The Battle

babylon

I’m using a very long passage  from Isaiah. Not going to try to go line by line, but I will give an overview. Take the time to read what the great prophet has to say, it’s worth reading!
One thing to understand in reading the bible is this – that Babylon, during the time of Isaiah a very real “city”, represents much more than just a city in time. Babylon represents the world’s system man has built in his defiance of God. In short, Babylon is the ongoing biblical symbol of empire.

 

Jerusalem is the chosen city of God. So much of the story of the bible is the story of the battle between Babylon and Jerusalem, the battle between the “Ha-Satan” (which in the old Hebrew simply means “the accuser” or “the adversary”) and the Kingdom of God. Read the Gospels and you will find that is all Jesus ever talked about. Every sermon, every miracle, in everything He did He was pointing to and preaching about the Kingdom of God.

kingdom-of-god

Babylon vs Jerusalem. Now, Babylon vs New Jerusalem. Jesus is building His city, the New Jerusalem. “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew‬ ‭6:10‬ ‭ESV‬. In Revelation we see this image -“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.” ‭‭Revelation‬ ‭21:1-2‬ ‭NLT‬‬. The battle is happening right here, right now. Jesus IS building His city. We are all wrapped up in what happens when we die, but the battle for the Kingdom of God is right here on the turf of the Satan. It is all around us. Babylon is still fighting with its weapons of power and force, fear and accusation, blame, shame and scapegoating. Jesus is building His army around His axis of love.

sodom-and-gomorrah
Babylon, the most glorious of kingdoms, the flower of Chaldean pride, will be devastated like Sodom and Gomorrah when God destroyed them. Babylon will never be inhabited again. It will remain empty for generation after generation. For the earthly city of Babylon, that happened during the time of Daniel. “That very night Belshazzar, the Babylonian king, was killed. And Darius the Mede took over the kingdom at the age of sixty-two.” Daniel‬ ‭5:30-31‬ ‭NLT‬‬. Babylon had some life after this, but disappeared completely after Alexander the Great. But Babylon, the symbol of empire, lives on. But, just like the literal city, all earthly empire will ultimately go the way of Babylon – Babylon’s days are numbered; its time of destruction will soon arrive.

 

But the LORD will have mercy on the descendants of Jacob. He will choose Israel as his special people once again. He will bring them back to settle once again in their own land. And people from many different nations will come and join them there and unite with the people of Israel. The nations of the world will help the people of Israel to return, and those who come to live in the LORD’s land will serve them. Those who captured Israel will themselves be captured, and Israel will rule over its enemies. In that wonderful day when the LORD gives his people rest from sorrow and fear, from slavery and chains, you will taunt the king of Babylon. The Hebrew nation probably took Darius the Mede’s conquest as some fulfilling of this scripture, but for us it means – Jesus has come, and He will come again!!

kingdom-of-heaven
In the place of the dead there is excitement over your arrival. The spirits of world leaders and mighty kings long dead stand up to see you. With one voice they all cry out, ‘Now you are as weak as we are! Your might and power were buried with you. The sound of the harp in your palace has ceased. Now maggots are your sheet, and worms your blanket.’ “How you are fallen from heaven, O shining star, son of the morning! You have been thrown down to the earth, you who destroyed the nations of the world. For you said to yourself, ‘I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars. I will preside on the mountain of the gods far away in the north. I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High.’ Every empire aspires to be like God. They all set themselves up to be worshipped, they all have their “holy” sites. But they will all come to an end, all will arrive at the place of the dead, where there will be much excitement at their arrival. But the excitement will soon pass, the empire never had any real power.

its-a-morning-star-43605

How you are fallen from heaven, O shining star, son of the morning! You have been thrown down to the earth. In the old King James Version this is translated “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭14:12‬ ‭KJV‬. We all understand Lucifer to be the angel cast out of heaven to become Satan, but this is his only mention in the bible. He thought he would be like the most high God, Isaiah the prophet uses him as another symbol for empire on the earth. “Lucifer” is Latin for “morning star”. He is the symbol here for empire because just as the kings glory does not last very long, neither will his. The morning star will shine, but is quickly swallowed up by the light of the sun (Son!). Satan is known as Lucifer, the morning star, because he is a cheap imitation of our Christ – ““I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this message for the churches. I am both the source of David and the heir to his throne. I am the bright morning star.”” ‭‭Revelation‬ ‭22:16‬ ‭NLT‬‬.

sunrise
And the battle rages on…

“Babylon, the most glorious of kingdoms, the flower of Chaldean pride, will be devastated like Sodom and Gomorrah when God destroyed them. Babylon will never be inhabited again. It will remain empty for generation after generation. Nomads will refuse to camp there, and shepherds will not bed down their sheep. Desert animals will move into the ruined city, and the houses will be haunted by howling creatures. Owls will live among the ruins, and wild goats will go there to dance. Hyenas will howl in its fortresses, and jackals will make dens in its luxurious palaces. Babylon’s days are numbered; its time of destruction will soon arrive.”

‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭13:19-22‬ ‭NLT‬‬

http://bible.com/116/isa.13.19-22.nlt
“But the LORD will have mercy on the descendants of Jacob. He will choose Israel as his special people once again. He will bring them back to settle once again in their own land. And people from many different nations will come and join them there and unite with the people of Israel. The nations of the world will help the people of Israel to return, and those who come to live in the LORD’s land will serve them. Those who captured Israel will themselves be captured, and Israel will rule over its enemies. In that wonderful day when the LORD gives his people rest from sorrow and fear, from slavery and chains, you will taunt the king of Babylon. You will say, “The mighty man has been destroyed. Yes, your insolence is ended. For the LORD has crushed your wicked power and broken your evil rule. You struck the people with endless blows of rage and held the nations in your angry grip with unrelenting tyranny. But finally the earth is at rest and quiet. Now it can sing again! Even the trees of the forest— the cypress trees and the cedars of Lebanon— sing out this joyous song: ‘Since you have been cut down, no one will come now to cut us down!’ “In the place of the dead there is excitement over your arrival. The spirits of world leaders and mighty kings long dead stand up to see you. With one voice they all cry out, ‘Now you are as weak as we are! Your might and power were buried with you. The sound of the harp in your palace has ceased. Now maggots are your sheet, and worms your blanket.’ “How you are fallen from heaven, O shining star, son of the morning! You have been thrown down to the earth, you who destroyed the nations of the world. For you said to yourself, ‘I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars. I will preside on the mountain of the gods far away in the north. I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High.’ Instead, you will be brought down to the place of the dead, down to its lowest depths. Everyone there will stare at you and ask, ‘Can this be the one who shook the earth and made the kingdoms of the world tremble? Is this the one who destroyed the world and made it into a wasteland? Is this the king who demolished the world’s greatest cities and had no mercy on his prisoners?’ “The kings of the nations lie in stately glory, each in his own tomb, but you will be thrown out of your grave like a worthless branch. Like a corpse trampled underfoot, you will be dumped into a mass grave with those killed in battle. You will descend to the pit. You will not be given a proper burial, for you have destroyed your nation and slaughtered your people. The descendants of such an evil person will never again receive honor. Kill this man’s children! Let them die because of their father’s sins! They must not rise and conquer the earth, filling the world with their cities.” This is what the LORD of Heaven’s Armies says: “I, myself, have risen against Babylon! I will destroy its children and its children’s children,” says the LORD. “I will make Babylon a desolate place of owls, filled with swamps and marshes. I will sweep the land with the broom of destruction. I, the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, have spoken!””

‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭14:1-23‬ ‭NLT‬‬

http://bible.com/116/isa.14.1-23.nlt

John Lewis

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8 thoughts on “The Battle

  1. Good one.

    “Every empire aspires to be like God. They all set themselves up to be worshipped…”

    They (we) have been doing this since Babel. (Empire = tower = Babylon) They went out on the plains of Shinar to make a name for themselves. We still do it today.

    Good post. We must choose a side in this battle, but Republicans and Democrats are both on the wrong side. (That’s my 2 bits).

    Thanx for illuminating this stuff.

    btw, I wonder if you ever read Colossians Remixed: Subverting The Empire by Walsh n Keesemaat… ?

    X

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Babel did begat Babylon didn’t it??

      Bo, haven’t read that book, but I will look for it. Yes, we need to chose a side, but it ain’t the donkeys or the elephants. Must be the lamb…

      Like

  2. Nice picture, and good imagery. Enjoyed it. Pretty much what my Pastor teaches, the Kingdom is here as Jesus said, and we are to become Disciples who make more Disciples to be part of that Kingdom of Peace. We are also fighting against things which we cannot see with our eyes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. Yes, I believe we get caught up in what happens when we die, and all that is great, we all want to go to heaven. I just believe Jesus may have been talking more about heaven coming to us that us going to heaven.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I was just in New York City, and now I read your article here; several things struck me, most prominently how New York really is today’s Babylon. New York is the “Empire State,” self-proclaimed on every license plate on every car. NYC has the Empire State Building. It now also has the One World Trade Center.

    There’s a very large web site called Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing. I copied and pasted the text into a Word document, totaling almost 800 pages. Toward the end the author asks the reader to think of New York while reading Revelation’s description of Babylon. It fits frighteningly well! I’ve also realized that One World Trade Center is a bit different from it’s predecessors. World Trade Buildings 1 and 2. I think the “One” does not describe the number of the building, but echoes “One World Order.”

    I would recommend reading Jonathon Cahn’s “The Harbinger” and “The Mystery of the Shemitah.” Both describe 9/11 in terms of Old Testament prophecy. Once you understand his take on the current building, you’ll better understand the following.

    I visited St. Paul’s Chapel close to Ground Zero and spoke with a guard there. She confirmed much of what Cahn wrote; that the church is the only building in the area not damaged by falling debris, because a sycamore tree blocked significant rubble from reaching the chapel. The tree was destroyed in the process and was replaced, following original prophecy from Isaiah, with cedar. St. Paul’s is where George Washington led the first Congress in prayer.

    Cedar – which we should never have planted – died along with all of the plantings around it, and no one knows why. That symbolically represents the state our country. She also told me that One World Trade is virtually empty. They have as of yet found no companies to lease space in it. The symbol of our country’s resurgence and power is…empty.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is quite fitting that the building is empty, and I like how you tie it into the state of our nation. Revelation could be read to describe NYC, but I really believe it’s description of Babylon is prophetic only in the sense of understanding it applies to ALL empire. Maybe it’s really just a sign of our human condition that is still reads today like it was written….today. As Ecclesiastes tells us, there’s nothing new under the sun. We are really doing nothing today that has not been done before. We just have new and greater technology with which yo see it all faster and faster…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I can see the “all empire” interpretation too! Revelation is a tough nut to crack, so I’m not going to be dogmatic on any one interpretation of many sections. I just keep reading and trying to connect the dots! I think the more we read and discuss, the better we’ll do at understanding scripture. Of course, all extrabiblical reading/information has to be interpreted from a biblical standpoint, not the other way about!

        Liked by 1 person

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