[Note: The Book of Revelation makes it abundantly clear that Babylon the great is a literal city (c/p. Rev. 14:8; Rev. 16:19; Rev. 18:2; Rev. 18:4, Rev. 18:10, Rev. 18:16). As the text below likewise makes clear, this literal city has not only become the world's great commercial center, but is also the world's great shipping port city assessable to all the nations of the earth—which leaves out Jerusalem, which is an inland city and not a port city...and hardily a place of opulence. In Isaiah 13:19-20 God pronounces a curse on the historical city of Babylon: that its glory [and terraced gardens] was to be overthrown as Sodom and Gomorrah; and that it was never to be inhabited again. As a second witness, the Lord repeats this curse on historical Babylon in Jeremiah 50:39-40. Saddam Hussein, who saw himself as a modern-day reincarnation of King Nebuchadnezzar, is arguably the only man who could conceivably have rebuilt historical Babylon on its original site in Iraq; but he is now dead.
Babylon the great is fallen
To further complicate this: in the 5th Chapter of Zechariah, Zechariah prophesies that the "woman of wickedness" would yet build it a house in the land of Shinar...which is, again the land of Babylon: modern Iraq. But, what is clear is that Rev. 17:9 speaks of a spiritual mystery-Babylonian kingdom that has existed throughout seven historical "mountain" kingdoms [which had flesh-and-blood kings housed in literal cities]; and in Rev. 18:1-4 God speaks of a literal and immensely opulent city that will infect all nations and kings of the earth, which he warns His people in Rev. 18:4 to come out: of before He destroys it in one hour. There is presently on the earth no city that could compel all the kings and merchants of the earth to do business with it; and at the same time corrupt the comers with wickedness, and whose kings and merchants will weep and mourn at her destruction. I strongly suggest that there is one under construction across the gulf from the land of Shinar, which by far and away will become (at least physically) the finest city on the earth, bar none, and one who I also strongly suggest that Satan is constructing for his man—the Antichrist. This city is Dubai: the capital of the United Arab Emiratis. See Dubai and Dubai Projects for a glimpse at its magnificence. And, after viewing the construction underway in Dubai (and what is yet to be built), the text of Chapter 18 will literally come alive with a far greater revelation of the end times as they unfold. See also: Two Babylons/One City.]
Rev. 18:1 And after these things [after John is shown the judgment of the great whore-city, Mystery Babylon the great (Chapter 17)] I saw another angel
 come down from heaven,
 having great power; and
 the earth was lightened with his glory [c/p. Luke 2:9].
 with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great
[a.] is fallen, is fallen, and
[b.] is become the habitation of devils [Satan’s throne (seat)], and
[c.] [is become] the hold of every foul spirit, and
[d.] [is become] a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.
 all nations have
[a.] drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and
 the kings of the earth have
[a.] committed fornication with her, and
 the merchants of the earth are
[a.] waxed rich
[11.] through the abundance of her delicacies.
18:4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying,
 Come out of her, my people [I believe at this point the Church is in heaven, so the primary reference is to Israel and any Christians saved after the Rapture],
[a.] that ye be not partakers
[11.] of her sins, and
[b.] that ye receive not
[11.] of her plagues [when the cup of sin is full, it spills over into judgment].
[c.] her sins have
[11.] reached unto heaven, and
[d.] God hath
[11.] remembered her iniquities.
18:6  Reward her
[a.] even as she rewarded you, and
 double unto her double
[a.] according to her works:
 in the cup which she hath filled
[a.] fill to her double.
18:7  How much she hath glorified herself, and
 [how much she hath] lived deliciously,
[a.] so much torment and sorrow give her:
for she saith in her heart, I
[11.] sit a queen, and
[12.] am no widow, and
[13.] shall see no sorrow.
18:8 Therefore shall her plagues come
[a.] in one day,
[11.] death, and
[12.] mourning, and
[13.] famine [there are survivors]; and
[14.] she shall be utterly burned with fire [only nuclear energy or something that God only knows could utterly burn a city constructed with concrete and steel (See: The Revelation of Babylon the Great: That Great City (Dubai); Dubai and Dubai Projects):
[aa.] for strong [is] the Lord God who judgeth her.
 This chapter is a prophetic utterance, which is clearly shown by verse 4, and by use of the future tense throughout.
© 1997-2009 Walter J. Taylor; Walter James Taylor
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