Friday, October 9, 2015

The Prophecy Sent To Babylon

Jeremiah 51:53-64

“Though Babylon should mount up to heaven, and though she should fortify the height of her strength, yet from me shall spoilers come unto her, saith the LORD.  A sound of a cry cometh from Babylon, and great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans: Because the LORD hath spoiled Babylon, and destroyed out of her the great voice; when her waves do roar like great waters, a noise of their voice is uttered: Because the spoiler is come upon her, even upon Babylon, and her mighty men are taken, every one of their bows is broken: for the LORD God of recompenses shall surely requite.  And I will make drunk her princes, and her wise men, her captains, and her rulers, and her mighty men: and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, saith the King, whose name is the LORD of hosts.  Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly broken, and her high gates shall be burned with fire; and the people shall labour in vain, and the folk in the fire, and they shall be weary.” (Jeremiah 51:53-58)

God is going to bring judgment on Babylon regardless what they may do to try to prevent it.  Her  power and influence will be destroyed by those who have been dominated by her, as described in Revelation 17:15-18.  “And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues.  And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire.  For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.  And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.” 

As so often happens, the Babylonian leadership will be so drunk on power and implementing their own agenda they ignore the plight of their subjects, and by the time they realize how serious the situation has become, they will be destroyed and the city razed. God will use their own subjects to punish them just as he has throughout history.

“The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Maaseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah into Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. And this Seraiah was a quiet prince.  So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written against Babylon.  And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, When thou comest to Babylon, and shalt see, and shalt read all these words; Then shalt thou say, O LORD, thou hast spoken against this place, to cut it off, that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever.” (Jeremiah 51:59-62)

In the fourth year of Zedekiah’s reign, He went to Babylon to meet with Nebuchadnezzar.  On member of his retinue was a quiet godly official named Seraiah.  Jeremiah wrote out the prophecies against Babylon and gave to scroll Seraiah.  He was to read the scroll before the king and then call on the lord to fulfill his word, that the city would be cut off and no one ever live there again. 

“And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of Euphrates: And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.” (Jeremiah 51:63-64)

When he finished reading the scroll, Seraiah was to tie a rock to it and cast it into the Euphrates River, proclaiming that Babylon would sink just as the scroll did and never recover or be rebuilt.  Revelation 18:21-24 describes the fulfillment of this prophecy.  “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.  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; 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.  And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth.”

A review of Babylon’s history shows these prophecies have never yet been fulfilled.  Almost sixty years after Babylon was conquered by the Medo-Persian Empire in Daniel 5, and about forty years before the Greeks began invading the Persian Empire, Zechariah 5:5-11 gave the following prophecy.  “Then the angel that talked with me went forth, and said unto me, Lift up now thine eyes, and see what is this that goeth forth.   

And I said, What is it?

And he said, This is an ephah that goeth forth. He said moreover, This is their resemblance through all the earth.  And, behold, there was lifted up a talent of lead: and this is a woman that sitteth in the midst of the ephah.  And he said, This is wickedness.  And he cast it into the midst of the ephah; and he cast the weight of lead upon the mouth thereof.  

Then lifted I up mine eyes, and looked, and, behold, there came out two women, and the wind was in their wings; for they had wings like the wings of a stork: and they lifted up the ephah between the earth and the heaven.  Then said I to the angel that talked with me, Whither do these bear the ephah?

And he said unto me, To build it an house in the land of Shinar: and it shall be established, and set there upon her own base.”

Zechariah’s prophecies relate to the tribulation and return of Christ to establish his earthly kingdom.  It is very clear that at that time the land of Shinar, the area where Babylon is located will be a center of great wickedness.  Those who have taught that Babylon represents Rome or the United states have overlooked this and various other passages. 

Zechariah’s prophecy was made about a hundred years after Jeremiah made this prophecy against Babylon.  

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