|A92 : by Andy Woods |
To answer this question, I would recommend Mark Hitchcock's book The Second Coming of Babylona where he has an entire chapter dedicated toward answering this question (chapter 10).
His answer is threefold.
First, because Babylon will be controlled by the Antichrist from the west at the time of some of these battles from eastern Muslim powers early on in the Tribulation, it stands to reason that Babylon would not be involved in these conflicts.
Second, God's destruction of the Islamic coalition as depicted in Ezek 38-39 will set the stage for the Antichrist to solidify his power in Babylon.
Third, because Babylon is destined to be destroyed at the end of the Tribulation (Rev 16:19) she cannot be involved in the destruction of an Islamic invading force that seems to be eradicated mid way through the Tribulation.
I have great respect for Renald Showers and agree with most of his prophetic interpretations. However, it is important to understand that Babylon is one of the areas that some of the older dispensationalists like Showers (and the Scofield reference Bible) failed to consistently apply a literal hermeneutic.
Because the historicist interpretation has typically spiritualized Rev 17-18, we are living under the shadow of that interpretation. While dispensationalists have rescued prophecy from most spiritualizing interpretations, older dispensationalists never went far enough in literally construing Babylon. The significance of the work of Charles Dyer and Robert Thomas is that they applied a literal hermeneutic to all areas of prophecy, including Babylon.
I heard Showers discussing Babylon a couple of years ago on the John Ankerberg Show. He was using some old arguments that Babylon was not meant to be interpreted literally because her title is Mystery Babylon. However, this old argument has been exegetically refuted (see volume 2 of Thomas' Revelation Commentaryb on Revelation 17:5).