The book of Revelation, the last book in the Bible, takes us back to a “whole world” scenario (Genesis 11:1), and to Babylon (Revelation Ch.’s 17 & 18). We perhaps think of Babylon as the world system that will produce a world leader, the Antichrist. Some believe that when the Bible speaks about Jerusalem, it means the literal City of Jerusalem; therefore, they conclude, Babylon means the literal, rebuilt City of Babylon of the Last Days. We don’t know how far off the very end of the age is; perhaps circumstances will yet develop where Babylon will be rebuilt, whether in ancient Babylon, or a city in some other part of the world that will be named Babylon. The physical, rebuilt city of Babylon, according to this view, will become the revived centre of world power, commerce, and finance (Matthew 6:24). Perhaps both views are correct – the world system and a city. There certainly is the spirit of Babylon that pervades the whole earth, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the physical city of Babylon will not be rebuilt. There is a saying, “Events make a mockery of predictions.” Having said that, in Chapters 13-23 of Isaiah, there are prophecies about the surrounding nations. Chapters 13-14 speak of Babylonia; but there are no pronouncements concerning Assyria. Why omit the greatest empire of the day? The prophecies about Babylonia (Ch’s 13-14) are addressed to a mighty empire that Babylonia was to become a century later. Two homework questions are: Why did Isaiah relate to a powerful kingdom and its fall at the hands of Persia, eighty years after its rise? Why was it relevant to Isaiah’s day?
Isaiah’s pronouncement of Babylonia can be read as describing the death and defeat of Sargon (Isaiah 14:7-20). Reading about Sargon, it’s clear that Isaiah’s pronouncement of Babylonia referred to the only Assyrian king of Isaiah’s time, who worshipped the gods of Babylonia.
If the third Temple in Jerusalem is built, its occupant will most likely be the Antichrist. Lessons from the past prove it is possible. In Zephaniah 1:5 there were those that swore by the Lord and yet swore by Molech. King Ahaz of Judah recreated an Assyrian altar and erected it in the Temple. He did this to prove his loyalty to King Tiglath-Pileser III of Assyria. This spiritual penetration into Judah by Assyria led to the worship of the god Molech by sacrificing children on its fires (2 Kings 16:3). King Manasseh filled Jerusalem with Assyrian idols and symbols of the imperial culture. The idols and symbols reached out into the whole of Manasseh’s kingdom; and Assyrian became the official language! Assyrian rites were instituted in the Temple, and altars were built in honour of the host of heaven, meaning of course, the Assyrian sun god Ashur. An idol of the goddess Ishtar, queen of heaven was installed in the Temple. There were houses for the sacred prostitutes, all included in the House of God. There was much bloodshed under Manasseh’s reign (2 Kings 21:16). He did evil in the eyes of the Lord. Then there’s Antiochus Epiphanes and the desecration of the Temple (A stumbling-block to some Messianic and Jewish circles who declare that, Daniel 11:31 has been fulfilled, and there is no future fulfilment). The inhabitants of Jerusalem were deceived in the past; and could be deceived again in the future.
There are three operations in process in the story of Babel and Babylon. Suggested in the text is a rebellion against God, the unusual unity of the people, and God’s response. The spirit of antichrist that is already in the world (1 John 4:3), and is at work in the minds and hearts of humankind, deceiving and convincing the world to unite against God. This is becoming blatantly apparent every year that passes. “For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work, but the one who now restrains it will continue until he is taken out of the way. And then the lawless one will be revealed, whom the Lord Jesus will slay with the breath of His mouth and abolish by the majesty of His arrival. The coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with how Satan works. He will use all sorts of displays of power through signs and wonders that serve the lie, and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason, God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.” (2 Thessalonians 2:7-12). This is why the Antichrist will be so readily received. God has intervened in Britain saving the nation from various disasters. Is He saying now, similar to what He said to Israel in the Book of Judges: God said to the people of Israel, “Did I not save you from Egypt, the Amorite, the Ammonites, Philistines, Sidonites, Amalek, and Maon who oppressed you? You cried out to Me and I saved you from their clutches! But you have abandoned Me and serve other gods, therefore I will save you no more. Go and cry out to the gods whom you have chosen, let them save you in your hour of trouble” (Judges 10:11-14). How will Britain and the Western nations respond? Israel removed the foreign gods from their midst and served God, pleading with Him to save them (10:15-16). Have we gone past the point of no return?
Let us make bricks
Antichrist is a specific person, and is the final manifestation, the final product of the spirit of antichrist. Despite today’s great push for the ascent of woman, female domination and ‘empowerment’ that is flowing around the globe, the Antichrist will be a man! How galling to the #MeToo movement is the thought of the world dancing to ‘his’ tune? Feminism is simply another ‘ism’, another brick in the building of Babylon, the empire of man. With this spirit at work in the world it is possible that one day Babylon, the city of bricks and mortar will be rebuilt, in what is now Islamic territory.
The spirit of antichrist produces different manifestations of lawlessness. The Guardian newspaper reported that there are Masonic lodges in Parliament for MPs to attend, and one in London for journalists. Islam is another manifestation from this same spirit. Any spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God; it is the spirit of antichrist (1 John 4:30). We can understand that all false gods and false religions emanate from the same spirit; so too is Political Correctness, modern mass migration and the mixing of the nations, Global warming/Climate Change, LGBT, BLM, Wokeism, Evolution, Environmentalism – which is morphing into a pagan religion with “mother earth”, Secular Humanism, Communism, Globalism, world totalitarianism, and all the other “isms” of which there are many. They are all bricks in the hand of the enemy leading humankind away from the true God, whilst building a united totalitarian world against Him and the Lord Jesus Christ. To some, I might appear to be stating the obvious; but for an example, a recent study in the USA has shown that one in five Evangelicals reject the Bible’s teaching on sex and gender, accepting instead the idea of gender fluidity. What does Jesus speak into the Western church today? Perhaps – “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels” (Mark 8:38).
Another example of what has infiltrated the belief system of many Christians over the years is that of Global Warming, or what is now referred to as Climate Change. Climate change will not be controlled by man because it is not man-made. There has been exploding permafrost in Russia, weeks of historic fires in the American West, the hurricane season in the Atlantic with six major storms back-to-back, persistent drought and catastrophic flooding, and hurricane Sally – a Category 2 storm, landed near the Gulf shores, Alabama as I write, causing “historic and catastrophic” flooding to the Alabama-Florida coast; there are also increasingly scarce resources causing much concern. Man looks to himself, and ultimately to the man who will call himself god, not to the covenant God to meet these challenges. The Bible speaks of natural catastrophes increasing as the Day of the Lord draws near.
President Trump said that The Abrahamic Accords would allow Jews and Arabs “to live together, pray together and dream together.” Some commentators are suggesting that the Abrahamic Accord is paving the way for the appearance of Antichrist. The things we have already considered along with thought police and PC, are also preparing the way for the god of this world to appear in the likeness of man. But he will not come in humility; he will come in pride, blaspheming the Living God after deceiving the world into believing he is a man of peace and security. The straight paths are being polluted and made crooked, in opposition to Isaiah 40:3, Malachi 3:1, and Matthew 3:3. The God of Creation is being airbrushed out of the picture, and not for the first time in world history. It has all been done before. There is an interesting suggestion in the Talmud. It caught my attention because I believe it is what is happening in our world today. In Exodus 1:10 it says, “Come, let us deal with him, lo”. The suggestion is that the singular Hebrew word ‘lo’ refers to God, not to the Israelites. It is saying that the Egyptians plotted to deal cleverly with the would-be Saviour of Israel. Similarly, at Babel the powers of conformity “dealt cleverly” with God. They kept God at bay by denying His presence within humanity. The world denies God’s existence and ignores that He is Creator and Saviour.
Babylon the Bait – let’s make a name for ourselves
In our looking back we move forward from the book of Genesis to Exodus Ch.1. From there we see the people of Israel as slaves in Egypt. There, God’s people, Israel were to make bricks and build cities under the whips of their slave masters. They were made to gather their own straw to make bricks out of straw and mud (Exodus 5:7). Egypt was where they lost their individuality. Likewise, in Babylon future, the people are being enslaved to a world system, only this time it is voluntary and includes mind, body, and spirit – democracy in the west is being used for satanic ends (Revelation 13:8). Those of Babylon in Genesis were similarly enslaved. In reality, it was an enforced enslavement achieved by deception, coercion, and shepherding. It was done in a way that appeared to the people to be the direction and life that they had ‘chosen’, and was of their own volition, just as is happening in the world mind-set now. Covid, along with other events that occurred in 2020, is being used to speed-up the process of dissolving personal and national identity, and creating new social behaviour patterns and world-view. British Universities were corrupt as centres of independent learning long before Covid, being dependent upon wealthy foreign students to fill their coffers. Vice Chancellors are paid more than the Prime Minister, but not the staff whose wages and working conditions remain relatively poor. University leaders en masse were anti-Brexit supporters and campaigners. Some political commentators describe the British universities system as market Stalinism. It will all end in disaster (Revelation 18:9-19) The end of this age is drawing near. We must wake up! The kingdoms of this world will pass away (1 John 2:17; Luke 21:33). Our emphasis must be on the Kingdom of God. “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole inhabited earth as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). It is the “whole earth” again. Man was commanded to multiply and fill the earth; the Flood covered the whole earth; the whole earth had one language and vocabulary; they were scattered over the face of the entire world; Habakkuk 2:14 says, “For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord…”
Building a People of [the] Tower
The events in Babel follow after The Flood. In Genesis 9:1 God says: “Be fruitful, and increase, and fill, the earth.” At first, humanity appears to obey the Lord’s command as they spread out across the earth (Genesis 10:32). But things changed when, instead of continuing to disperse across the land in order to fill the earth, the people choose instead to live in one place, one area. They had wandered from the Flood until they came across a valley-plain, where they settled. There they had one language and developed one set of ideas. They had followed on from a catastrophic trauma which no doubt affected their psyche (Especially when one considers the psychological affect the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the world!). Instead of taking every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:5) and obeying God’s Word, the people developed an alternative life-style, putting on the old mind-set – They could become like God, or, as gods, by disobeying God (Genesis 3:5).
To make a name for themselves the individuals involved had to lose their identities, and as the individuals drift further from themselves, they move farther from God in who’s image they are made. Because their “I” has diminished and been suppressed, they are unable to call on a “Thou”. In the narrative on Babel the people are nameless, and God remains nameless too. Having sought to make a name for themselves, under God’s sentence the only name they acquired was one of confusion and permanent obscurity. Without God we are nothing. Names are restored only after the old line has passed away, and the new, named line begins (Genesis 11:10).
We have seen the wickedness of King Manasseh and the terrible things he did; however, the book of Chronicles presents us with a picture of Manasseh’s final days. Being suspected of treason, Manasseh was taken captive and led away in chains to Babylonia. That is where and when he returned to the Lord (2 Chronicles 33:12-13, 15-16). As the world is busy throwing off God, “Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us (Hebrews 12:1). Unless God intervenes, we are heading into a world situation where everything of God is called evil, and evil is called good. This has already begun.
Today, Babylon is an archaeological site of ruins; but the people it once took into exile have risen again. They have and are returning to the land of their ancestors, fulfilling the words of the prophet. Babylon’s gods and statues are on show in museums as a testimony to ancient foolishness. But the name is revived in health services for example. “Babylon Health” is a health service provider that provides remote consultations with doctors and health care professionals via text and video messaging through its mobile application. The subscription for private healthcare services opened in the UK in 2013 and has since been expanded internationally to Rwanda and Canada. In the UK, Babylon's NHS service covers more than 40,000 registered user-patients, which has caused controversial disputes over NHS funding models.[i] Dr Mobasher Butt is Chief Medical Officer at Babylon, a global digital healthcare service using Artificial Intelligence to democratise healthcare. Many questions are being asked concerning the direction healthcare is taking. Some “great thinkers” want to depopulate the world. This opposes God’s command, as much of today’s thinking does.
God is not going to allow human-kind to destroy His creation. The God who created the heavens and the earth is the God who will destroy creation (2 Peter 3:12); Babylon will be busted for all of eternity. He will make a new heaven and earth (Isaiah 65:17; Revelation 21:1). He is the God “That says to Jerusalem, you shall be inhabited, and to the cities of Judah, you shall be rebuilt, and its ruins I will resurrect” (Isaiah 44:26). He keeps His promises, His Word is truth (John 17:17).
“But according to His promise we are looking for new heavens and a new earth, in which righteousness dwells” (2 Peter 3:13)
Blessings and shalom