Revelation Chapter 18: 9-20
“The kings of the earth who committed fornication and lived luxuriously with her will weep and lament for her, when they see the smoke of her burning, 10 standing at a distance for fear of her torment, saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! For in one hour your judgment has come.’
11 And the merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her, for no one buys their merchandise anymore: 12 merchandise of gold and silver, precious stones and pearls, fine linen and purple, silk and scarlet, every kind of citron wood, every kind of object of ivory, every kind of object of most precious wood, bronze, iron, and marble; 13 and cinnamon and incense, fragrant oil and frankincense, wine and oil, fine flour and wheat, cattle and sheep, horses and chariots, and bodies and souls of men.
14 The fruit that your soul longed for has gone from you, and all the things which are rich and splendid have gone from you, and you shall find them no more at all. 15 The merchants of these things, who became rich by her, will stand at a distance for fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, 16 and saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city that was clothed in fine linen, purple, and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls! 17 For in one hour such great riches came to nothing.’ Every shipmaster, all who travel by ship, sailors, and as many as trade on the sea, stood at a distance 18 and cried out when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, ‘What is like this great city?’
19’They threw dust on their heads and cried out, weeping and wailing, and saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city, in which all who had ships on the sea became rich by her wealth! For in one hour she is made desolate.’ 20 ‘Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you holy apostles and prophets, for God has avenged you on her!’’
First of all, once again thanks for your prayers and emails while I was recovering from surgery. I am back to preaching, back to work, and as you can see, back to Revelation. While I was away, the Lord gave me the strength to listen to an entire lecture series on Daniel. I was able to go through the book verse by verse over the course of a 20-hour lecture and learned a lot that I hope to incorporate into our final exploration into the book of Revelation.
We are on the cusp of the Rapture. I know that many have been saying that for decades, and yet we are still here. But so much has happened and is happening around us that we need to take note and be ready. Look up, the trumpet sound is near.
Babylon’s Merchandise Revelation 18:9-13
Babylon was a city (an idea really) that everyone was involved in commerce with, especially the rich and the governments of the world. I want to remind you that Babylon is a system and will one day be centered in a city again. But this system has lived since its rise in Genesis 11.
In the plains of Shinar, the people built a tower that would reach Heaven. They had no intention of worshipping the Lord. They were setting up a religion without God, in defiance of His place and power, in spite, knowing that He was not a God to be challenged, the Great Flood not being too far back in their History. This religion of Babylon has been around from that day.
As we know, God confused the languages of the people and separated them; but as we get closer and closer to the end, the world has become one again with English as the universal language. And as God said, nothing the people determine to do can be stopped except by an act of God (Genesis 11:6-7).
Notice that Babylon has riches (see Revelation 18:11-13) and that the merchandise includes the sale of slaves pictured in the last phrase, the “bodies and souls of men.”
Just a week or so ago, we saw first-hand the burning of Notre-Dame Cathedral. That ‘church’ building alone had billions of dollars of artifacts and treasures in it that had to be rescued, and this is only one building. That one historic site receives over 13,000,000 visitors per year; that would be almost the entire Province of Ontario visiting that facility each year. These visitors purchase artifacts, leave offerings and spend money that goes into coffers of the Catholic Church. Again, this is just one facility. No other religious organization traffics in gold, silver, precious stones and the like in the same way and to the same amount as the Catholic Church. As I have mentioned before, the church is a global entity that – while mentioning the name of Jesus often – is totally built on man’s traditions.
When we read the New Testament Gospels, we find the sects of the Pharisees and the Sadducees; these appear to be religious people and sects. They mention Moses’ law often and use it as battering ram to keep the people subdued. They add man’s traditions to the clearly spoken Word of God; and, eventually, the traditions of men take pre-eminence over the Word of God.
We see this in Mark 7:8-13:
“For laying aside the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men —the washing of pitchers and cups, and many other such things you do.’ He said to them, ‘All too well you reject the commandment of God, that you may keep your tradition. For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who curses father or mother, let him be put to death.’ But you say, ‘If a man says to his father or mother, ‘Whatever profit you might have received from me is Corban— (that is, a gift to God),’ then you no longer let him do anything for his father or his mother, making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down. And many such things you do.”
Babylon was and is about religion and money, and they know that most people know there is a God, so they make use of Him. They separate themselves from the masses, they project themselves to be holier than all around them, and promote a hierarchy that offers levels of riches and achievements. These Pharisees had taken over the priesthood by the time Jesus walked the earth; and they ran, rather subjugated the people of Israel rather than served them as was the whole purpose of the priesthood. These religious leaders hated Jesus as He was a man of the people and He loved sinners.
Make no mistake; the religion of Babylon is rampant in the world; it has permeated every government, every school, all the media and all of the systems around us.
The whole world is preparing for the anti-Christ, some with full knowledge, and some just going with the flow. The Islamic world, for instance, is waiting for the 12th Imam, who is their savior; he is our Anti-Christ. I just saw this in a lecture by John MacArthur from some time ago. Islam is waiting for the Anti-Christ, and they are waiting for Jesus to return as well to be the ‘false prophet’ of the Anti-Christ and to tell the world that he is just a good man and not God.
As reported by the Washington Post in June 2014, the pope allowed Islamic prayers in the Vatican for the first time ever; then in February this year as reported in The Guardian, the pope and an imam signed a historic treaty of brotherhood. They want to promote peace, but this is just rhetoric; there is no peace in Islam, just conquering. They want peace in the Middle East, and we know according to Daniel 9:27,
“He will make a firm covenant with many for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and offering. And the abomination of desolation will be on a wing of the temple until the decreed destruction is poured out on the desolator.”
This Anti-Christ that the Christian world knows is an evil man and will eventually be the Devil incarnate, the Father of all lies, the savior that the Islamic world is longing for. It is with this religion and the religion of Catholicism that the kings and leaders of the world have committed their spiritual fornication. And in this last hour, the wrath and vengeance of God falls on her; and she is consumed.
The ten toes of Daniel’s statue in Daniel 2:41-43:
“And whereas thou sawest the feet and toes, part of potters’ clay, and part of iron, the kingdom shall be divided; but there shall be in it of the strength of the iron, forasmuch as thou sawest the iron mixed with miry clay. And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.”
Catholicism and Islam do not seem to mix, but the remnants of the Roman Empire and the Ottoman Empire will conspire together for a common cause to bring about the end; thus, we have the toes of clay and iron that are together. But theirs is not a strong union; it is one of convenience.
I want to touch on one last thing in this section – the phrase in verse 13, “the bodies and souls of men.” This is the currency of both the Kingdom of Light and the Kingdom of Darkness. In the Kingdom of Light, the Lord wants to redeem the bodies and the souls of men: we get new hearts; we get the Holy Spirit living in us; we get the new life in Jesus; we get new focuses and new purposes to live by; and one day soon, we will get new bodies from Jesus. But, the Kingdom of Darkness uses men; it takes advantage of their bodies and uses them up and discards them.
Just look at the decades of sexual abuse in the Catholic church that we seeing come to the surface. The priests from all over the world used the bodies of boys and girls for their sexual ‘pleasure,’ leaving their souls in jeopardy. Disillusioned children went to get life, but instead were given death to live with.
Today, Islam uses young men and women to commit heinous crimes, blowing themselves up and killing thousands over the years. Note that it is often the young men and women, not the leaders, who blow themselves up. They are just fodder for the religious leaders to abuse and use with the promise of some great gift in the Muslim paradise. I cannot imagine what happens on the other side when they awake in Hell.
These religions traffic in the bodies and the souls of men for the purpose of using them and discarding them. Satan, the god behind these two religions, is lying to the millions – well billions, really – and leading them on a path to Hell, called the ‘Broad Way’ in the Gospels.
The Whole World Mourns the Death of Babylon, Revelation 18:14-20
Again, we can use the recent burning of the Notre-Dame Cathedral as a precursor to what this event will be like. The whole world will mourn the burning of Babylon. The Notre-Dame Cathedral was a small microcosm of what this bigger event will be. The whole world will mourn; CNN will have its pundits on talking about how great Babylon was; we will have live footage and moment-by-moment commentary as the city burns. Now, I am not sure where that final city will be. It could be Rome; it could be the Vatican; it could be the EU Parliament in Brussels; it could in New York where the UN sits right now, though I think this the least likely as the Roman Empire never included the New World.
The people of the world will talk of how great the Whore of Babylon was, how she influenced the philosophies of the world, how she promoted this and that, how she championed this cause and that cause. But no one will tell the truth, that she, from her inception on the plains of Shinar in Genesis 11, preyed on the souls of men, her god and lord, Satan, using up people and discarding them as garbage for millennia as he advanced his kingdom in hopes one day of taking the place of God on the throne of Heaven. These people thought Satan loved them, but he lied to them; and in fact, he hated them. He can only love on person, himself. But his end is certain in the Lord.
Isaiah 14:12-14 “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.”
In contrast to the mourning world, the saints of God will rejoice. God will avenge those that have died at the hands of the Whore of Babylon – those killed by Catholicism and Islam over the centuries. Men and women, the servants of the Highest who were gruesomely killed simply because they loved Jesus and refused to be a part of or condone sin and evil. Peaceful men and women like Daniel whose only fault was that they loved Jesus.
“Vengeance is Mine says the Lord; I will repay” (Romans 12:19).
As the curtain falls on the end of the church age, we are rejoicing that the real Jesus will come to get us, and then He will return to kill the Anti-Christ and subjugate Satan. The world is waiting for the Anti-Christ; they will accept him with open arms and love him. They will surrender to him and give him almost unbridled power before they realize that he is not who they thought; and it will be too late.
May God have mercy on the people here on this side, and may we be diligent to get the truth out. There are some who can still call on Jesus to be saved. Tell somebody about Jesus and what He did for you and them.
Acts 1:7-8 “And he said unto them, it is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”