What would trigger the beginning of the 7-year Tribulation, also called the Day of the Lord? It would be when the Antichrist will sign a 7-year peace treaty with Israel, as prophesied in Daniel 9:24-27. So, how will this individual operate, and under what kind of banner? This is when we come to our study for today for the Scriptures have so much to say about this particular individual and His empire.
As the Bible prophesied concerning the formation of 20 main nations which we see rising today as well as others, there is still one more, a distinct one that the Scriptures put so much emphasis on. That one is much more than a nation, it is more like an evil spiritual empire, one that the Bible says today is on the rise.
This nation is Babel or Babylon. It is part of much neglected prophecy but it is all over our Bible. The reason we use the term Babel is because in the Hebrew Scriptures the word Babylon is simply not there, but it has always been called Babel. It would have been better for the translators to have left the name alone, for this word Babel will always bring us back to the root of evil, which is rebellion against God.
The word Babel is mentioned 262 times in the Tanakh and translators have given it the Greek name Babylon. Only twice has it been left in its original form Babel as we see in Genesis 10 & 11 describing the Tower of Babel. Babel means gate of god, another god, but the Bible calls it confusion, Balal. We see this today. Nations are no more restrained by language differences and so they fight each other and much of this generates confuision.
There are however, other mentions of Babel in the Bible, for it also retains other names. In the Tanakh, the people of Babel are called Chaldeans 91 times. This designates its religious nature, for it describes Babel’s priests in the Book of Daniel. Another name is Shinar used 8 times to describe the land itself. Babel was built in the land of Shinar.
And considering the history of Babel, we always find it working against Israel. Its first mention is the Tower of Babel, as the story of this tower interrupts the genealogy of the Messiah which began in chapter 10. It cuts in at the genealogy of Shem as if it wanted to cut off the account of Israel’s history.
The next time we see the Babylonians, they did cut the people of Israel from their land. They are the first nation to have caused her exiled back in 586 BC. Yeshua named this era the Times of the Gentiles in Luke 21:24, and this dispensation continues into today. In the meantime, prophets like Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and others have given so many prophecies concerning its final destruction.
The last time we hear of Babel or Babylon is in the last book of the Bible, Revelation17-18, two chapters dealing with its future resurgence and fall. These two chapters are placed just before the account of the Second Coming of the Messiah in Revelation 19. Babel then, represents the final world powers, physical and spiritual, which will for the last time, try to prevent the Coming of Yeshua, but it will not prevail. Babel is more than a tower. It is more than a city, or a civilization. It is an evil spirit of rebellion and it is still alive and well today because its demise has not yet happened. Notice its rise in Genesis and its fall in Revelation, having stayed with us for much of the course of human history.
Rabbinic commentators, even without the book of Revelation have seen and understood that the final destruction of Babel will usher in the Messiah. They used the name Babel to describe the enemies of Israel. For example, they called the Romans, Babel. We have seen that they also used the name of Edom when describing the enemy, but they say that Edom is the daughter of Babel, both hindering the works of God. (ʿAbod. Zar. 1.39C.33; b. Šabb. 56B; b. Sanh. 21B). They call Rome the daugher of the Chaldeans ( Isa. 47:1, TanḥumaB תזריע sec. 16, 21B).
Let us begin to look at a few prophecies concerning Babel from the Hebrew Scriptures and then we will turn to Revelation 17-18. In these two chapters there are two Babylons that are described, both with the same head. Revelation 17 is the religious or ecclesiatical Babel which is apostate nominal Christianity, the rule of the Loadicean church, as Yeshua prophesied this at the beginning of this book. While very rich and wealthy it is a dead church. Revelation 18 is the political Babel; the ruler of this world.
Concerning her religious aspect, see the name that she carries on her forehead, “BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” Why is her name written on the forehead? She has become a kind of world priestess. This reminds us of what God’s High Priest wore at the Temple. He wore a frontlet, that is, a strip made of gold surrounding the forehead with the words Holy to the Lord (Exodus 28:36-37) for he represented the holy God to His people. Here is the false High Priestess representing Babel and wearing the head band with the words, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” Two opposites; Babel against the Holiness of God.
And concerning her political reign, Revelation 18 really goes a long way to repeat and stress the vanity of this world for man will bet his eternal future on these temporal gains. There are two surprising verses in this chapter; vs.12-13 where we have listed 29 different articles that the people of the world love to have. It begins with gold. We read in history that at the time, social status and personal happiness were measured by the amount of gold one had (WBC/Pliny).
It mentions fine linen, same type of linen (Bussinos / Byssos) as in the story of the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16. The rich one is seen in Hades, thirsty and with much regret. The fine linen could not save him.
But it is the last item which by itself really uncovers for us what Babel and the one who rules it really desires: the souls of men. This is it; the Psyche, this is Satan’ ultimate goal. This is what he is after and he continues to lure man, like one who lures a child with candies of gold and silver until the child has been won over. We praise the Lord he does not always win man over to his side.
All these articles listed here are bait which will trap the most intelligent and educated of men; but this is why we have this account here, so that they will read it and wake up because of it.