Revelation Chapter 18

Revelation Chapter 18

 

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

18:2 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.

18:3 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.

18:4 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.

18:5 For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.

18:6 Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double.

18:7 How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow.

18:8 Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong [is] the Lord God who judgeth her.

18:9 And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning,

18:10 Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come.

18:11 And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more:

18:12 The merchandise of gold, and silver, and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet, and all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood, and of brass, and iron, and marble,

 

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18:13 And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men.

18:14 And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee, and all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee, and thou shalt find them no more at all.

18:15 The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her, shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment, weeping and wailing,

18:16 And saying, Alas, alas, that great city, that was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet, and decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls!

18:17 For in one hour so great riches is come to nought. And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships, and sailors, and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off,

18:18 And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, What [city is] like unto this great city!

18:19 And they cast dust on their heads, and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas, that great city, wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! for in one hour is she made desolate.

18:20 Rejoice over her, [thou] heaven, and [ye] holy apostles and prophets; for God hath avenged you on her.

18:21 And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast [it] into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all.

18:22 And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft [he be], shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee;

18:23 And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.

18:24 And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.

 

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A picture of the great whore, which is the Devil’s masterpiece, was pictured in chapter 17. Now, in contrast to the most the Devil can do on earth, is pictured the glorious picture of the crescendo of the everlasting gospel as a mighty angel that lightens the whole earth with its glory.

"The angel who unites in the proclamation of the third angel’s message is to lighten the whole earth with his glory. A work of world-wide extent and unwonted power is here foretold. The advent movement of 1840-44 was a glorious manifestation of the power of God; the first angel’s message was carried to every missionary station in the world, and in some countries there was the greatest religious interest which has been witnessed in any land since the Reformation of the sixteenth century; but these are to be exceeded by the mighty movement under the last warning of the third angel." {GC 611.1}

"The work will be similar to that of the Day of Pentecost. As the ‘former rain’ was given, in the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at the opening of the gospel, to cause the upspringing of the precious seed, so the ‘latter rain’ will be given at its close for the ripening of the harvest. ‘Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord: His going forth is prepared as the morning; and He shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.’ Hosea 6:3. ‘Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God: for He hath given you the former rain moderately, and He will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain.’ Joel 2:23. ‘In the last days, saith God, I will pour out of My Spirit upon all flesh.’ ‘And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ Acts 2:17, 21." {GC 611.2}

"The great work of the gospel is not to close with less manifestation of the power of God than marked its opening. The prophecies which were fulfilled in the outpouring of the former rain at the opening of the gospel are again to be fulfilled in the latter rain at its close. Here are ‘the times of refreshing’ to which the apostle Peter looked forward when he said: ‘Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; and He shall send Jesus.’ Acts 3:19, 20." {GC 611.3}

"Servants of God, with their faces lighted up and shining with holy consecration, will hasten from place to place to proclaim the message

 

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from heaven. By thousands of voices, all over the earth, the warning will be given. Miracles will be wrought, the sick will be healed, and signs and wonders will follow the believers. Satan also works, with lying wonders, even bringing down fire from heaven in the sight of men. Revelation 13:13. Thus the inhabitants of the earth will be brought to take their stand." {GC 612.1}

"The message will be carried not so much by argument as by the deep conviction of the Spirit of God. The arguments have been presented. The seed has been sown, and now it will spring up and bear fruit. The publications distributed by missionary workers have exerted their influence, yet many whose minds were impressed have been prevented from fully comprehending the truth or from yielding obedience. Now the rays of light penetrate everywhere, the truth is seen in its clearness, and the honest children of God sever the bands which have held them. Family connections, church relations, are powerless to stay them now. Truth is more precious than all besides. Notwithstanding the agencies combined against the truth, a large number take their stand upon the Lord’s side." {GC 612.2}

"Revelation 18 points to the time when, as the result of rejecting the threefold warning of Revelation 14:6-12, the church will have fully reached the condition foretold by the second angel, and the people of God still in Babylon will be called upon to separate from her communion. This message is the last that will ever be given to the world; and it will accomplish its work. When those that ‘believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness’ (2 Thessalonians 2:12), shall be left to receive strong delusion and to believe a lie, then the light of truth will shine upon all whose hearts are open to receive it, and all the children of the Lord that remain in Babylon will heed the call: ‘Come out of her, My people’ (Revelation 18:4)." {GC 390.2}

Verse 2 tells us that it is God’s unrequited love—love that will not let go—that cries out "Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen!" The fallen state of the Papacy and her daughters is exposed in God’s plan to reclaim His children who remain in her system. It is the Devil, his evil spirits, spirit organizations, and secret associations—the unclean and hateful birds caged in the Papacy—which characterize it in God’s sight.

Verse 3 shows the activity which makes Babylon fallen—the

 

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wine of the wrath of her fornication.

"The great sin charged against Babylon is that she ‘made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.’ This cup of intoxication which she presents to the world represents the false doctrines that she has accepted as the result of her unlawful connection with the great ones of the earth. Friendship with the world corrupts her faith, and in her turn she exerts a corrupting influence upon the world by teaching doctrines which are opposed to the plainest statements of Holy Writ." {GC 388.2}.

Verse 4 rehearses that now, before the close of the judgment and before the close of probation, God is calling His people (for God is the God of the whole earth, including Babylon) to come out of Babylon, the fallen churches headed by the Papacy. God calls His people to come out of the one-world church in order not to partake of her sins, and not to receive her plagues.

In verse 5 we see that the close of probation for the Papacy (and the whole world the Papacy is controlling) is about reached because her sins have reached unto heaven, and God is remembering her iniquities.

Verses 6–7 indicate that God deals exactly with sins. "Double" means "the exact same" i.e. "according to her works." A person’s "double" is someone else that looks just like that person. The reward fits or matches the deed. Double, in this verse does not mean "twice as much." As much as the Papacy has lived deliciously, glorifying herself—that much torment and sorrow give her! The judgment meted out is equivalent to the wrong done.

In verse 8, "one day" of the coming of plagues, death, mourning, and famine means that the change is going to be sudden—in one literal day as noted in the comments under Revelation 16:12—the 6th plague. Revelation 17:16 tell us that the ten kings that reigned with the Pope for one hour turn on her in hatred and burn her with fire and eat her flesh! It was Goliath’s own sword that David used to take off his head (1 Samuel 17:51). When Gideon and his 300 men blew the trumpets, the Midianites killed each other. (Judges 7:22) In Jehoshaphat’s time the same thing happened with the children of Ammon, Moab, and the inhabitants of Mount Seir. (2

 

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Chronicles 20:23). Thus also in the end of time, the kings of the earth, who have been used by the Papacy, turn on it and destroy it.

Verses 9–24 give much detail that will be recognizable in the outworking of the destruction of the Papacy at the end of time. It is of interest that three groups of people are described who grieve at the destruction of the Papacy symbolized as Babylon. Two verses (9–10) describe the reaction of the kings of the earth. Six verses (11–16) describe the reaction of the merchants of the earth. Three verses (17–19) describe the reaction of the shipmasters and sailors. This suggests that commerce has the greatest stake in the one world religion! It also reveals three areas of focus of Babylon—politics, commerce, and transportation. Verses 22–23 mention what will not be any more in Babylon—music, light and marriage and connects these with commerce and drugs (sorceries) or witchcraft. Finally one thing that is found in Babylon is mentioned in verse 24—the blood of prophets, saints, and of all who have been slain on earth!