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Notes for

The Revelation

Chapter Eighteen

1. This angel represents the last group of God's people working here on earth just before the second coming. It is said to have come down from heaven because they have at last been imbued with the fullness of heaven's attitude of selflessness.

They carry with them the everlasting gospel as we saw in chapter 14. Their mission is to give the last warning of the offer of mercy, and their territory is the whole world. While the church is in the world they can do this, but the time is coming when they will not be able to for they will be in the wilderness.

Isaiah 21:11-12 A plea to understand what is going on

The burden of Dumah [a child of Ishmael, the other son of Abraham]. He calls to me out of Seir [or Esau, a name which covers all the rejecters], Watchman, what of the night? Watchman, what of the night? [What’s happening?] The watchman [that's us] said, The morning comes, and also the night [it is near the end]: if you will inquire, inquire you: return, come [back to God].

Just before this set of verses there is mention that the call has gone out telling of the fall of Babylon, and this is in response to that information. The warning goes as the fall commences when there is yet time for repentance. There is no point in a warning that comes after the event.

Isaiah 21:9

And, behold, here comes a chariot of men, with a couple of horsemen. And he answered and said, Babylon is fallen, is fallen; and all the graven [or carved] images of her gods He has broken to the ground.

Isaiah 60:1-5 The glory is understanding the character of God

Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the LORD shall arise upon you, and His glory shall be seen upon you.

There will be a great ingathering

And [some of] the Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. Lift up your eyes round about, and see: all they gather themselves together, they come to you: your sons shall come from far, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side. Then you shall see, and flow together, and your heart shall fear, and be enlarged; because the abundance of the sea shall be converted to you, the forces of the Gentiles shall come to you.

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2. This is virtually a repeat of Revelation 14:8, but this time the words "the great" are added, covering all the professed Christian denominations, with the additional mention of the corruptions which have entered since the first warning.

A terrible condition of the entire religious world is here described. With every rejection of truth the minds of the people in the churches will become darker, their hearts more stubborn, until they are entrenched in an infidel-like hardihood such as the Pharaoh of Egypt in Moses' time. In defiance of the warnings which God has given, they will continue to trample upon one of the Ten Commandments, until they are led to persecute those who hold it sacred. Christ will be as nothing in the contempt placed upon His word and His people by those who claim to be His followers. As the teachings of spiritualism are accepted by the churches, the restraint imposed upon the carnal heart is removed, and the profession of religion will become a cloak to conceal the basest iniquity. A belief in spiritual manifestations will open the door to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils, and thus the influence of evil angels will be felt in the churches.

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3. Here we are being told that "all the world wondered after the beast". The politicians and the global business men will back this new system of religious co-operation because of the gain they make out of it.

The "wine" mentioned refers to the false doctrines taught by these churches. They have the power to captivate the senses.

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4. Jeremiah 51:6-8

Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul: be not cut off in her iniquity; for this is the time of the LORD'S vengeance; He will render to her a recompense. Babylon has been a golden cup in the LORD'S hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad. Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: howl for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed.

It is the voice of Jesus calling His followers in the fallen churches to leave them and stand for the truth.

The call to the wedding feast is to be given in the highways. Matthew 22:9-10. It must be given to those who claim to be in the highways of Christian experience - to the members of the different churches. "He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches." Revelation 2:7. In these churches there are true worshipers and there are false worshippers. A work must be done for those who have fallen from their first love, who have lost their first zeal and interest in spiritual things. We must bring the warning before professed Christians who are transgressors of the law of God. To them the message must be given.

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5. Zephaniah 2:15 This has happened before

This is the rejoicing city that dwelt carelessly [Nineveh of Assyria], that said in her heart, I am, and there is none beside me: how is she become a desolation, a place for beasts to lie down in! every one that passes by her shall hiss [whistle], and wag his hand.

Self exaltation is the mark of Babylon. The Head of Christianity describes Himself as "meek and lowly". Matthew 11:29.

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6. The "one day" here is literal time because Jesus is in command of the situation and is on His way here for the second advent. The plagues are the final three of the seven last plagues. They commence with the drying up of the river Euphrates (the horns of Revelation ch. 17 hating the whore and burning her) which is the withdrawing of the support of the people, and end with the hail falling on the fighting people. All this will occur in one twenty-four hour period.

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7. The political people who have permitted themselves to be deceived by Great Babylon will be very upset at the sudden fall from popularity and will try to distance themselves. As written in Daniel, "he [Satan's king] has come to his end and none shall help him". The iron and the clay cannot stay together.

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8. A little further on (verse 23) these merchants are described as the "great men of the earth". The global business men of the time will be horrified, for this fall comes at the height of Babylon's pinnacle, when all seemed to be settled except for the cry from the east and the north. But they are not just in it for the profit, they also wanted a share in the power over men and women that their position of partnership with Babylon gave them.

"thyine wood" was a type of cypress said to be worth its weight in gold to the ancient/s.

Not only did these "merchants" deal in all the worldly items, but also in "the souls of men", for there is a conspiracy between false religionists and the business world to control the people body and soul. In this they are being helped by the "sailors", those who "carry" the goods around the world. These are the sorcerers and spiritualists who are even now growing in numbers and popularity among professed Christians as well as in the world.

None of this just happening - it is all part of the confederacy that the Spirit told us about in Daniel chapter two - the feet and toes of the statue. It is all being engineered by the great revolutionary, Satan, behind the scenes.

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9. It is not that heavenly creatures are glad to see the destruction of Babylon, but that they are happy that the persecution which they have witnessed for 6,000 years is now over.

The violence which destroys Great Babylon comes from within. It is written:-

Ezekiel 28:18-19

You have defiled your sanctuaries by the multitude of your iniquities, by the iniquity of your traffic; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of you, it shall devour you, and I will bring you to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold you. All they that know you among the people shall be astonished at you: you shall be a terror [an amazement to them], and never shall you be any more.

Jeremiah 51:60-64

So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written against Babylon. And Jeremiah said to Seraiah [his agent], When you come to Babylon, and shall see, and shall read all these words; then shall you say,

O LORD, You have spoken against this place, to cut it off, that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever.

And it shall be, when you have made an end of reading this book, that you shall bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of Euphrates: and you shall say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary.

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10. This system is the cause of all the problems of the world. It contains the aspect of selfishness, not created in man by God, but perverted by sin from the God-given attribute of self-preservation. By this it has justified the killing of its opponents.

Luke 11:49-51 Jesus used this principle when He said..

Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute: that the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from the foundation of the world, may be required of this generation; from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zacharias, which perished between the altar and the temple. Verily I say to you, It shall be required of this generation.

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