The Fall of Babylon the Great

Read: Revelation 18

The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever. (1 John 2:17, NIV)

An angel shines light on a dark earth shouting: “Fallen! Fallen, is Babylon the Great!” Humans destroy their natural habitat and civilization. Then a voice from heaven says, “Come out, my people!” It’s time to flee!

Kings wail! Merchants mourn loss of commerce and industry. Shipmasters lament empty ships. Their cargo list of luxury imports includes slaves. But now money has no value. The use of “in a single day” (v. 8) and “in a single hour” (v. 17, 19) shows no one expected total economic collapse. A mighty angel hurls a millstone into the sea, sign of finality. Six times he says that never again will there be the sound of music or tools of an artisan or farmer. No weddings, no sound of children playing. Not a single lamp! Only smoking ruins, eerie silence, total darkness.

But there’s beauty in our sad world. I am sure God loves Handel’s “Messiah,” all beautiful music, fine architecture and art. When he made us in his image, he made us able to love beauty and create it. He gave us a mandate for the arts and sciences (Gen. 1:26). Many human works glorify God. Will he save any? Some think he will (Eph. 1:10; Col. 1:20). But no art or music here compares with our life with Jesus in the new heaven and earth! —Ruth Siemens

As you pray, ask God to guide your priorities and use of time.

About the Author

Ruth Siemens was a campus minister with IVCF/IFES, then started Global Opportunities to prepare professionals to work and witness in secular employment abroad.

This entry is part 21 of 30 in the series Revelation