We ended our last look into Revelation 18 on verse five. So what does verse five say?
For her iniquities (her crimes and transgressions) are piled up as high as heaven, and God has remembered her wickedness and [her] crimes [and calls them up for settlement].
[Jeremiah. 51:9.] (Revelation 18:5 AMP)
If you are unfamiliar with the Amplified Bible’s logic, things in brackets [ ] are meant to give you deeper insights into the verse at hand. Not that the brackets are inappropriate but occasionally, I struggle to understand the point they are trying to make. The other thing that affects my understanding is that Revelation 18:5 is NOT a standalone verse, as the context is lacking. The context begins in verse two and immediately begins referring to Babylon. As I said in my previous post, Babylon is little more than a ghost town, much like an old, forgotten mining community that you find in our American deserts. I realize that what I am telling you is in opposition to Dr. Andy Woods, but Babylon, the physical city, will never rise again. If what I am saying is valid, then Babylon represents something else.
Ah, the next question is, what is that something else?
In the previous post covering Revelation 18:1-5, I gave examples of how Babylon references Israel. I am not going to cover all those references here but merely say that the references to Babylon are indicative of Israel.
In the passage above, there is a clarifying statement [and calls them up for settlement] that is apparently found in the words of the Prophet Jeremiah. So let’s pursue Jeremiah for a moment.
We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed. Forsake her and let us each go to his own country, for her guilt and the judgment against her reach to heaven and are lifted even to the skies. [Gen. 18:20, 21.] (Jeremiah 51:9 AMP)
“We would have healed Babylon,”
If it’s not Babylon, to whom is the speaker referring?
I could say that the speaker is Jeremiah; if that is the case, then I have to assume that Jeremiah and company are the ones that attempted to heal Babylon.
Why would they do that, as Babylon was perceived as the enemy?
Any healing would have to be through a conversion to being Jews, and we know that wouldn’t happen. The other possibility would be that Jeremiah and company would infuse thousands of dollars into Babylon so that they could see how horrible their techniques and prisons are. I am being facetious because you know that neither of those things happened. So the healing assumption doesn’t work unless I apply this reasoning to Israel, and then I can see Jeremiah’s heart as he hopes the words he speaks can bring about healing to Israel.
I opened my MacArthur Study Bible to read the introduction to the prophecies of Jeremiah, and here is what I found.
He was known as the weeping prophet because of his conflict over predictions of judgment against Israel by the invading Babylonians. For these prophecies, he was threatened, tried for his life, put in stocks, forced to flee from Jehoiakim, publicly humiliated by a false prophet, and thrown into a septic waste pit. Once the invasion of Judah was inevitable, he pled with Jewish leaders not to resist the Babylonian conqueror to prevent Jerusalem’s destruction.
And, he called on delegates of other nations to heed his counsel and submit to Babylon. When Babylon invaded Egypt in 568, 567 B.C., Jeremiah was taken captive to Babylon. Jeremiah was from Judah, the Southern kingdom, and the last to go into captivity. My MacArthur commentary tells me that Judah was engrossed in blatant idolatry. I bring this bit of history into the equation as it is difficult, at best, to heal an invading nation.
I began to look through my commentaries to see what they had to say, especially since my first assumption is that “We represents the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” One comment, in particular, caught my eye when it said, remove the word would.
My immediate reaction was why, and based upon what?
I began looking into the Strong’s concordance a short time later, and I found this.
The word translated as “We would have healed” by most is the Hebrew word râphâ’ or râphâh; they both mean the same thing. It is a primitive root; properly to mend, to cure, cause to heal, make whole.
So Jeremiah 51:9 could be read like this.
“We tried to heal Babylon, but she cannot be healed. So let us leave her and let each of us go to our own country. God in heaven will decide Babylon’s punishment. He will decide what will happen to Babylon. (Jeremiah 51:9 ERV)
If I contrast Babylon with Israel, this statement, “she cannot be healed,” is immensely harsh. If you are a Bible student, then you know that the entirety of the Revelation shows us God’s punishment upon Israel for their sins and their rejection of God; and it is also a punishment against the nations for similar reasons.
So what do we see next?
Revelation 18:6 CEV Treat her as she has treated others. Make her pay double for what she has done. Make her drink twice as much of what she mixed for others.
If this is Israel, then watch this.
Jeremiah 16:14-18 NASB “Therefore behold, days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when it will no longer be said, ‘As the LORD lives, who brought up the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt,’ (15) but, ‘As the LORD lives, who brought up the sons of Israel from the land of the north and from all the countries where He had banished them.’ For I will restore them to their own land which I gave to their fathers. (16) “Behold, I am going to send for many fishermen,” declares the LORD, “and they will fish for them; and afterwards I will send for many hunters, and they will hunt them from every mountain and every hill and from the clefts of the rocks. (17) “For My eyes are on all their ways; they are not hidden from My face, nor is their iniquity concealed from My eyes. (18) “I will first doubly repay their iniquity and their sin because they have polluted My land; they have filled My inheritance with the carcasses of their detestable idols and with their abominations.”
The people in the land of Israel have been brought back from the land of the North and from all the countries where He had banished them. And, He has restored them to their land.
If Revelation 18:6 is speaking about Babylon, don’t you find it peculiar that Jeremiah 16:18 uses comparable language specifically against Israel?
Revelation 18:7 NASB “To the degree that she glorified herself and lived sensuously, to the same degree give her torment and mourning; for she says in her heart, ‘I SIT as A QUEEN AND I AM NOT A WIDOW, and will never see mourning.’
But we are not to make accusations with two or three witnesses. So how about this.
“Yet you said, ‘I will be a queen forever.’ These things you did not consider Nor remember the outcome of them. “Now, then, hear this, you sensual one, Who dwells securely, Who says in your heart, ‘I am, and there is no one besides me. I will not sit as a widow, Nor know loss of children.‘ (Isaiah 47:7-8 NASB)
Does the context of Isaiah 47 cover Israel?
Absolutely, and yet the impulsive translation writers titled this chapter “the humiliation of Babylon;” and yet, look at this verse.
“Come down and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon; Sit on the ground without a throne, O daughter of the Chaldeans! For you shall no longer be called tender and delicate. (Isaiah 47:1 NASB)
It appears that God is talking to the virgin daughter of Babylon. Now, I have to figure out who might fill this role.
Babylon had no virgin daughter, although some might argue that the conquering nations, such as the Medo-Persian empire, could have filled that function, or perhaps the Chaldeans were entitled to carry that name. If that is your belief or understanding, then prove it by your Biblical witnesses. There aren’t any. So the characterization of the virgin daughter of Babylon falls upon Israel. (Consider that I use that term lightly as they were NOT the unified nation of Israel when they went into captivity – the kingdom was split into the Northern kingdom of Israel and the Southern kingdom of Judah. Judah is where we found King David, and then even that was not without struggle.)
Consider what Jeremiah 14 tells us.
“The people also to whom they are prophesying will be thrown out into the streets of Jerusalem because of the famine and the sword; and there will be no one to bury them–neither them, nor their wives, nor their sons, nor their daughters–for I will pour out their own wickedness on them. “You will say this word to them, ‘Let my eyes flow down with tears night and day, And let them not cease; For the virgin daughter of my people has been crushed with a mighty blow, With a sorely infected wound.” (Jeremiah 14:16-17 NASB)
Consider how the captives of Babylon – those of the faith camp, had false prophets telling them, God will deliver us quickly from this vile place. In opposition to those claims was Jeremiah the prophet, who told the captives, which included himself, to build houses, plant gardens and eat the fruit, and take wives for your sons and daughters because we will be here for a long time. (Read Jeremiah 29 in your spare time.)
Is it possible that this seventy-year span is where Israel became the daughter of Babylon?
Perhaps, but there was to be an end to the captivity. The daughter would then be freed to marry herself to whoever; this seems like a redundant statement considering how Israel had married themselves to many nations and their gods. So why should their time in Babylon be any different?
‘Then it will be when seventy years are completed I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation,’ declares the LORD, ‘for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans; and I will make it an everlasting desolation. (Jeremiah 25:12 NASB)
Consider that Daniel chapter 9 tells us that Daniel ascertained by books that the seventy years had been completed.
In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of Median descent, who was made king over the kingdom of the Chaldeans–in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, observed in the books the number of the years which was revealed as the word of the LORD to Jeremiah the prophet for the completion of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years. (Daniel 9:1-2 NASB)
That means that Israel’s freedom from Babylon’s captivity; and the eventual, everlasting desolation of Babylon was only a short time away.
And Babylon, the beauty of kingdoms, the glory of the Chaldeans’ pride, Will be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. It will never be inhabited or lived in from generation to generation; Nor will the Arab pitch his tent there, Nor will shepherds make their flocks lie down there. But desert creatures will lie down there, And their houses will be full of owls; Ostriches also will live there, and shaggy goats will frolic there. Hyenas will howl in their fortified towers And jackals in their luxurious palaces. Her fateful time also will soon come, and her days will not be prolonged. (Isaiah 13:19-22 NASB)
In 2022, many of us are focused on Damascus, as this city has a drastic prophecy declared against it; yet there it stands, receiving air shipments of weapons for usage against Israel. Hmm.
Revelation 18:8 NASB “For this reason in one day her plagues will come, pestilence and mourning and famine, and she will be burned up with fire; for the Lord God who judges her is strong.
As I read through the Revelation and Daniel’s prophecies, it seems that so much of the damage that Israel is to sustain can quickly come in an hour, but do we talk about it? No, for it is too uncomfortable and challenges previous false teachings. One of the dramatic moments in time that gets spoken of frequently is Revelation 18:9-20. This monumental passage speaks of Babylon being destroyed in an hour.
Verse eight above tells us that Babylon is destroyed in a day, and yet here, in verses 9-20, it is destroyed in an hour. I am not sure the amount of time matters, as devastating loss is still a loss.
“And the kings of the earth, who committed acts of immorality and lived sensuously with her, will weep and lament over her when they see the smoke of her burning, standing at a distance because of the fear of her torment, saying, ‘woe, woe, the great city, Babylon, the strong city! For in one hour, your judgment has come.’ “And the merchants of the earth weep and mourn over her, because no one buys their cargoes any more–cargoes of gold and silver and precious stones and pearls and fine linen and purple and silk and scarlet, and every kind of citron wood and every article of ivory and every article made from very costly wood and bronze and iron and marble, and cinnamon and spice and incense and perfume and frankincense and wine and olive oil and fine flour and wheat and cattle and sheep, and cargoes of horses and chariots and slaves and human lives. “The fruit you long for has gone from you, and all things that were luxurious and splendid have passed away from you, and men will no longer find them. “The merchants of these things, who became rich from her, will stand at a distance because of the fear of her torment, weeping and mourning, saying, ‘Woe, woe, the great city, she who was clothed in fine linen and purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls; for in one hour such great wealth has been laid waste!’ And every ship-master and every passenger and sailor, and as many as make their living by the sea, stood at a distance, and were crying out as they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, ‘What city is like the great city?’ “And they threw dust on their heads and were crying out, weeping and mourning, saying, ‘Woe, woe, the great city, in which all who had ships at sea became rich by her wealth, for in one hour she has been laid waste!’ “Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you saints and apostles and prophets, because God has pronounced judgment for you against her.” (Revelation 18:9-20 NASB)
I have introduced several things for you to think about, so what did Revelation 18:7 say?
“To the degree that she [Israel] glorified herself and lived sensuously, to the same degree give her torment and mourning; for she says in her heart, ‘I SIT as A QUEEN AND I AM NOT A WIDOW, and will never see mourning.”
Since we have a comprehension that Revelation 18 is also referring to Israel as well as a “spiritual” Babylon, you may not be aware that many Jews, to this very day, will say we have NEVER been in captivity or slaves to anyone.
Are you serious? What about Egypt, and what about Babylon? Perhaps Israel should have tried repentance and mourning. Now, here comes perspective. Though an analogy of Israel, Babylon is speaking about an empire, perceived as a beast and shown to be a harlot that motivates the current financial greed, idol worship, and blatant adultery against God.
What does verse 8 tell us?
Not only will the “governmental and economic” system collapse in a day, but so will Israel. Ezekiel tells us that only a third will survive what is coming. Ezekiel 5:12 is the passage that tells me that only one-third of Israel survives, and quite possibly makes it into the millennial kingdom.
‘One-third of you will die by plague or be consumed by famine among you, one third will fall by the sword around you, and one third I will scatter to every wind, and I will unsheathe a sword behind them. (Ezekiel 5:12 NASB)
Merely because the verse says that one-third will die by plague does not mean this will happen in a day. In contrast to what we think it means, an interesting aspect of the word plague is that it is the Hebrew word deber and means pestilence – in the sense of destroying. In a sense, our first introduction to plagues was those placed upon Egypt to force Pharaoh to let God’s people go.
Webster’s dictionary describes plagues as acute, malignant, and contagious diseases. The black plague was associated with filth and rats in the dark ages. The plagues upon Egypt included boils, gnats, and frogs, among other things.
Since our word deber originated from another word, dâbar, perhaps we need to include this definition to clarify our understanding. The Hebrew word dâbar is assumed to properly mean arrange, but this does not make sense in the context of plague or pestilence. One of the other meanings is to subdue. If you use the word subdue in conjunction with contagious diseases, you should be able to make the connection between the C19 injections and this unprecedented population reduction program, that eventually, for Israel, kills off one-third of its population.