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Exploring Revelation
11503
“Revelation 18:9-16”
by Art Sadlier   
September 26th, 2010

Verse 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,"

Let me remind you that in chapter 18 we have judgment on Babylon from man's perspective. In chapter 19 we have the judgment of Babylon from God's perspective. The key verse in chapter 19, is verse 15, "And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God."

In verse 9 of chapter 18 we read, "They shall see the smoke of her burning," that is man's perspective on Babylon's judgment. The world will view the destruction of Antichrist's capital city, Rome. Rome is the capital of the old Roman Empire and is naturally the capital of the Revived Roman Empire. We know that Antichrist sets up a headquarters in Jerusalem, but that does not change the fact that Rome is the capital of religious Babylon as well as political Babylon.

Verse 9, "Who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her," In the last three and a half years of the tribulation period we see the greatest two class system in the history of the world. Just as in both communism and capitalism there are the poor and oppressed and there are the rich and privileged. So also in this new world order of Antichrist there are two classes. We see this in Revelation 6:6, "And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine." We see here the contrast of the rich and poor.

To live deliciously = to live in luxury, to live sensually. I have everything I desire and I control my destiny. I am my own god. All of this prosperity has resulted because the rulers of the nations have submitted to the control of Antichrist, and have taken his mark. When the judgment of God falls on the kingdom of Antichrist, all the wealth and privilege is swept away.

"Shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning," The world will see the fall of Rome and be shocked and grieved over the loss that will reflect on them as well. The world markets will collapse, all they had grasped onto courtesy of Antichrist is swept away.

Verse 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." The destruction is so great and terrible that world stands back in disbelief and fear at the sight.

"In one hour is thy judgment come," The destruction of Rome is so awesome because it comes from Christ Himself. Revelation 19:21, describes this awesome moment. "And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh." We see here that God will allow witnesses to this fearsome event.

We get a further insight, "in one hour." This termination of the kingdom of Antichrist will come suddenly and instantly.

The process going on in these verses is the total collapse of the kingdom of Antichrist. Every aspect is destroyed, beginning with the collapse of the economy which was the glory of this evil kingdom.

Revelation 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."

The god of materialism is swept away, the god of things. These are the idols that replace God in the hearts of men. The goose that had laid the golden egg, is gone up in flames. All of this is just the eschatalogical culmination of 6,000 years of man selling his soul for the almighty dollar and what it can give in the way of pleasure and pride. All in place of what God gives in Peace and Satisfaction and Joy to those who seek Him.

Verse 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." A momentary gratification of the flesh is now gone and in its place an eternity of judgment.

Verse 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," After all of seeming glory of Antichrist's kingdom, all that is left is fear and torment and weeping and wailing. These who have watched this whole scenario unfold from the beginning are not innocent bystanders; they made a deliberate choice to follow Antichrist and to receive his mark. They chose out of evil hearts of unbelief to gratify the flesh and turn away from God and His Christ.

Verse 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!" Babylon will produce material riches far greater than the world has ever seen. We have seen that scenario beginning to unfold over the last fifty years. It will reach a climax by the ingenuity of the beast and with Satan's help. But it will come to a climax in one hour!

Pressed into three and a half years; the whole story of man's attempt to build a utopia on earth without God will climax and come to an end in the judgment of God. The climax of man's worship of the creation (materialism) rather than the creator.

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