The Kings of the earth make this lament. The Merchants make it (Rev. 18:16+) : and the Mariners make it (Rev. 18:19+). In the first, the verbs introducing it are in the Future tense (Rev. 18:9+): in the second, in the Present (Rev. 18:11+), and in the third, the Past tense (Rev. 18:17+). It is as though a moving scene is passing before the eyes, while the interpreting angel explains it.1The destruction of Babylon described in this chapter bears much in common with the predicted destruction of Tyre in Ezekiel’s day (Eze. 26-28). Both cities are called harlots and known for their commercial splendor, shipping, and ungodly influence upon the surrounding nations. At their destruction, merchants who benefited from commercial contact with the city are grieved. The destruction of Tyre which Ezekiel predicted was initiated by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon (the city destroyed in this chapter) and completed by Alexander the Great in 332 B.C.2 An important commonality between the two cites is the empowerment of their respective kings by Satan (Isa. 14:4, 12; Eze. 28:2, 13-14; Rev. 13:2+).It is important to grasp the essential unity between Revelation 17+ and 18+. Many interpreters are quick to identify the Harlot as a separate entity from the city while overlooking the many indications that a single Babylon is in view:
The last verse of chapter 17 closed it by giving the interpretation of the woman as being “that great city.” Though the woman is the first thing mentioned in that chapter, yet her interpretation is left till the end, so that the mention of the city may lead on to the account of its destruction, which is the subject of chapter 18.3
Chapter 18 contains the description of the previously announced “judgment” of the prostitute (Rev. 17:1+). It is important not to separate this chapter from the portrayal of the prostitute in chapter 17+, for there is no warrant for making the prostitute in chapter 17+ different from the city in chapter 18+ (cf. Rev. 17:18+).4See One or Two Babylons?After these things
Therefore the wild desert beasts shall dwell there with the jackals, and the ostriches shall dwell in it. It shall be inhabited no more forever, nor shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation. (Jer. 50:39 cf. Jer. 51:37) [emphasis added]Wild desert beasts (Jer. 50:39) is צִיִּים [ṣîyîm] : “A wild desert creature . . . specific identification is not known . . . some of these contexts may be a desert demon . . . a supernatural class of being that haunts the desert (Ps. 74:14).”11
But wild beasts of the desert will lie there, and their houses will be full of owls; ostriches will dwell there, and wild goats will caper there. The hyenas will howl in their citadels, and jackals in their pleasant palaces. Her time is near to come, and her days will not be prolonged. (Isa. 13:21-22 cf. Isa. 14:23) [emphasis added]Wild goats (Isa. 13:21) is שְׂעִירִים [śeʿîrîm] : “Satyr, may refer to a demon possessed goat like the swine of Gadara (Mat. 8:30-32).”12 “Satyr, i.e., a spirit being that inhabits desolate areas (Isa. 13:21; 34:14).”13
The Hebrew word sāʿîr primarily meant a he-goat. In lower Egypt the goat was worshipped with abominable rites. The word is rendered “satyr” in two passages, Isaiah 13:21 and 34:14 (R.V. margin “hegoat”). In both places the Septuagint translates it daimonia, demons, and this gives the true indication of the evil spirits which inspired the particular worship carried on by the idolaters: “the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons and not to God” (1Cor. 10:20). The word is translated “devils” (that is, demons) in KJV Leviticus 17:7 “they shall no more offer their sacrifices unto devils, after whom they have gone a whoring” . . . that is, to the evil spirits.14It appears that both Babylon and Edom (Isa. 34:8-17) will be dwelling places for demons during the Millennial Kingdom:15
It is obvious that the animal inhabitants, as we know them, mentioned in Isa. 13:20-22 and Jer. 50:39-40, cannot live in a place of continual burning pitch and brimstone and so there cannot be literal animals. . . . This place of continual burning and smoke will be a place of confinement for many demons during the Kingdom period. . . . In fact, the Hebrew word translated wild goats refers to demons in goat form.16Hated is μεμισημένου [memisēmenou] , a perfect tense passive participle, while having been hated. These demon spirits were hated in the past, but will now be confined to the region of Babylon. Thus, in the same way that Satan is bound so he is unable to interfere with the Millennial Kingdom, his fallen angels will also be incarcerated during the thousand-year reign of Messiah on earth.Some Greek manuscripts include, and every unclean beast.17
Such international magnates and financiers constitute, more often than not, the power behind the throne. Kings and presidents often attain and keep their authority by sufferance of those who finance their undertakings. In turn, these great men of the earth receive land grants and trade monopolies and tax loopholes and innumerable other favors from those whom they establish in political power, all to enrich themselves still further.20
It has become an axiom that “corporations have no souls,” and upon this all great moneyed corporations act, though the men who constitute them will find out a different doctrine when they come to the day of judgment. And when it comes to these great and ever magnifying commercial compacts and interests, there is not a law of God or man which is not compelled to yield if found in the way. . . . If the question were ever pressed in these circles, What is truth? it would be hooted and laughed to scorn. The cry would be, “What have we to do with that? Let every one quietly enjoy his own opinions.” . . . Church is nothing, State is nothing, creed is nothing, Bible is nothing, Sunday is nothing, religious scruples are nothing, conscience is nothing, everything is practically nothing, except as it can be turned or used to the one great end of accumulation and wealth.21have become rich
In their wailing for you they will take up a lamentation, and lament for you: ‘What city is like Tyre, destroyed in the midst of the sea?’ When your wares went out by sea, you satisfied many people; you enriched the kings of the earth with your many luxury goods and your merchandise. But you are broken by the seas in the depths of the waters; your merchandise and the entire company will fall in your midst. (Eze. 27:32-34)the abundance of her luxury
Go forth from Babylon! Flee from the Chaldeans! With a voice of singing, declare, proclaim this, utter it to the end of the earth; say, “The LORD has redeemed His servant Jacob!” (Isa. 48:20)
Move from the midst of Babylon, go out of the land of the Chaldeans; and be like the rams before the flocks. (Jer. 50:8)
Flee from the midst of Babylon, and every one save his life! Do not be cut off in her iniquity, for this is the time of the LORD’S vengeance; He shall recompense her. (Jer. 51:6)
We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed. Forsake her, and let us go everyone to his own country; for her judgment reaches to heaven and is lifted up to the skies. (Jer. 51:9)
My people, go out of the midst of her! And let everyone deliver himself from the fierce anger of the LORD. (Jer. 51:45)
You who have escaped the sword, get away! Do not stand still! Remember the LORD afar off, and let Jerusalem come to your mind. (Jer. 51:50)
“Up, up! Flee from the land of the north,” says the Lord; “for I have spread you abroad like the four winds of heaven,” says the Lord. “Up, Zion! Escape, you who dwell with the daughter of Babylon.” (Zec. 2:6-7)23If the call to God’s people to come out of Babylon immediately precedes the time of destruction under the seventh bowl (Rev. 16:19+), then the requirement to take the mark of the Beast for commercial participation has already been imposed (cf. Rev. 16:2+). Since it is impossible to take the mark and be among the elect of God (Rev. 14:9-11+; 17:8+), those saints which are in Babylon at this time are “underground.” They will be unable to obtain support except by the black market and must remain in hiding because they lack the mark (Rev. 13:15+).24 If the warning occurs before the pouring forth of the first bowl (Rev. 16:2+), then the mark of the Beast may not have been instituted yet and the saints in the city have probably been drawn there to participate in the city’s commercial prosperity. Like Lot at the gates of Sodom, they unwisely linger and dabble in their ungodly surroundings.This should not be interpreted as a general command for believers to physically separate from all who practice sin:
I wrote to you in my epistle not to keep company with sexually immoral people. Yet I certainly did not mean with the sexually immoral people of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner—not even to eat with such a person. (1Cor. 5:9-11)This verse is readily abused in the hands of legalistic shepherds who use it as a tool to manipulate their flock in an attempt to control every aspect of their lives. This illustrates one of the dangers of taking passages out of context and spiritualizing their meaning. This verse concerns the Tribulation period and the physical destruction of the literal city of Babylon. It does not concern a legalistic separation of the believer today from all forms of commercial involvement.
While these words have a real application to the believer to come forth to Jesus outside the spiritual Babylon—ecclesiasticism, Nicolaitanism and the false promises of “mystery” Babylon in its various forms; yet the particular interpretation of the words is not to the saints, who will have been raptured before this call goes forth. The call to “come forth” from this great commercial Sodom of the last days—rebuilt Babylon, is evidently issued to those individuals living in or doing business in that capital of the Antichrist in the last days.25lest you share in her sins
Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” (2Cor. 6:14-16)The saints who are in Babylon at the time of the end are at great risk of taking part in or having sympathetic interest in her sins.27 lest you receive of her plagues
According to Rev. 17:16-17+, it is the false Christ and his allies who will destroy Babylon in compliance with the overarching purpose of God. Further confirmation of this conclusion surfaces in noting that the result of the judgment is the same in both chapters: the burning of the city (Rev. 17:16+; 18:8+, 9+, 18+). . . . God puts into the hearts of these enemies to do what they do, so it appears wisest to connect the city’s burning in chapter 18+ with that in chapter 17+.28The NU text and several MT manuscripts omit to you. The unnamed recipients of what she rendered is probably the whole earth. This is supported by the realization that she has rendered to her enemies throughout history (Rev. 18:24+). See commentary on Revelation 17:16.She rendered, is αὐτὴ ἀπέδωκεν [autē apedōken] , she, she gave out. The addition of the pronoun in addition to the implicit pronoun found in the verb form emphasizes her bad behavior. Her judgment is based on the law of retribution, not undertaken by the saints, but by God. “O daughter of Babylon, who are to be destroyed, happy the one who repays you as you have served us!” (Ps. 137:8). “Take vengeance on her. As she has done, so do to her” (Jer. 50:15b). “Repay her according to her work; according to all she has done, do to her” (Jer. 50:29b). “As Babylon has caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon the slain of all the earth shall fall” (Jer. 51:49).repay her double according to her works
This word, which is formed by the prophet in a manner analogous to Mizraim, and perhaps also Aram Naharaim, means “double rebellion,” or “double obstinacy.” It comes from the root מָרָה [mārâ] , “to be rebellious” against Jahveh and His commandments.29in the cup which she has mixed, mix double for her
Throughout history the petty kingdoms and empires built by proud, arrogant, God-rejecting rebels have come and gone. The spirit of humanism first expressed at Babel has permeated human history ever since. Unshakably optimistic despite centuries of war, slaughter, injustice, and cruelty, people still seek a utopia, to be brought about by humanity’s upward scientific progress. Having taken control (so they think) of their own destiny through science, sinners have no use for God and haughtily replace Him as self-styled gods devoted to their own sovereignty.33I sit as queen
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 more be called tender and delicate. Take the millstones and grind meal. Remove your veil, take off the skirt, uncover the thigh, pass through the rivers. Your nakedness shall be uncovered, yes, your shame will be seen; I will take vengeance, and I will not arbitrate with a man. As for our Redeemer, the LORD of hosts is His name, The Holy One of Israel. Sit in silence, and go into darkness, O daughter of the Chaldeans; for you shall no longer be called The Lady of Kingdoms. (Isa. 47:1-5)am no widow and will not see sorrow
Therefore hear this now, you who are given to pleasures, who dwell securely, who say in your heart, ‘I am, and there is no one else beside me; I shall not sit as a widow, nor shall I know the loss of children’; but these two things shall come to you in a moment, in one day: the loss of children, and widowhood. (Isa. 47:8-9a)The loss of her children may refer to the judgment of her daughter harlots (Rev. 17:5+) when the cities of the nations fall as part of the seventh bowl judgment under which she herself is destroyed (Rev. 16:19+).
The suddenness and completeness of Babylon’s judgment and disappearance from the face of the earth is the one prominent feature of this prophecy: and it effectually proves that it has not yet taken place. For Jehovah’s prophecies are far too accurate and particular for this suddenness and completeness to be fulfilled by the gradual decay of old Babylon, the site and ruins and remains of which are still to be seen in the land of Shinar.34
“She shall be burned with fire” (ἐν πυρὶ κατακαυθήσεταὶ [en pyri katakauthēsetai] ) corresponds closely to the κατακαύσουσιν ἐν πυρί [katakausousin en pyri] of Rev. 17:16+ and must be the same destruction.35she will be utterly burned with fire
Thus says the LORD of hosts: “The children of Israel were oppressed, along with the children of Judah; all who took them captive have held them fast; they have refused to let them go. Their Redeemer is strong; the LORD of hosts is His name. He will thoroughly plead their case, that He may give rest to the land, and disquiet the inhabitants of Babylon.” (Jer. 50:33-34) [emphasis added]
These are the seven kings who have co-reigned with the Antichrist and submitted their authority to the Antichrist, the king of Babylon. Whatever power or authority they held, was held by the grace of Babylon. Seeing their authority waning with Babylon’s destruction, they will lament the swiftness of the judgment. They will be able to see the smoke of Babylon afar off, for they will see it from the Valley of Jezreel in Israel.36We believe the distinction between The Great Harlot and the city to be arbitrary and that the text identifies the Harlot as the city. See One or Two Babylons?. Since Scripture records that the city will be hated and made desolate by the Beast and his kings (Rev. 17:16-18+), the kings who bemoan her destruction are not those allied with the beast, but other kings of the earth which Scripture mentions at the time of the end (Rev. 16:12-14+; 17:2+; 18:3+, 7+; 19:18-19+).37
We have before noted that “the ten kings” are never seen apart from the Beast; and “the kings of the earth” are never seen apart from Babylon. It is the former who hate and burn Babylon; it is the latter who weep and wail over her. In both chapters (Rev. 17+ and 18+) the city is called “Babylon the great.” God and man both so call her. This great city cannot be separated from her own corrupt religion. They must be connected together, just as chapters 17+ and 18+ are connected; and yet distinguished as they are there distinguished.38See commentary on Revelation 17:16.when they see the smoke of her burning
Happy is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding; for her proceeds are better than the profits of silver, and her gain than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies, and all the things you may desire cannot compare with her. Length of days is in her right hand, in her left hand riches and honor. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her, and happy are all who retain her. (Pr. 3:13-18)
The articles divide themselves into seven categories: (1) precious wares (gold, silver, precious stones, pearls); (2) materials of rich attire (fine linen, purple, silk, scarlet); (3) materials for costly furniture (all thyine wood, every vessel of ivory, of most precious wood, brass, iron, marble); (4) precious spices (cinnamon, spice, incense, ointment, frankincense); (5) articles of food (wine, oil, fine flour, wheat); (6) merchandise for agricultural and domestic uses (cattle, sheep, horses, chariots); (7) traffic in men (bodies, the souls of men) (Lee). John drew the list from items known in his day, not from the future time depicted in the prophecy (Alford).41
The international traffic in forced prostitution, both of men and women, is a tragic but financially lucrative business of modern times and will undoubtedly become even bigger in the evil days ahead. These vice barons are particularly venomous “great men” of the earth, not only amassing great wealth for themselves, but destroying both the “bodies and souls” of the hapless girls and boys who come under their control.47
Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever (1Jn. 2:15-17).the things which are rich and splendid
But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: for men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God. (2Ti. 3:1-4) [emphasis added]you shall find them no more at all
Rawlinson [Herodotus, i. 512] speaks of the Euphrates as being navigable for ships for some 500 miles from its mouth. And with little effort could be made available for ships of large size.50
Today these two streams [the Tigris and the Euphrates] are joined together and flow as one river, the Shatt el-Arab, 190 km (120 mi) to the gulf, where the water is deep enough for warships.51There are a number of possible ways that commercial shipping could reach a rebuilt Babylon:
Rome was not a major seaport or trading city. Rome was never a great city of commerce described in Revelation 18+. Revelation 18:17+ actually fits Babylon better than Rome because Rome had no seaport. . . . Revelation 18:17-18+ which describes those who make their living from the sea standing a far off and wailing at the sight of Babylon’s destruction, fits well with the geography of Babylon on the Euphrates. In ancient times, the Euphrates was navigable for ships for some 500 miles from its mouth.53
It is perfectly well known that Rome was never either “great” or commercial. It is no Port; and no “shipmaster” goes thither. . . . if Rome be the city, Rome must yet become the great political and religious centre; with port and harbour. And it is quite as difficult to believe in this revival of Rome, as to believe in the revival of Babylon.54See Babylon is Rome?
The apostles and prophets, leaders of the saints of all ages, who have, themselves, borne the brunt of the world’s hatred, are given special prominence in the rejoicing. . . . Take Paul for an example. He pointed out that he and the other apostles had been chosen by God for special sufferings [1Cor. 4:9-13].55God has avenged you on her
So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that would come upon Babylon, all these words that are written against Babylon. And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, “When you arrive in Babylon and see it, and read all these words, then you shall say, ‘O LORD, You have spoken against this place to cut it off, so that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but it shall be desolate forever.’ Now it shall be, when you have finished reading this book, that you shall tie a stone to it and throw it out into the Euphrates. Then you shall say, ‘Thus Babylon shall sink and not rise from the catastrophe that I will bring upon her. And they shall be weary.’ ” Thus far are the words of Jeremiah. (Jer. 51:60-64) [emphasis added]Jeremiah’s declaration is another evidence which points to Babylon of the end being the literal city reconstructed on the banks of the Euphrates. For Seraiah was sent to the literal city in order to declare a literal judgment over her. The judgment he read has never been fulfilled in history (see Babylon’s Historic Fall). At the time of the end, the words of God regarding the city, as written by Jeremiah and declared by Seraiah, will find their ultimate fulfillment in the destruction of the rebuilt city of old. See Babylon is Babylon!.
Every word is employed to impress us with its suddenness and completeness. And inasmuch as all other fulfilled prophecies have been fulfilled to the very letter; and Babylon, though fallen gradually, and very low, has never suffered such a destruction. There is only one conclusion . . . it will be revived, and exceed all its former magnificence.57Jesus alluded to Jeremiah’s predicted destruction of Babylon when he taught about the gravity of “causing one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin” (Mat. 18:6; Mark 9:42; Luke 17:2).Thus with violence
So far as this present world is concerned, the general verdict of mankind, sustained by the great current of human history for 6,000 years is against the faith and testimonies of the saints, apostles, and prophets of God. To the general population of the earth their profession stands branded as mere hallucination and lies. But at last their vindication comes. When the vaunted wisdom, and progress, and experiments of unregenerate man are consummated, and there is nothing to show from it but a valley of burning cinders and desolation, with the whole earth from highest kings to meanest subjects howling in helpless lamentations, terror, and despair, history will have added its seal to all that the saints, apostles, and prophets have said and maintained. Then will their judgment have been judged out of that world which despised and persecuted them, and spurned their hated pessimism for more flattering philosophies.66
1 E. W. Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1984, 1935), Rev. 18:10.
2 Charles Feinberg, The Prophecy of Ezekiel: The Glory of the Lord (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1969), 150.
3 Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 18:1.
4 Alan F. Johnson, Revelation: The Expositor’s Bible Commentary (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1966), Rev. 18:1.
5 Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 18:1.
6 Many commentators miss the importance of the aorist tense here: “One has only to walk down the main streets of a great city like New York or London to see the aptness of such a description. Lust is unbridled and tens of thousands of girls each year go on their way to prostitution.”—Donald Grey Barnhouse, Revelation (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1971), 337. Similarly: “The first cause given for Babylon’s destruction is that she has become a dwelling place of demons and a prison of every unclean spirit.”—John MacArthur, Revelation 12-22 : The MacArthur New Testament Commentary (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 2000), Rev. 18:1. Yet the angel is not describing the condition of the city before its fall, but afterwards, as is made plain by the parallel passages in Isaiah and Jeremiah which describe her demonized condition as the result of her destruction (Isa. 13:21-22; 14:23; Jer. 50:39; 51:37). Although demons undoubtedly frequent major cities, they are not imprisoned there as this verse describes. “Evidence of the city’s fall is its transition into ‘the habitation of demons.’ ”—Robert L. Thomas, Revelation 8-22 (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1995), Rev. 18:2.
7 “With its destruction, Babylon is to become a habitation of demons. This will be the dwelling place of demonic abode and confinement during the Messianic Age.”—Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, The Footsteps of Messiah, rev ed. (Tustin, CA: Ariel Ministries, 2003), 330.
8 Timothy Friberg, Barbara Friberg, and Neva F. Miller, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2000), 226.
9 Frederick William Danker and Walter Bauer, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2000), 867.
10 Friberg, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, 403.
11 James Swanson, Dictionary of Biblical Languages With Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament), electronic ed. (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, 1997), H6716.
12 James Strong, The Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible (Ontario: Woodside Bible Fellowship, 1996), H8162.
13 Swanson, Dictionary of Biblical Languages With Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament), H8163.
14 W. E. Vine, Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words (Nashville, IL: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1996), H8163.
15 “The city of Babylon on the Euphrates during the millennium will be a jail of demons. Compare Isaiah 24:21-23; which is millennial also, and the judgment upon Edom, in Isaiah 34:13-15; also millennial. (Of course these conditions give way to the last judgment—when the earth is destroyed, in Rev. 20:11-15+, and all lost beings are finally sentenced.)”—William R. Newell, Revelation: Chapter by Chapter (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1994,c1935), 286.
16 Fruchtenbaum, The Footsteps of Messiah, 512-513.
17 “The Committee was of the opinion that all three elements (each of which involves an allusion to Isa. 13:21; 34:11) probably belonged to the original text of Revelation; since, however, καὶ φυλακὴ παντὸς θηρίου ἀκαθάρτου [kai phylakē pantos thēriou akathartou] is absent from such important witnesses as א 2053 2080 vg al, it was decided to enclose these words within square brackets.”—Bruce M. Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament (Stuttgart, Germany: Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, 1994), Rev. 18:2.
18 Friberg, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, 147.
19 Vine, Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, G1713.
20 Henry Morris, The Revelation Record (Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 1983), Rev. 18:11.
21 J. A. Seiss, The Apocalypse: Lectures on the Book of Revelation (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1966), 418.
22 Fruchtenbaum, The Footsteps of Messiah, 319.
23 “They were warned to flee from the land of the north, that is, from Babylon, so called because armies and trading caravans from that land entered Palestine from that direction due to the desert on the east and southeast (Jer. 1:13-14).”—Merrill F. Unger, Unger’s Commentary on the Old Testament (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 2002), Zec. 2:6. The context is immediately prior to the Millennial Kingdom: “Many nations shall be joined to the LORD in that day, and they shall become My people. And I will dwell in your midst. And the LORD will take possession of Judah as His inheritance in the Holy Land, and will again choose Jerusalem.” (Zec. 2:11-12).
24 Morris suggests the call comes earlier, before the mark has been imposed. [Morris, The Revelation Record, Rev. 18:4] But this seems unlikely given the immediacy of the warning and impending judgment and that the mark is in place by the time of the first bowl (Rev. 16:2+) whereas the destruction occurs at the seventh bowl (Rev. 16:19+).
25 Newell, Revelation: Chapter by Chapter, 287.
26 Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 774.
27 How many believers in our own day deny Biblical teachings out of sympathy with the ungodly culture? Bullinger suggests a figure of speech which puts the sins for judgment: “The word ‘sins’ is put by Metonymy for the judgment brought about by her sins. (Compare Jer. 51:9.) It is because God’s people will not have fellowship in her sins that this gracious call to ‘Come out’ from her judgments is given.”—Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 18:4.
28 Thomas, Revelation 8-22, Rev. 18:6.
29 Carl Friedrich Keil and Franz Delitzsch, Commentary on the Old Testament (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 2002), Jer. 50:21.
30 Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 771.
31 Friberg, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, 358.
32 MacArthur, Revelation 12-22 : The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, Rev. 18:3.
33 Ibid., Rev. 18:1.
34 Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 18:8.
35 Thomas, Revelation 8-22, Rev. 18:8.
36 Fruchtenbaum, The Footsteps of Messiah, 331.
37 Morris holds to the two-destructions view: “The kings of the earth had burned Mystery Babylon, the harlot religious system, with fire, but these same kings mourn the burning of commercial Babylon (Rev. 17:16+; 18:9+), so obviously these are not the same burnings.”—Morris, The Revelation Record, Rev. 18:8. His premise is incorrect. It is not the kings of the earth who destroy the harlot, but the ten kings with the Beast (Rev. 17:16+). Therefore, the mourning of the kings of the earth over the destruction of Babylon does not provide evidence for a different destruction of the city subsequent to that of the Harlot.
38 Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 18:9.
39 Morris, The Revelation Record, Rev. 18:10.
40 James Swanson, Dictionary of Biblical Languages With Semantic Domains : Greek (New Testament), electronic ed. (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, 1997), G1117.
41 Thomas, Revelation 8-22, Rev. 18:11.
42 Friberg, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, 342.
43 Fausset attempts to find fulfillment in Roman Catholicism: “Popery has derived its greatest gains from the sale of masses for the souls of men after death, and of indulgences purchased from the Papal chancery by rich merchants in various countries, to be retailed at a profit [Mosheim, III, 95, 96].”—A. R. Fausset, “The Revelation of St. John the Divine,” in Robert Jamieson, A. R. Fausset, and David Brown, A Commentary, Critical and Explanatory, on the Old and New Testaments (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997, 1877), Rev. 18:13.
44 Johnson, Revelation: The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Rev. 18:9-19.
45 Thomas, Revelation 8-22, Rev. 18:13.
46 Barnhouse, Revelation, 341.
47 Morris, The Revelation Record, Rev. 18:13.
48 Friberg, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, 172.
49 “The Euphrates is about 2,890 kilometers (1,780 miles) long and is navigable for smaller vessels for about 1,950 kilometers (1,200 miles).”—Ronald F. Youngblood and R. K. Harrison, eds., Nelson’s New Illustrated Bible Dictionary (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 1997, c1995), s.v. “Euphrates.” “The entire course is 1780 miles, and of this distance more than two-thirds (1200 miles is navigable for boats).”—William Smith, Smith’s Bible Dictionary (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 1997), s.v. “Euphrates.”
50 Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 18:17.
51 C. E. Harrington and W. S. Lasor, “Euphrates,” in Geoffrey W. Bromiley, ed., International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1979, 1915), 2:203.
52 Some recognize the unsuitability of Rome, but are so set in their identification of Babylon as Rome, they attempt to circumvent Rome’s failure in fulfillment by spiritualizing the commerce: “Rome was not a commercial city, and is not likely from her position to be so. The merchandise must therefore be spiritual, even as the harlot is not literal, but spiritual.”—Fausset, The Revelation of St. John the Divine, Rev. 18:10.
53 Andy Woods, What is the Identity of Babylon In Revelation 17-18?.
54 Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 18:1.
55 Barnhouse, Revelation, 344.
56 Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 450.
57 Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation, Rev. 17:21-23.
58 Friberg, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, 379.
59 Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 854.
60 Friberg, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, 397.
61 Several of which are available at most supermarket checkout stands in our own country.
62 “We can be certain that, in the wicked and terrifying days of the tribulation, ungodly men will turn to intoxicants and drugs far more than ever in history. . . . The great demand for intoxicants and drugs in these coming days will surely be further stimulated by the ungodly and covetous merchants who profit so greatly from them.”—Morris, The Revelation Record, Rev. 18:13.
63 This is one of many reasons why Satan will be confined during the Millennial Kingdom, so that he shall no longer deceive the nations (Rev. 20:3+).
64 Concerning prohibitions against witchcraft and sorcery: Ex. 22:18; Lev. 19:26, 31; Deu. 18:10; 2Chr. 33:6; Isa. 8:19; 19:3; 44:25; Acts 16:16; Gal. 5:20; Rev. 18:23+; 21:8+; 22:15+.
65 Danker, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, 796.
66 Seiss, The Apocalypse: Lectures on the Book of Revelation, 418.