, sickness, and death are the result of the operation of evil spirits, the worshiper, knowing by his conduct that he is not on God's side and therefore cannot expect, as long as he continues in open rebellion, to have his prayers for help addressed to God answered, turns to the only other supernatural power available to him, Lucifer himself.

"One characteristic stands out in any of these fear religions: the worshiper ever tries to stay in the good graces of his god by revering or wearing some symbol representing that god. Not only does he offer his most cherished possessions - perhaps his own children - he must ever, to avoid disaster, have on his person some object in which the spirit of his god dwells, he must carry his god around with him. This is the principle behind all charms, amulets, and magical objects ever found in pagan idolatry." (Vance,pages 108-109).

Below is an example of one such arrangement of numbers in a 6x6 matrix of numbers.   Note that any given column, row, or diagonal adds up to 111.  The ancient Babylonians wrote these numbers out on a small clay tablet, and after drying and baking it to make the writing permanent, they would hang it on a support and wear it around their neck.  As long as they carried the amulet with them, they thought that the amulet provided protection because it was believed that the numbers on the amulet and the sum of the numbers, 666, gave them power over all the gods. Thus, by having power over the gods, they could protect themselves against anything the gods might do to them.

6 32 3 34 35 1
7 11 27 28 8 30
19 14 16 15 23 24
18 20 22 21 17 13
25 29 10 9 26 12
36 5 33 4 2 31

The practice of creating amulets with this arrangement of numbers as part of astrology appears to have continued well past the time of Jesus. Archeologists have found amulets with Latin Inscriptions, so we know that the Romans were engaging in this practice.

In summary, the 666 number came about because of the pagan worship practices of the Babylonians and their practice of astrology. They believed that the gods were evil and they were in need of protection from them. Because they also believed that numbers had power over the gods, by wearing the numbers of the gods, they were thereby protected from harm that the gods might do to them. One can be sure that the priests of Babylon profited well from this belief.

In a very real sense, the god numbers carried about on one's person was believed to give them power that they would not ordinarily have. To the worshiper of the Babylonian gods, anyone having such an amulet on himself with the sum reaching to 666 was seen as having power over all the gods and would likely have been regarded with some awe and respect. This power would be seen as great because the person had the sum, 666, on them, which gave that person power over even the highest supreme god, the sun god. It seems likely that having an amulet with a sum less than 666 signaled that the person with that on him did not have authority over the highest god, so they probably never made amulets that way. A person would want authority over even the highest god so that he could control his own destiny and protect himself from evil that any of the gods might do to him.

Note the following points:

  • The count number of each god that was written out on the amulet gave the person power over the corresponding god. For example, having the number 2 written on the amulet gave the wearer of the amulet power over the moon god, which was the god assigned to the count number of 2. The number 1 on the amulet gave the wearer power over the sun god.
  • The power over the gods could be increased by adding up the count numbers of the individual gods. For this reason, each individual row or column or diagonal could be added to 111. The wearer of the amulets could further increase the power they had over the gods by adding up all the rows or columns, which was 6 x 111 = 666. Alternately, they could do the same by adding up the count numbers of all the individual gods, a sum which was 666. By having both of these arrangements on the amulet in the form of the 6 x 6 matrix, it increased the power the wearer had over the gods to the maximum extent possible.
  • The number 666 itself was a symbol of its authority over all the gods, even including the highest of the gods. This is because the number 666 contained the numbers of all the gods that formed the sum and the sum itself was perceived as having power over all the gods.

In Babylonian astrology, the sun god was "the father of the gods" (Vance, page 27), or in other words, it was the founder or creator of all the other gods and the universe. The sun god procreated all and was seen as their heavenly parent. Therefore, in a very real sense, the sun god was the founder of a line of gods, just as lines of kings in Bible times had founders. It is for this reason that the Babylonian gods were counted as one linear sequence from 1 to 36 and the numbers of all the gods were then added together to make one sum, 666. There was only one founder of the line so there was only one sequence of gods to count. Obviously, if there had been more than one line, there would have been several sequential counts that would hane been done and the total would still have come to 666.

When the Bible says that the beast has the number 666, it is telling us several things. These are:

  1. The number 666 was derived from the count and sum of the numbers of the gods and did not stand alone. Without the individual numbers making up the count, the sum, 666, would not exist.
  2. It informs us to begin the count with the founder of each line (starting at 1 for each line) and the sum of all lines is 666.
  3. The "god" who adds his count number to the total and receives the final 666 sum is one who in some special way is going to be perceived as having greater power than the other gods, even having power over all other "gods" because he will have the sum, 666.

As Vance explained on page 27 of his book, the seven heads of the seven-headed astrological cosmic dragon were the seven planets of the sky. The planets in ancient times were the planets visible to the naked eye and also included the sun and moon, but excluded the earth itself (Planets in Astrology). The Babylonians arranged them in order according to the time it took for one rotation for each object across the zodiac, which was in longest to shortest order: Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, and the Moon. Note that the Sun occupied the central position in the list, something to which the Babylonians attached significance (Vance, page 18). The seven planets were considered the cosmos and these were referred to as universal. The word Catholic means universal and originated with astrology rather than the Christian Church (Vance, page 8). Of course, the seven planets were considered to be of one line because the sun was the founder of their line and was the father of all the objects in the sky, including the six other planets and the other 35 gods. Thus, there was one sequence to their count that went from 1 to 36.

One thing that is very important to understand is that while it is true that many of the ancients wrote the number 666 by itself, often without the 36 numbers to be summed, the number 666 does not in any way stand by itself. This is because without the count that is to be summed up, there would be no 666 number. It simply would not exist because that number came about by summing up the individual god numbers. The number symbolized that it had power over all the gods. Without the count, there were no gods to have power over and no sum either. Thus, they must always be understood to come together, even if not explicitly written out that way. In other words, the number 666 can stand for the other numbers, but it should never be considered to be apart from them. It is for this reason that any attempts to explain the number without the count and summation of the numbers of the gods is an incorrect interpretation of the number, its uses and its symbolic meaning. Therefore, while there are titles of the popes whose letters when translated to corresponding numbers do add up to 666, they are not the explanation of the number 666 because that is an attempt to explain the number without the count of the gods that is the foundation and origin of the number itself. Likewise, saying that the number consists of merely the digits 6 repeated three times is also incorrect because that totally voids the count that was the sole reason for the existence of this number.

Make a Note: The number 666 cannot stand alone without the count of the gods because, without the count, there is no sum to 666. You cannot have one without the other. Even when written as a stand alone number, the ancients understood the origin of 666 to be that of the count of the gods. Therefore, any attempt to explain the number 666 without using the count is invalid.

This statement is not just an attempt to insulate you against any other method of calculating the number 666. The simple fact is that without the count of the gods, the number 666 would never have been calculated by the Babylonians or anyone else. Had that not happened, you would never have heard about it in the Bible nor would anyone have found it at archeological sites. It simply would not have existed. Therefore, any method that attempts to explain this number without the count of the gods is false because it omits the source of the number itself and attempts to substitute another source in its place. And that applies to any method of calculating it for the Papacy. It must involve calculation of the count of their gods. You can believe those who promote such beliefs if you wish, for you are always free to believe anything you want, but you will not be believing the truth if you do so.

For an example of an invalid method of calculating 666 in which a false source is substituted for the count of the gods, consider the Papal title, Vicarius Filii Dei, which some claim is the proper interpretation of the number 666. It is true that when you convert the letters of the words Vicarius Filii Dei to numbers, they do add up to 666. But the letters converted to numbers are not the addition of the count numbers of the different individual gods, which is the real source of the number 666, so is an invalid method of calculation. In the Papal system, the corresponding individual gods would be the individual popes. In the instruction in Revelation 13:18, we are told to count the number. There is a very definite reason for this instruction. It is directly telling us that mere addition of a few numbers is not sufficient, but we must do it like the original astrologers did: count the gods and add their count numbers to reach 666.

In the case of the astrologers, they had one founder, the Sun god, and all his offspring as one line of gods, so they should all be counted as one line and the total of the count numbers should arrive at 666. In the case of the popes, there are seven founders because there are seven king lines and an eighth line consisting of one individual, each line of which would have a founder by name. Therefore, the individual kings/gods in each line should first be counted and then each line should be summed from the count numbers. As the final step, the sum of all founding lines of popes should be summed together to arrive at 666.

Below is a table showing how the number 666 is calculated from the Papal title Vicarius Filii Dei, but do remember that this is not the correct way to calculate the number 666, even though it works:

Vicarius Filii Dei Math - Gematria Method using Roman Numeral Substitution for the Letters of the Title



































  53   501
Grand Total: 112 + 53 + 501 = 666

Some might argue that the title applies to the popes and the popes claim to be God, so the title is the source of the numbers of the gods. But, remember that the Babylonians counted and then added the numbers of their gods. Each count number was specific to each individual god and was believed to have power over each specific individual god. The title letter numbers from Vicarirus Filii Dei cannot possibly be construed to represent the same thing. It is impossible.

In the case of the seven heads of the sea beast of Revelation 13 or the scarlet beast of Revelation 17, there are seven lines of kings because there are seven different founder's names. There is an eighth in addition to that which adds to and receives the final total, 666. As a result, there should be seven different counts and when all are totaled, they should add to 665. The seven kings cannot add to 666 because they are not the recipient of the final total. The eighth king must add his count number of 1 to complete the total to 666. Note that in the original Babylonian system, the sun god had a count of one and received the count total of 665 from all the other gods and then added his count of 1 to that to arrive at the final total of 666. The results should look like this for the seven kings in the table below (Papal Count Table):

Papal Count Table
John Paul
Totals as of
John Paul II:


Now, add 1 for the 8th king and the result is: 665 + 1 = 666

The one who receives the number 666, the 8th king, will somehow be perceived as having great power over God, more so than the other kings.

If you want more information about this topic, see some of the links at the bottom of the page.  You may also look for a copy of the book by Roy Allan Anderson called Unfolding the Revelation (revised edition), which explains this topic in some detail.  That book is (or at least has been) published by Pacific Press Publishing Association of Nampa, Idaho.  You likely could find a copy through one of the major online bookstores such as Amazon.com.  Anderson's newer book, Unveiling Daniel and Revelation, does not have this information in it. Another book of very good information about this in much greater detail is called The Trail of the Serpent, by Murl Vance and published by Oriental Watchman Publishing House of Pune, India.  This book is no longer in print. However, you may find a copy of it by checking out some of the online book auctions. I would highly recommend this book over Anderson's book because it goes into much greater detail.

Update on 2008-12-28: The author has received an e-mail from an individual who has purchased all remaining copies of the book Trail of the Serpent, by Murl Vance, from the Oriental watchman Publishing House. You may write him and purchase a copy for £3.50 per copy plus postage. Here is the e-mail address to make arrangements: write to Manjit at manjit01@ntlworld.com. Here is a Currency converter to find out how much £3.50 is in your currency.

You may also order a copy of the book Trail of the Serpent through LLT Productions, a ministry based here in the United States (see bottom of this web page for information). Their product includes Vance's other book, called Breaking the Code of the Secret Societies. Both books are in PDF form on a CD and includes some other materials of interest to readers.

Note tha the author has no financial interest in either service where you may purchase the books by Murl Vance.


What About Manuscript's Of Revelation That Have The Numbers 606 Or 616?

There are several ancient manuscripts of Revelation that show numbers such as 616 or 606 instead of 666.  Apparently one of the copies with the number 616 that has been found is claimed to be older than the other documents with the number 666 on them (according to some - whether this is true I cannot say because I do not have the facts available to me on this). However, there are good reasons to believe that the numbers 606 or 616 were due to scribal errors of some sort that somehow propagated down through additional copies as other scribes copied the earlier manuscripts. A mistake made early in the "life" of the document of Revelation could easily propagate and appear to us as if it is the more correct version, even if it is a mistake.   This is especially likely given that the original meaning of the number 666 was concerned with its magical properties. 

The numbers 616 or 606 had no magical meaning of any significance to the Babylonians, so that by itself should inform the reader that these were due to copy errors.  Remember that people copied things by hand before the invention of the printing press because they did not have copy machines in those days.  If you wanted, a copy of any manuscript and you had the money (and perhaps you could read), you hired somebody to copy it for you or to read it to you.

It seems highly incredible that God would say that the woman in Revelation 17 is Babylon, connect it with the beast, tell us the beast is a god (it is worshiped, which is a clue that it claims to be a god) and then give us the number 616 or 606 instead of 666. Because God modeled the woman after Babylon, there would be absolutely no reason to use the numbers 606 or 616 and every reason to use the number 666. Thus, the numbers 616 or 606 are due to scribal errors regardless of the earlier date of the document.

However, there are additional reasons why neither the numbers 606 nor 616 are the number that were originally written into the book of Revelation. In the quote above from Murl Vance's book, he notes that the "astrological dragon with seven heads" ruled over the 36 decans, the 36 gods of the amulets and constellations, and the sun god ruled over them all, including the dragon. Now, in Revelation 12, note that a seven-headed dragon appears in the sky. Do you think its appearance in the sky is an accident? The astrological dragon of Babylon is very similar to the dragon in Revelation 12, though the dragon in Revelation also has ten horns upon it. Some depictions of the seven headed dragon from some cultures of ancient times also had horns upon them (Vance, page 72). In Revelation 17, it tells us that the scarlet beast with seven heads are also seven kings which are followed by an eighth king. We also learn that the woman is called Babylon. Now, what does all this mean and why does it tell us that the number most likely is 666 rather than 616 or 606?

To understand this, notice the following mathematical facts:

1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 + 8 = 36

1 + 2 + 3 + ... + 35 + 36 = 666

Revelation 17 tell us there are 7 kings followed by an 8th king. Revelation 13 tells us that the number of the beast is 666. We know that the sum of the numbers from 1 through 8 is 36. What is the connection? Perhaps it just happens to work out that way. On the other hand, eight was seen by the Babylonians as a symbol of the universe or the cosmos. It encompassed all. And in some ways, that may be the meaning of the 8th king in Revelation 17, for he encompasses the numeric sum of all the other seven god lines and will encompass and surpass them in power. It is because of the relationship between 8, 36 and 666 and the presence of the number 8 and 666 in Revelation 13 and 17 that we know the number must be 666. There is what is called the triple application theory that is used as a method of interpretation of Bible prophecy. This means that when the Bible gives you two of three things that naturally go together, you usually know what the third item is. For example, in Daniel 3 it tells us that the image Nebuchadnezzar built was 60 cubits in height and 6 cubits in width. It does not state the depth, but it would have been understood by Jewish readers that the depth was also 6 cubits.

In the situation we face in Revelation 13 and 17, we are given the numbers 8 and 666, the name Babylon, and the astrological seven headed cosmic dragon is very nearly identical to the dragon of Revelation 12. All this information makes it abundantly clear that these things are taken from Babylon rather than some other place or time. Thus, we have two numbers, 8 and 666, which fit with Babylon and tells us that the number 36 is the missing term. Because there was no use for 616 or 606 as a magic square sum (or any other independent use) in the Babylonian god worship system, this makes it abundantly clear that the number in Revelation 13:18 must be 666. And, of coures, even though we have a version that has the number 616 on it, we still have other terms that tell us that the number is not 616, but rather is 666. There is the number 8, the cosmic 7-headed dragon, and the name Babylon for the woman. This consistst of three items, making it an even stronger case that the number is 666 rather than 616 or 606.

Now, some have tried to get around this by saying that the numeric value of the name Caesar Nero works out to 616 if one drops the letter "n" at the end of the name to make it Caesar Neron (Hebrew names typically added the "n" to foreign names ending with an "o" ), so they claim this proves the number they have is valid. Of course, this interpretation perfectly fits the preterist theory. But, given the information that there is an 8 and the name Babylon should lead us to sum the numbers from 1 to 8, giving 36, and then sum from 1 to 36, giving 666. This tells us that 666 is the correct number, not 616. However, those wishing to make Nero the beast still have an out because by leaving the "n" at the end of the Hebrew name of Nero, it can then add up to 666 because "n" has a value of 50, so 616 + 50 = 666. The problem with this, of course, is that Nero does not fit all the descriptions of the beast. The beast was said to blaspheme the tabernacle of God, which means it substituted and established its own service for that which God had provided. Nero never did that in the temple of God. Thus, he is not the beast and he is not the person who receives the 666 number.

An explanation of how Nero supposedly fits was e-mailed to me in February of 2009, which is quoted here so you may understand how it is done (I do not know the source of the original material that the correspondent sent to me for he was quoting another unnamed source):

"When I was a missionary in Israel I studied the Hebrew language.  One of the first things that you learn when you study the OT Ancient Hebrew language {Which is also the language of Israel today!} is that the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet ALSO represent 22 numbers!  When you read Psalm 119 you will note that the 176 sentences are divided into 22 sections; each section with 8 sentences or verses praising the Word of God.  These 22 sections are each headed by one of the letters in the hebrew alphabet in the exact same order as shown below.  The ancient Hebrew language {Which is exactly the same as the modern Hebrew language} frequently used the letters of their alphabet to designate NUMBERS IN THE OT as follows:

  • ALEPH=1. 
  • BETH=2. 
  • GIMEL=3. 
  • DALET=4. 
  • HE=5. 
  • VAV=6. 
  • ZAYIN=7. 
  • CHETH=8. 
  • TETH=9. 
  • YODH=10. 
  • KAPH=20. 
  • LAMED=30. 
  • MEM=40. 
  • NUN=50. 
  • SAMEKH=60.
  • AYIN=70. 
  • PE=80. 
  • TSADHE=90. 
  • KOPH=100. 
  • RESH=200. 
  • SHIN=300. 
  • TAV=400.

"These vowel sounds are designated by dots and dashes under their *PRECEDING* consonants.  In Hebrew "N" is added on the end of all foreign names ending in "O".  Therefore, the foreign name of Nero would be "NERON" in Hebrew.  The name Nero Caesar would be pronounced Neron Kaysar in Hebrew.  The "E" in Neron and the 2 "A" sounds in Kaysar are designated by dots and dashes under their preceding consonants and therefore are not letters in the 22 letter Hebrew alphabet, and so have no numerical value.  Neron in Hebrew would use 4 letters with numerical value: N-R-O-N and Kaysar in Hebrew would use 3 letters with numerical value: K-S-R.  There would be a dot under the first N to show the "E" sound in NEron  There would also be 2 dots under the "K" to show the "AY" sound in KAYsar and a dash under the "S" to show the "AH" sound in KaySAr.

"The 4 letters with numerical value in NERON would be {SEE TABLE ABOVE}  N = 50;  R = RESH = 200;  O = VAV = 6; and N = NUN = 50 and 50+20+6+50 equals 306.  The 3 letters with numerical value in "KAYSAR would be K = KOPH = 100;  S = SAMEKH = 60; and R = RESH =200 and 100+60+200 equals 360.  And so the numerical value of Nero in Hebrew is 306 and the numerical value of Caesar in Hebrew is 360, and therefore the numerical value of Nero Caesar is  306+360 or exactly *666*!

"There is a very interesting footnote in the revised Standard Version concerning the number 666 which states that some ancient manuscripts have the number **616** which *DOUBLY* confirms that Nero Caesar may be the Anti-Christ!!  You will note that the Hebrew language adds an "N" to all foreign names ending in "O".  Now "N" or "NUN" in Hebrew has a numerical value of **50**!!  and so if you decided not to add the last "N" in NERON then Nero Caesar would add up to exactly **616** in Hebrew.  I think you will admit that this is an absolutely amazing coincidence!!

"Any honest Hebrew language scholar will confirm that the letters of Nero Caesar's name add up to 666 in the hebrew language whose 22 letters are also 22 numbers as shown above.  Since all of the prophecies concerning the Anti-Christ are written in OT Hebrew {Like Daniel 7:8-25} or NT Koine Greek it would then seem logical that God would use one of these 2 Bible languages to identify the  Name of the Beast whose letters add up to 666.  one of the problems of doing this in NT Koine Greek is that the letters of their alphabet are not also numbers.  And therefore you can only assign a numerical value of 22 to the 22nd letter, etc..  Using this formula you could not get any name to add up to over 250, let alone 666.  You have the same problem with English and all other languages other than the Hebrew language!" (found in an e-mail from a correspondent "R. Schurz" dated February 16, 2009)

While I consider all this very interesting, it is not the way the Babylonians did things. Because God modeled the woman after the Babylonians, this tells me that the method is wrong.

Consider this interesting point. Most people read the description of the woman in Revelation 17 and, if they read it carefully, they should know that she sits upon seven mountains (remember, she does not sit on the back of the beast). Now, they usually associate the seven hills with Rome, though it is true that in history, both Constantinople and Carthage were also built on seven hills. Cities of seven hills are noted all over the world. However, mountains have a special significance in the Bible where they are used symbolically. Many people have concluded that mountains are symbolic of kingdoms based on what they read in Daniel 2 about the rock that is cut out without hands which becomes a great mountain that fills the whole earth. They believe this represents God's kingdom, which it does, but it has another meaning that is embedded in the symbolism that they do not perceive. Mountains and hills are associated with groups of gods in the Bible and in the pagan cultures of those times. The popes claim to be God, so each of the seven kings of Revelation 17 is a line of popes with the same name (such as John Paul or Pius) which consists of two or more popes and is also a mountain which is symbolic of a group of gods. Because the eighth king is not described as a mountain, this tell us that it is singular. It stands by itself in having a unique name apart from the seven and having only one individual in that line. The mountain in Daniel 2 also represents a group of Gods - God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

To learn more about how mountains symbolize a group of gods, Click here to read about that.

It is interesting that The Dictionary of Symbolism by Hans Biedermann – page 228 states:

"The ziggurat structures of ancient Mesopotamia were architectural translations of DIVINE MOUNTAINS; the mountain is…the abode for the gods"

The point of this is that mountains were seen as an abode for a group of gods. They built a ziggurat in Babylon as a symbol of a mountain, so it was a place for the abode of their gods. This same idea is found in the Bible if you look for it, but most never have thought of it and so do not recognize it when they come across it. For more information about ziggurats, click here, here or here .

Many think that the seven hills of Revelation 17 is a literal reference to Rome, so think that this points directly to the Papacy. What most do not know is that the Vatican is actually not built on any of the the original seven hills. Most of it is built on an eighth hill that is the location of the Vatican today and has been ever since about the 1370's. This hill is called Vaticano. However, part of the Vatican is also built on a ninth hill which is called Janiculum. This location was not used prior to that time. You can read more details of this here. Because most of it is built on an 8th hill, it certainly is interesting in light of the parallels between this and the 8th king. But do remember that the 8th king is not a mountain, so the Vatican being built mostly on an 8th hill in no way fulfills prophecy. It, in fact, shows that the Papacy does NOT literally sit on seven hills because it is not on any of the seven hills. It is just near them on 8th and 9th hills.

One more very interesting fact related to this is that there apparently is evidence that the seven hill of Rome were originally named for the seven planets the ancients worshiped (Vance, page 120). Thus, the seven gods of the seven planets were associated with the hills of the city of Rome in its early history.

The numbers 36 and 666 are called summary numbers because they "summarize" the sum of the numbers of the gods. 36 is the summary number for the god numbers 1 through 8, while 666 is the summary number of the god numbers 1 through 36. More commonly they are called triangular numbers. This was an important concept to the ancient Babylonians.

Each god had one or more numbers assigned to it and the sun god not only had the number 666 assigned to it as the sum of the numbers of the 36 gods, but it also had the number 1 assigned to it which was used to help create the sum of the 36 god numbers. The number 2 was assigned to the moon god. The moon god was considered the wife of the sun god, so their most important son was assigned the number 3 and typified all new life, whether plant or animal. The summary number of all three of these gods was 6 because 1+2+3 = 6. As Murl Vance put it, "As the summary number of the father, the mother, and the son, 6 therefore 'embraced all the powers of the three gods.' " (Vance, page 26) Logically, to swear by the number 6 was to swear by the power of all three of these gods. This, of course, was the pagan equivalent of the divine trinity. It seems possible that this may have something to do with the choice of having 36 gods (because 6 x 6 = 36), but there is speculation on my part and there is no evidence of this from archeology. It would be most interesting to know whether that was a factor or not in their reasoning.

The names of our days of the week in English are named after the same gods that occurred on the seven heads/gods of the cosmic dragon. The names of the seven gods/heads on the cosmic dragon were as follows (Vance, page 66):


Planet gods/dragon heads/days of the week names
Planet Names
Babylonian God Names English Day Names
Shamash Sunday
Sin Monday
Nergal Tuesday
Nabu Wednesday
Marduk Thursday
Venus Ishtar Friday
Ninib Saturday


Note that the heads of the cosmic seven headed dragon were believed by the Babylonians to be gods, something that is also true of the seven heads of the beasts in Revelation 13 and 17 because the seven heads are symbolic of mountains, which in the Bible are associated with groups of gods.

Do consider that because the number 616 and 666 appear to work for Nero in Hebrew, is it possible that some scribe deliberately introduced this error into the text in hopes that it would be seen to point to Nero? In such a case, it would not be an accidental error, but deliberate. And there is historical evidence to back up the idea that it is an error that may have been deliberate. Irenaeus reported that there were scribal errors of the number in his time (2nd century AD) and then went on to use the number 666, so this would indicate that 616 is incorrect even though it is found on the earliest fragment of text of Revelation currently known which contains Revelation 13:18 (Number of the Beast, Against Heresies). Ireneus ought to have known the correct number because when he was young, he was a pupil of Polycarp, who in turn was a pupil and friend of John who wrote the book of Revelation (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polycarp). An early edition of an error is still an error, even if it predates all other known versions.

Finally, note that because of the things in Revelation 13 and 17 that clearly point to Babylon as their source, we can know with confidence that the number of the beast is 666. In no way is there a method to arrive at 616 or 606 and have an 8th king as part of the package given the facts about astrology and Babylon that historians and archeologists know today. Therefore, one must conclude that the numbers 616 or 606 are due to scribal error and nothing more. The age of the document that these numbers were found on is irrelevant. A mistake, no matter how old, is still a mistake, even when propagated down through additional copies.


Why does the book of Revelation Speak against Babylon and the Number 666?

When the Medes and Persians conquered Babylon (539 B.C.) they came with their own religious practices and gods, so had no need of the priests of the Babylonian religious system.  Although the Persians were somewhat sympathetic towards the Babylonian god Marduk and apparently accommodated the priests of this god for a while, it appears from history that eventually they simply fired the whole crew of priests and installed their own. What scholars do know is that eventually the Babylonian priests left Babylon for a new location, probably because they were out of a job, though the exact reason why they left Babylon apparently is unclear.

Therefore, these Babylonian priests, apparently being without a livelihood, began to look for more fertile ground to work. They found it in the city of Pergamum, which was a city in what is now Western Turkey with no port or major industry at that time except education.  It was a city of the universities of its day where students came to learn medicine and law. Soon after leaving Babylon, the Babylonian priests added their religious schooling to the educational institutions available in Pergamum. Clearly, they saw it as a progressive move.  There was a major library there, with some 200,000 volumes, so it obviously was a good place for any university to be located.

To help you get a feel for the location of Pergamum, look at the Map of Asia Minor during the time of the Greeks and Romans. This is a large map and may take a minute or two to load.  You should be able to find Pergamum on the northwest end of Asia Minor in an area known as Mysia just a little to the south across the strait from a region known as Thrace.  If you look carefully, you should also be able to see the locations of some of the other cities mentioned as part of the seven churches in Revelation, such as Ephesus, Thyatira, and Laodicea.

Some of the Babylonian priests did not go to Pergamum, but instead went to Egypt where they taught their religious practices to the Egyptians.  The Egyptians readily picked up the Babylonian religious concepts and further extended and developed some of the ideas that are found in astrology even today.  They also picked up the idea of the 36 supreme gods from the Babylonians along with the number 666 as the sum of the 36 god numbers which had power over all the gods, especially the most powerful of them, the sun god.

The teaching of the Babylonian religious practices by the Babylonian priests and their direct descendants went on in the city of Pergamum for centuries afterwards.  They taught astrology (which likely included the science of astronomy) and making the amulets with the numbers 1 to 36 on them in the special arrangements they commonly used.  They built a large complex as part of their worship system, which you can view a model of by clicking here.  This continued until about the year 133 B.C, at which time the last king of the Attalid Empire, who had his capital at Pergamum, died, and in his will he gave his kingdom to the Romans.  After putting down a small rebellion, the Romans easily took over the Attalid Empire by 129 B.C. 

When Alexander the Great came through the region, much of the knowledge of astronomy and astrology that the Babylonian priests possessed was passed on to the Greeks.

Sometime relatively soon after the Romans took over the Attalid Empire, the priests who were still teaching the Babylonian religious practices in Pergamum saw their opportunity, packed their bags and took a ship to Rome.  The Romans often adopted the religious practices of other cultures, something that went a long way towards helping their empire survive as long as it did.  The Babylonian priests rightly calculated that the Romans would be very willing to learn and follow their teachings.

The Babylonian priests set up shop in Rome and began teaching the Romans about their religious practices.  Soon all of Rome was filled with their religious teachings and practices.  It eventually became so pervasive that people called Rome the new Babylon.  It is for this reason that many teach that references to Babylon in Revelation is in fact a code word for Rome.  Of course, some will dispute this, but for more information see is Babylon a symbol for Rome?

Eventually, when the Christian Church came along, the practices and beliefs of the Babylonian religion followed right into the church.  Historians have noted that at one point it seemed almost the entire city of Rome converted virtually overnight to Christianity, but what actually happened is the Babylonian religion was simply brought into the church and the three supreme gods of the Babylonian religion were renamed as God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.  Other lesser gods became saints of the church.  The pagan Babylonian religious practices came into the church right along with it, including the practice of making amulets with the 36 god numbers on them.  This made it easy for the followers of the Babylonian religion to "convert" to Christianity, but it certainly was not a genuine conversion.  Because of the movement of pagan religious practices into the Christian church, God condemned the church in Revelation by referring to it as Babylon.  God condemns pagan religious practices, but in spite of that, they brought these practices into the church anyway.

Here is what Vance said about this:

"Though the early church leaders showed themselves strongly oposed to Gnosticism, many scholars point out that it was later embraced by the Church. Montfaucon [a Catholic scholar quoted by Vance] tells us that demon worship was carried on in the early church by those claiming to be bishops of Jesus Christ, and the Gnostics, as we have already seen, combined the worship of the serpent with the worship of Christ, they combined elements from the Babylonian, Persian, Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Hebrew, and Christian religion into the universal or catholic system which embraced all others. It is but natural that they should take over, also, the summary number which includes in its mystic embrace the whole circuit of the heavens and all its gods, the number 666, the secret and most sacred number, we believe, in all paganism." (Vance, page 113)

Here is an example of pagan religious beliefs being incorporated into the very heart of the Papacy. Look at the picture of the artist's painting of the Papal throne (from the Vatican Museum) and note the zodiac symbols above the throne. Why are these symbols present above the pope's throne? During Medieval times, the zodiac symbols were carved into the Papal throne (Vance, page 22), though whether that remains true today, I do not know. One has to wonder why the zodiac, which are clearly pagan symbols, would be carved into the throne of the ruler of the Catholic Christian Church?

I have no evidence that the Papal thrones have the zodiac on or around them in modern times, but there is clear evidence that they once did have such signs associated with them. The Papacy itself has verified this (Vance, page 89, quoting from the frontispiece of Di Fortuna, published under the auspices of Pope Clement VII).

If you want more information about this, go to google.com and type in the key words "Papal throne zodiac". Also see the links at the end of this web page.

The church in Rome seems to believe that it can bring things into the church that are pagan in origin, make them holy and therefore make them acceptable to God. However, the Bible teaches that only God is holy and only he can make things holy.

In the Bible, we can read of a situation where Nadab and Abihu on their own tried to offer fire that was unsanctified by God. The result was that they paid for it with their lives. You can read the story in Leviticus 10. There were several points that God made about this incident. First, God said to make a distinction between that which is holy and that which is not holy (Leviticus 10:10). Here is a statement by God concerning distinguishing between the common (the word profane means "common") things that are unholy and the holy:

Eze 22:26 Her priests have violated my law, and have profaned my holy things: they have put no difference between the holy and the common, neither have they shown difference between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them.

Second, the event is described in these verses:

Lev 10:1 And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took each of them his censer, and put fire in it, and put incense thereon, and offered unholy fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not.
Lev 10:2 And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD.

Note that the fire which was offered was fire that God had NOT commanded them to do. For that they died. Now, it may seem that God was very strangely particular in this case, but he had a reason for it. The Bible says very plainly that we are not to offer in our worship that which God has not commanded. This clearly means that only God can make something a part of worship to him. No priest, no pope, no bishop, no conference president, no human being of any stature can make something holy and cannot rightly bring something to worship God which God has not commanded without suffering the consequences. Those consequences may not come now, but they will eventually. God means what he says. Therefore, when God said that he condemned the pagan religious practices, that plainly means they should not be brought into the Christian Church. God will not accept such worship. No human, no matter how "holy", can change that.

In Ezekiel 22 it is clear that the priests of the Jews thought that they could bring common things into the temple (the church of their day), make them holy, and that would make them acceptable to God. Clearly, God says they calculated wrongly. If the Jews could not make pagan things holy, and remember, they were God's people, then how can the Christian Church expect that it can do any better today?

Some may say, "but those things happened in the Old Testament. We are in the new dispensation, so the things of the old Testament do not apply." If that is true, then consider that God is not fair. He holds the people of the Old Testament to one standard and the New Testament era to a different standard. Why would he do that when it is clearly unfair? Is God unfair?

In the Vatican there is a statue of what is supposed to be Peter. However, that is not what it originally was sculpted to be. The original design of it was to represent the Roman god Jupiter (some say it is the god Saturn and I am not sure which it is). You can see an image of it here. Consider that many Catholic Pilgrims every year kiss the feet of the Roman god Jupiter, thinking they are kissing the image of Peter (see Links below on Historical Pictures of Christianity). These people are ignorantly kissing the feet of a pagan god idol. What do you think God thinks of this when he spoke so strongly against pagan idols? Do you honestly think he approves of this?

Ultimately, there are a number of things in the Catholic Church which trace back to the Babylonian religious practices. Many Catholics do these things ignorantly, of course, not knowing that God does not approve of them. But, I believe that God will be fair and just for these individuals and overlook their ignorance, but God still does not approve bowing to an image.  In ancient Israel, they also brought pagan practices into their "church" (synagogue), but in spite of the evident belief among them that this made these practices safe to bring into the synagogue, God condemned this practice.  Why would it be any different for the Christian Church today?  Has God changed (consider Malachi 3:6 -  For I am the LORD, I CHANGE NOT therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed) ?

Who is the supreme authority in this universe? God or the pope?  It appears the Catholic Church thinks the Pope is because it long ago dropped the commandment against the making of, bowing to or worship of images, from the list of the Ten Commandments.  However, a long time ago God told Isaiah.

Isa 48:11  For mine own sake, even for mine own sake, will I do it: for how should my name be polluted? and I will not give my glory unto another

Look at that phrase again, "I will not give my glory unto another".  It seems unlikely this is speaking of the light that surrounds the presence of God, of that we may be sure.  Verses around this text speak of the great power of God as creator and his ability to foretell the future, so it strongly suggests that it is speaking of his power, his authority, and most of all, his position in the universe as its designer and creator.  The Popes have usurped that authority and claimed they have the right to interpret or change the Law of God.  When the Catholic Church claims it has the authority to change the Law of God, is this not a claim that the Church has an authority at least equal (if not greater) with God?  Consider again, about what God says, "I will not give my glory unto another."  Something we need to think about very carefully.

Many individuals in the Catholic Church are genuine Christians who will be in heaven, but it is also true that as a religious system, God condemns it because it is a conglomeration of paganism and Christianity.  It mixes truth with error. So, do not mistake the destiny of the individual member of that church for the destiny of the system of which they are a part.  They are not necessarily synonymous.  God loves all people everywhere and wants to save everyone if at all possible. He will do everything possible to save people, but not all will choose salvation and some will be lost as a result of their choice.

Someday very soon God will call all genuine Christians out of this system so that they will not have to suffer the same fate that is going to come to the system as a whole.  The end of this world is near and God tells us in the Bible that this system, along with all other forms of evil in this world, is soon to be the subject of the judgments of God.  To prevent the destruction of good people along with those who do evil, God will call those who will follow him to come out of Babylon:

Rev. 18:1-4  And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory.

And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.

For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.

And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.

Note that Revelation 17 portrays a woman that symbolizes Babylon and it says she is the mother of harlots, which clearly indicates she has daughters.  There are many who believe that a woman in Revelation symbolizes a church, so this woman of Revelation 17 symbolizes a corrupt church.  The Catholic Church is the only church that claims it is the mother church, so, the daughters must be the protestant churches that will corrupt themselves by joining with Babylon at the end and by doing the same thing the mother did - commit fornication with the kings of the earth.  Therefore, this call will apply to God's people within the protestant churches as well.

The only way to salvation is through Jesus, for Acts 4:12, says, speaking of Jesus, "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved."  Note that Peter, whom the Catholic Church claims was the first pope, spoke these last words.  The Catholic Church also claims the right to determine salvation for other people.  Nevertheless, here Peter himself declares it is Jesus alone who saves. The Pope or the church cannot save you.  And even if Peter were a pope, in this verse he declared that he himself could not save you. Many of God's people are in the Catholic and Protestant churches and He is calling all to return to worshipping him the way He approves.  Look to Jesus and His word (the Bible) for direction and help for this because He is the sole source of salvation.  He will help you if you sincerely ask Him and are willing to follow where He leads.  Jesus gave His life for you. It cost him everything, so He is very willing to help.  Consequently, you can trust Him to lead you in the right path.  Please choose to follow Him wherever He leads.  You will not be disappointed in the end.

Now, the Bible speaks of the number 666 is very serious tones. Probably the most serious warning in the Bible is in connection with the mark of the beast and the number 666 (see Revelation 14). The reason the Bible speaks negatively about the number 666 is that it symbolizes the power of the person who has that number to have power over all the gods, which in the case of the Papacy is their claim to be God and to have authority over God and his law, all of which are false claims. Because the popes claim both to be God and to have authority over God and his law, this empowers them to believe that they can change the law of God to suit their own purposes. God sees this as very serious and knows it will lead many to be lost for all of eternity because the claims are false. So, for this reason, he warns against this power and calls his people to come out of that church. The time will come when God will make this call very loud and clear so that his people will come out of it. That will be their last opportunity to escape the punishment that is about to come upon that church.

The Catholic Church has long made the claim that they have power over God and his law and to be the only legitimate Christian Church. This claim is based upon their claim of apostolic succession in which they teach that their authority traces all the way back to Peter and Jesus. This is based on succession of the office of the pope that they believe extends back to Peter. Here is the basic idea as described in Wikipedia:

"Apostolic succession is usually described as the official authority that has been passed down through unbroken lines of successive bishops beginning with the original Apostles selected by Jesus, or on a similar basis. Put another way, bishops (in churches subscribing to the doctrine) are only created bishops by other bishops; thus, every bishop today is the end of an unbroken line of bishops, extending all the way back to one (or more) of the Apostles, through which authority descends." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostolic_succession)

The claim that churches which do not have this succession cannot be legitimate Christian Churches and do not have the ultimate authority that they, the Catholic Church, has. It is an argument that clearly has a powerful appeal to many. There are a few other churches besides the Catholic Church which claim to have Apostolic Succession such as the Orthodox Churches, so this is not an exclusive claim of the Catholic Church. However, the Catholic Church is the only church that has taken this to its ultimate extreme because they are the only church that claims to have changed God's ten commandment laws.

Ultimately their claim to have power over God and his law is based on the idea of apostolic succession. Now, what does this have to do with the number 666?

Many have argued that the number 666 is correctly derived from converting the letters of a Papal title to the number 666. While this does work, there is good reason to believe that it is not the method God had in mind for deriving the number when he gave it to John. There are several reasons for this. First, it is clear that the original 666 number was derived from a direct count of the gods. Anything that deviates from that runs the high risk of not being the method God had in mind because he obviously patterned the woman and the beast and other things in Revelation 13 and 17 after Babylon. Second, there is the matter of the apostolic succession in relation to the ultimate meaning of the number 666.

As stated above, the ultimate meaning of the number 666 when applied to the beast is that it is the sign of their claim of authority over God and his law. But it is also true that the Catholic Church points to the apostolic succession as the source of their authority, which they have used as the foundation for their right to change God's ten commandment laws. Consequenetly, the apostolic succession idea is, in essence, a sign of their claim to authority over God and his law. Thus, this connects the apostolic succession and the number 666 together. In other words, it connects the number 666 and the apostolic succession together because both of these are a sign of their claim to authority over God and his law. Perhaps you can think of it something like this if you borrow from mathematics to represent the relationships:

sum to 666 = sign of authority over God and his law

apostolic succession = sign of authority over God and his law

Conclusion: apostolic succession = sum to 666

What this tells you is that somehow the apostolic succession is related to the derivation of the sum of numbers to 666. How is it related? Well, the fact is that the number 666 was calculated, as shown above, by counting the god numbers of a founder of a group of gods and all of his line and then adding these count numbers together to reach 666. In the case of the apostolic succession, you have a group of popes that succeed one another, supposedly going back to Peter. Because they are clearly related as shown above, then in some way, to arrive at the sum of 666, you must count the popes and add their count numbers to reach 666. You do that by counting the popes in the different lines of the apostolic succession, where different lines are defined by a new founder's name. You can know that the final pope line, the 8th king, will receive the final sum, 666, because in Revelation 13:18 it is clear that the number is applied at the end of the world when the 8th king is in power. You can then work out the math as shown in the Papal Count Table.

The point of all this is that the gods to be counted to reach 666 come from the popes in the apostolic succession line and will reach 666 with the final 8th king. This ties them all together.

The fascinating aspect of the Papal Count system is that the apostolic succession is the foundation of their claim to power. They can neither hide their claims about the apostolic succession nor hide from the count of the popes because these are openly available in history books world wide. Further, were they to deny the count of their popes, it would be the same as denying the foundation of their apostolic succession. Thus, when God points to this, he is directly pointing to the source of their claim to power and is something that they cannot escape without destroying the foundation of their claim to power. It marks them because of the meaning of this symbol and because they do make such claims. Therefore, it is a powerful identifying mark, especially when combined with other characteristics of the beast.


For Review: What Is the Real Source of the Number 666?

As discussed before, there are those who believe that the Papal title Vicarius Filii Dei is the real source of the number 666. And there are those who believe that the number is merely a triple six, or in other words, three sixes in a row because they believe that this represents the ultimate sign of evil that this power represents. This idea comes about because they think that 6 is the number of man, which they consider a sign of evil, and a triple six is just the Bible's way of emphasizing the great evil of man in the beast system. Perhaps this appears to not be a bad idea, but it is wrong because it totally ignores the real source of the number and the way it is to be counted.

There is another problem for those who believe in the triple six theory, the theory that 666 is merely a set of three sixes and does not represent six hundred sixty six as a sum. Their idea is that 6 is the number of man. But the Bible says that the woman is Babylon and the number 666 is the number of beast, of which the woman is a constituent part. Thus, this points not to a Biblical definition of the number 666 or 6 by itself as they wish to do so that the number is just 6-6-6. In the Babylonian system, the number 6 was representative of the trinity because it was the sum of the numbers 1 + 2 + 3 = 6. In their thinking, the ultimate meaning of this number, 6, was that it was the number of the serpent, meaning specifically that they were ultimately worshiping Satan! (Vance, page 93) Because this number, 6, represents the serpent, then 6-6-6 is certainly a sign of the great evil that applies to the beast. However, the problem with this is that the number cannot be a triple six because the beast and Satan are two different powers and are represented as two different beasts in Revelation 12 and 13. They are separate entities so should not be confused with one another. Thus, this creates a dilemma that cannot be resolved except by realizing that the number 666 is not 6-6-6, but rather a sum representing the number six hundred sixty six. This allows us to realize that the number is that of the beast rather than the number of the dragon, which matches what the Bible tells us rather than matching popular opinion.

For those who believe that the number comes from a Papal title, they have a problem. It is known that in ancient times names were often summarized with a number just as is done with the title Vicarius Filii Dei. Even the Babylonians sometimes did that. It was not uncommon for archeologists to find that people wrote a number in place of a name in some of the ancient cultures. The Gnostics in Egypt were famous for writing the number 666 on their documents, which some believe is a substitute for the name of something. The problem with all this is that God said that the woman in Revelation 17 is Babylon and the number 666 is the number of the beast. The woman is a part of the beast because the beast is defined in Revelation 13 and 17 to be the combination of the woman and the kings of the earth. There is no evidence in history or the Bible that the number derives from the kings of the earth, so the number must come from the woman. Because the woman is said to be Babylon, therefore, in order to correctly derive the number, the number must be derived the same way the Babylonians did it. Because the number 666 exists only because of the count of the gods and was never a stand alone number, the number when applied to the woman must be done by counting the gods. Because the woman represents the Catholic Church, how do you count the gods in the Catholic Church?

Of course, some would say that there are no gods in the Catholic Church, but that is not true. Some of the popes have claimed to be God and to have power over his laws (other popes have never refuted that claim), so therefore, they are the gods that are in the symbolic woman. Because these are the gods in the woman, it is logical that one must count them to count the gods to arrive at the number 666. Adding up the letters of a title converted to numbers or just writing three sixes in a row will not fulfill that method because they have never been considered gods. You must count individual popes and add up the count numbers to correctly do this.

The point of all this is that it is irrelevant how or why the Gnostics, the Romans, or any other culture (other than the Babylonians) wrote the number 666. The only way that is relevant is how and why the Babylonians wrote the number 666 because God tells us that the woman is Babylon and we know that was the source of the number. If one refuses to do it as the Babylonians did it, then one is voiding the clear instruction that God has given us concerning the source of the number. If God had intended us to see it derived from another source, then he would have told us that the woman was perhaps Egypt (for the Gnostics) or some other indication so we would know that the number was to be derived from another source. But saying that the woman is Babylon limits the source of the number to Babylon. Therefore, because the Babylonians used this number only in connection with the count of the gods, we must conclude that the count of the gods is the only correct way to derive it.

As a result, the Papal title Vicarius Filii Dei or the triple six theory are both wrong. Both of them essentially posit that the number is a stand alone number that has nothing to do with the count of the gods. Both fail to understand the source or significance of the sum, 666, and both fail to understand that without the count, the number 666 would never have been heard of by anyone. It simply would never have existed. For these reasons, there is no other method other than counting the gods that gives you the true method for deriving the number.


Final Comments

In summary, as we have seen, the number 666 was derived in Babylon by counting gods who were part of a line of gods with one founder. Each of them has a count number that is part of the sum towards the number 666. Each of their numbers was believed to hold power over that particular god. The sum, 666, was believed to hold power over the father of all the other gods, the sun god, and this gave the holder of that sum ultimate power over all the gods because the sun god was the most powerful god and because the sum contained the numbers of all the individual gods. Thus, possessing the number 666 was a sign of their ultimate authority over even the most powerful god. Likewise, for God to say that the beast has the number 666 is to say two things: first, that there is a count of gods involved, and second, that it is a sign of their ultimate claim to power over God himself and his law, a claim that ties the number into the apostolic succession from which the number is derived.

Hopefully this helps you understand the origin and purpose of the number 666. It is not the devil's number, but rather the number of the beast. It is a number that tells us quite a bit about the 8th king and how he will behave at the end in his attitude towards God and his law.

The Links below provide additional information. 

To see amulets and several arrangements of the 6 x 6 magic square, click here and go about 90% of the way towards the bottom of the page.

This is a web page with pictures of the amulets and the 6 x 6 magic square.  This page is part of a web site showing Historical Pictures of Christianity.  This an excellent web site that describes how paganism entered the Christian Church at Rome.

Alexander Hislop's book, The Two Babylons, documents the movement of paganism into the Christian Church.  You can read it online. This is not the most reliable book as the author made some historical errors.

Here is some information about the history of Babylon.

Here is some information about the religion of Babylon and Assyria.

For more information about the Papal throne and the zodiac being carved into it and associated with it, click on these links:

A source of rather interesting information on the city of Pergamum is on the introduction of this web page.  The remainder is a Commentary on the text in Revelation relating to Pergamum.  History of Pergamum.

Information on the history of how the Babylonian religion transferred to Rome.  Amazing Discoveries (look for the page called Mark of the Beast - to find it, either search for "mark of the beast" or "pergamum" or click on the tab at the top of their web page titled "Bible Controversies", then click on "The Antichrist Identified", then click on "The Mark of the Beast").

Would you like to know more about what the Papacy has said regarding the powers it has?  Papal Documents!

The number 666 has some interesting mathematical relations to other numbers that has nothing whatsoever to do with Revelation and everything to do with mathematics. 

LLT Productions Home Page (To obtain the book, Trail of the Serpent, by Murl Vance, from them on a CD, click on "Products" at the top of the page, then click on the left side on Occult/Symbolism under Books/Literature. On the page that comes up, look for and click on Breaking the Code of the Secret Societies, by Murl Vance (Book). There you may place an order for the combined product in PDF form of both the books Trail of the Serpent and Breaking the Code of the Secret Societies, by Murl Vance, which come with some additional materials).

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