The Fall of Babylon

Text: Revelation 18

The U.S. is becoming more of an immoral & godless country. Some have speculated that we are moving closer to the time when God will bring about this nation’s downfall. While we may be moving toward a downfall (Proverbs 14:34), we need to be careful about speculating too much about what God is actively doing (Amos 3:7). But sin has consequences – not all of them are the result of God’s direct action. But as we look at the fall of “Babylon,” we find important lessons for us to remember today.

Kingdoms of Men Do Not Last Forever (v. 2)

  • The wise man said that “a crown [does not] endure forever” (Proverbs 27:24)
  • Daniel prophesied of the destruction of world powers (Daniel 2:37-40, 44) – contrasted with God’s kingdom which would “never be destroyed
  • Our hope must not rest in the kingdoms of men, but in the kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33; Philippians 3:20)

Nations Can Have a Strong Influence for Sin (v. 3)

  • Kings committed immorality with her… merchants profited from her immorality
  • Civil authorities are supposed to be ministers of God for good (Romans 13:4) – but often this is not the case
  • They actively support wickedness (Psalm 2:1-3) – they do not want to be bound by God’s law

Christians Are to Be a Separate People (v. 4)

  • Most of the time, this will not mean physical separation (1 Corinthians 5:9-10) – do not “participate in her sins“; be a separate people (Romans 12:2; 1 Peter 2:11)
  • Do not be enamored with power (Revelation 18:9-10) – divine wisdom is more valuable than power (Ecclesiastes 4:13; 7:19)
  • Do not be enticed by wealth (Revelation 18:11-19) – our souls are more valuable than anything in the world (Matthew 16:26); therefore, be content in whatever state we find ourselves (Philippians 4:11; 3:7-8)

God Does Not Forget/Ignore Sin (v. 5)

  • It can be discouraging when the wicked seem to prosper (Psalm 73:3) – do not envy them (Proverbs 23:17)
  • God is not slow, but patient (2 Peter 3:9) – judgment will come (2 Peter 3:10)
  • Though it may not be immediately apparent, it is better to fear God & obey Him (Ecclesiastes 7:15; 8:12-13)

God Will Judge (v. 6-8)

  • The Bible speaks of God’s judgment against nations – we do not see the same type of judgment today (Amos 3:7)
  • Instead, God judges us solely as individuals (2 Corinthians 5:10)
  • Judgment is according to His word (John 12:48) – we must conform our lives to it

Rejoice in God (v. 20)

  • Trouble was coming – these Christians were warned that they might escape the plagues (Revelation 18:4)
  • But there would still be hardships as the fall of the nation would bring the fall of the economy
  • Even in difficult circumstances, they were still to rejoice in the Lord (cf. 1 Peter 1:6-9)

Wicked Nations Persecute Christians (v. 24)

  • This is what we need to prepare for – our nation is becoming more immoral & ungodly
  • The more they turn away from God, the more they will persecute those who believe in God
  • Be ready (2 Timothy 3:12) – do not abandon your faith (Hebrews 11:35)

Conclusion

  • The Scriptures do not prophesy of God’s judgment against the U.S. for its sinfulness – so to talk about God bringing about this nation’s downfall is speculation & not of faith (Romans 10:17)
  • But there are consequences for sin – difficulties arise when people (and nations) turn from God
  • The description of the fall of Babylon is helpful as we prepare for an uncertain future

Listen to this lesson: The Fall of Babylon


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