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Revelation Serie Part 10 – Babylon
The great sign chapters of the book of Revelation introduce us to the major players of the end time. It is crucial that we familiarize ourselves with these because they instruct us in truth and warn us of things to come. Some of the “things to come” are just around the corner or, more correctly, nearly on top of us. In this study we shall consider the subject of Babylon and surprisingly, John’s oracle devotes two whole chapters to this subject. This means that it holds great importance and significance and we should “wake up” to it. Shaun Willcock writes, “The black arts flourished; astrology, witchcraft and in fact all satanic occult practices were developed in Babylon.
Chapter seventeen deals with the spiritual roots of Babylon and chapter eighteen with its commercial and political roots. In both cases the child of God is to “Brexit” Babylon for entanglement in its intrigues will pollute and destroy one’s relationship with the God of heaven. The Bible warns that, “Friendship with the world is enmity with God” (James 4:4). The world is Babylon and those who love it are the enemies of God. John also warns of getting entangled with the world as its lust will destroy one’s spiritual life (1 John 2:15-17). He in fact tells us that the world is “passing away” and so God has no inclination then to rehabilitate it. Like the Titanic, it is severely broken and will sink! We are looking for a new heavens and a new earth wherein righteousness will dwell (2 Peter 3:16). There are far too many Christians involved with the world or seeking to repair it. Our ministry is to infiltrate and penetrate the world with the Gospel of Jesus and thereby call people out of it. In fact Christians in the New Testament are named as the “called out ones.” We are to be in it but not of it!
This is the teaching of Revelation 17. John sees a Woman wearing purple and scarlet and she is called:
MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT,
THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE
ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
This woman is sitting aside the Beast who rules the ten regions of the world. She is wealthy, has committed fornication with the rulers of this earth and, masquerading as Christian, has persecuted the Church and even murdered the saints. This is precisely why John marvels. Could it be that a pseudo form of Christianity will arise to resist the real Church of the Living God. The answer is, yes.
This woman, unlike the woman of Israel in Revelation 12, is a seductress and therefore deceives the whole earth with her mystical practices that come from Babylon, the source of all that is wicked and confusing. She is actually mentioned in Zechariah 5:5-11. Here a woman of great wickedness is seen in a basket that is taken to Babylon. Being sealed with a lead cover over the mouth of the basket she has mysteriously deceived the whole earth. That is, her true nature and identity has been hidden. Two angelic beings take her to Babylon and place the basket on an altar there. Meaning, that at the right time the lead seal will be removed and she will come forth for all to see and she will openly deceive the nations with her occultism and wickedness.
It is to be noted that she will collaborate with the Beast of the end time in such a way that she will encourage his plan and determination to usher in global government but in the end the Beast, seeking to present Himself as god, will turn on her and burn her with fire. This I believe is apostate Catholicism coupled with apostate Protestantism. The one supplants the truth and the other denies the truth and both are friends of the world. Also, this apostate entity has become drunk with the blood of the saints throughout the ages. This is true! Many of the great saints of old, like William Tyndale and John Huss, were burnt at the stake for simply translating the Bible into the vernacular of the common people.
However, the chapter lays special emphasis upon her coming relationship with the Beast or Antichrist. It is here, in this chapter, that the identity of the Beast is alluded to in that he is part of seven empires of which six have come. The seventh is the Beast Empire, which is short lived after his death, but then he comes back as the eighth but obviously is of the seven. All this means, as we said in our last study, that the Beast has already reigned on the earth. His “calling card”, as it were, is his hatred for the true Church and for the Jews and his delight in all things dark, occultic and wicked because he comes from the bottomless pit! Daniel states that he will serve a god of war (Daniel 11:37-38). We have been warned!
Chapter eighteen warns against getting embroiled in the glitter and sparkle of Babylon in terms of what it has to offer as regards the accumulation of things. Babylon here, in this chapter, is now reflected in the world system, which constitutes a huge and bigger entity than the original Babylon. The proto-type, recorded in Genesis 11, was united in its rebellion against God and attempted to “outshine Him”, as it were, by building a huge tower. Again, this is much like the building of the Titanic that was heralded as unsinkable and a tribute to the idea that man was in charge of the world, the centre of all things, and not the God of the Bible. The same thing happened in the 1960s, 1970s and 80s where the rapid advancement in all areas of human endeavor led many to claim that God was dead. Humankind was the master of its destiny. In other words, Babylon, with all its shine and sparkle was god.
Babylon is a disease of the heart in that it encourages the believer to place the accumulation of things before the worship and love of God. When we crave things and bow down before them we worship Satan! There are many good, clean living, church going people who are trapped in Babylon. That is, they love something else more than they love Jesus. The passage acknowledges this sad reality because if calls upon God’s people to come out of Babylon (Revelation 18: 4). If this spiritual malady is not corrected there will come a day when Babylon will fall with the souls of men (Revelation 18:13). Indeed, the God of the Bible is determined to take it down. Once the world unites under a global government God will take it down just like He did the Tower of Babel.
Some have tried to suggest that Babylon here in Revelation 18 is the United States of America. It is not because the USA has never been guilty of “the blood of the prophets and saints, and all who were slain on the earth” (Revelation 18:24). This is a reference to something far bigger and more sinister, in that it refers to the world system that includes the practice of false religion and the occult. Come out of her My people lest you also receive her plagues (Revelation 18:4).
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