Babylon the Great: Insight into Mystery Babylon

Babylon the Great (or Mystery Babylon) is an end time topic that many like to talk about. Those of you who are new to Bible prophecy may wonder what Mystery Babylon is and what is so mysterious about it.

In this article, we will look at three important aspects of Mystery Babylon:

  • The role Mystery Babylon will play during the end times
  • The “mystery” of Mystery Babylon.
  • The downfall of Mystery Babylon.

The End Time Role of Mystery Babylon

Introducing Mystery Babylon

Revelation 17:1 introduces us to a harlot (later identified as Babylon the Great in Revelation 17:5) who sits on many waters:

“And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:” (Revelation 17:1)

Revelation 17:15 suggests that the harlot rules over every group on Earth as it sits over: “peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues”:

“And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues.” (Revelation 17:15)

Revelation 17:18 gives us more insight about the harlot’s position in the world. The verse tells us that the harlot is a “great city”, which rules over the kings of the earth:

“And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.” (Revelation 17:18)

We can conclude from these details that Mystery Babylon will be a very important location in the world during the end times. However, you may be curious about how Mystery Babylon uses her power to influence the nations of the earth. We will look at that next.

Mystery Babylon & the Beast

Revelation 17:3 tells us that the harlot sits on a beast (representing the Antichrist). Revelation 17:7 tells us that the beast carries the harlot:

“So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.” (Revelation 17:3)

And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.” (Revelation 17:7)

This indicates there’s some degree of accord between them. The accord suggests that the harlot may work on behalf of the beast and that the beast may help to sustain the harlot’s power.

The harlot most likely will tempt people to worship the beast and to encourage people to persecute the beast’s (Antichrist’s) enemies. For instance, Revelation 17:6 tells us that the harlot will be drunk with the “blood of the saints” and “with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus”:

“And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.” (Revelation 17:6)

This verse suggests that the harlot is at least willing to go along with the beast’s desire to kill his enemies.

Mystery Babylon Corrupts the World

Revelation 17:2 and Revelation 18:3 tell us that the harlot will commit “fornication” with the kings of the earth:

“With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.” (Revelation 17:2)

“For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.” (Revelation 18:3)

Meanwhile, Revelation 17:2, Revelation 14:8, and Revelation 18:3 tell us that the people of the earth will be drunk from drinking the wine of harlot’s “fornication”:

“With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.” (Revelation 17:2)

“And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.” (Revelation 14:8)

“For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.” (Revelation 18:3)

The detail that the kings of the earth will commit “fornication” with the harlot while the people of the earth will drink from the wine of the harlot’s “fornication” suggests that the two groups may interact with the harlot differently

The Kings of the Earth

The kings of the earth will work with the harlot/beast. The harlot will reward them well for their obedience. Revelation 18:9 suggests that the kings of the earth will greatly benefit for following the harlot/beast:

And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail her, and lament for her, when they shall see the smoke of her burning,” (Revelation 18:9)

The People of Earth

The people of the earth may follow the harlot/beast because she tells them it is in their best interest to be obedient. Revelation 18:23 suggests that the harlot will deceive them:

“And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.” (Revelation 18:23)

The “fornication” between the harlot and the kings of the earth may play a role in compelling the people of the earth to follow the harlot/the beast:

  • The kings of the earth (who benefit from following the harlot) may instruct their subjects to worship the beast and to persecute the beast’s enemies.

The “Mystery” of Babylon the Great

The reason many refer to Babylon the Great as “Mystery Babylon” is that the word “mystery” appears in its title in Revelation 17:5:

“And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” (Revelation 17:5)

I will explain what the significance of the word “mystery” is in this section.

“Mystery” in Revelation 17:5

The Greek word for “mystery” in Revelation 17:5 is “mustērion”.

  • Easton’s Bible Dictionary defines a “mystery” as “a truth undiscoverable except by revelation, long hid, now made manifest”.[1]
  • Meanwhile, Thayer’s Greek Definitions provides several definitions for the word mystery/mustērion, including this definition:
  • 1c1b) a hidden purpose or counsel of God: the secret counsels which govern God in dealing with the righteous, which are hidden from ungodly and wicked men but plain to the godly.[2]

    I shared these definitions because they are not what we often think of when we think of the word “mystery”. We often think of a mystery as an enigma that is difficult to solve (i.e. a crime mystery).

    However, the definitions above seem to fit how the word is used in several New Testament passages. For example, Christ told His disciples they have would be able to understand the mysteries of the kingdom of God. He added that others would not understand even though they hear the same words:

    “(9) And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be? (10) And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.” (Luke 8:9-10)

    1 Corinthians 2:7-10 also conveys the idea that mysteries are made known to certain people:

    “(7) But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: (8) Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. (9) But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. (10) But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” (1 Corinthians 2:7-10)

    The idea that mysteries are truths revealed to certain people is also found in Romans 16:25-27 and Colossians 1:25-28.

    Also consider Revelation 1:20. The word “mystery” appears in relation to the seven stars and seven candlesticks in the first half of the verse. In the second half of the verse, Christ explains their meaning:

    The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.” (Revelation 1:20)

    Thus, we can view a “mystery” as a hidden truth that’s revealed to those receptive to God’s words.

    Also consider the harlot is not called “Mystery Babylon the Great” anywhere else in the Book of Revelation. In contrast, the terms Babylon the Great, great Babylon, Babylon, and Babylon the great city appear.

    • This fact suggests that the word “mystery” is unlikely a key part of the harlot’s name (i.e. a way to signal that Babylon’s location is symbolic).

    The Way to Tell a Place Is Symbolic

    The way to signify that a place is symbolic in the Book of Revelation is shown in verse 11:8. The word “spiritually” (Greek: pneumatikōs) alerts readers that Sodom and Egypt represent a great city where the Lord was crucified (Jerusalem):

    “And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.” (Revelation 11:8)

    Recall that the Greek word for “mystery” in Revelation 17:5 is mustērion, so it is not the word used in Revelation to signify that a place is symbolic. Therefore, the word “mystery” is not a reason to dismiss Babylon, Iraq as a candidate to be Babylon the Great.

    Given all of this, the word “mystery” is not a key part of the harlot’s name. Instead, it is a word that tells us that information about the harlot is coming.

    What is the “Mystery” of Babylon the Great?

    The angel who was with John told him he would reveal the mystery of the woman, Babylon the Great (or Mystery Babylon):

    “And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.” (Revelation 17:7)

    Revelation 17:8-14 describes the mystery of the beast that rides the harlot. Meanwhile, Revelation 17:15-18 explains the mystery aspect of Babylon the Great:

    “(15) And he saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues. (16) And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. (17) For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled. (18) And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.” (Revelation 17:15-18)

    The “mystery” is no longer a mystery after the angel’s words. The woman represents a great city that has a key place among nations, multitudes, peoples, and tongues & rules over the kings of the earth.

    The Downfall of Babylon the Great

    Some believe that Babylon the Great will face two judgments during the end times. However, the Bible shows that Babylon the Great will only face one end time judgment. We will look at the evidence in this section.

    The Alliance of the Antichrist & the Ten Kings

    One major reason why Babylon the Great will face only one judgment is the nature of the alliance between the Antichrist (the beast) and the ten kings that will work with him.

    Revelation 17:16-17 tells us that the ten kings will agree to surrender their power to the beast “until the words of God shall be fulfilled”. This applies to the fulfillment of the ten king’s move to desolate Babylon the Great and destroy her with fire:

    “(16) And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. (17) For God hath put in their hearts to fulfil his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.” (Revelation 17:16-17)

    The demise of Babylon the Great will fulfill God’s words. This implies that the ten kings may no longer be willing to lend their power to the beast when this happens. The alliance between the Antichrist and the ten kings may fracture at that time.

    Consequently, a move to attack Babylon the Great could result in Antichrist’s control over the earth to cease. He may no longer have the support of the ten kings who surrender their power to him.

    However, Revelation 13:5 and Daniel 7:25 suggest that the Antichrist’s empire will dominate the world for 42 months; basically, until the end of the tribulation.

    Therefore, an attack on Babylon the Great cannot take place until the end of tribulation at the earliest. The reason is that the Antichrist needs his alliance to remain intact to maintain control of Earth during the 42 months his global empire is appointed.

    Babylon & the Seventh Vial Judgment

    Jeremiah 50 and Jeremiah 51 describe only one attack on Babylon after the pouring of the seventh vial or (seventh bowl) judgment. We can see this by comparing the passages below.

    • Jeremiah 50 and Jeremiah 51, including verse 51:9, can be linked together through common details.
    • The attack on Babylon described in Jeremiah 51 can be linked to Revelation 18 through a common detail shared by Revelation 18:5 and Jeremiah 51:9: the sins of Babylon reach unto heaven.
    • Revelation 18:4-5 (verse 4 relates to verse 5 with the word “for” [gar]) can be linked to the seventh bowl judgment. Verse 18:5 shares a common detail with Revelation 16:19 about how God will remember Babylon the Great’s iniquities.

    Figure 1 shows the relationship between the verses I’ve just referred to.


    Figure 1: Babylon Faces Only One Attack

    • Reached to Heaven
    • Remembrance before God
    • Leave Babylon
    • Repay Babylon

    Revelation 16:17-19: (17) And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done. (18) And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great. (19) And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.

    Revelation 18:4-6: (4) And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. (5) For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities. (6) Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she hath filled fill to her double.

    Jeremiah 50:15-16: (15) Shout against her round about: she hath given her hand: her foundations are fallen, her walls are thrown down: for it is the vengeance of the LORD: take vengeance upon her; as she hath done, do unto her. (16) Cut off the sower from Babylon, and him that handleth the sickle in the time of harvest: for fear of the oppressing sword they shall turn every one to his people, and they shall flee every one to his own land.

    Jeremiah 51:9 We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country: for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies.


    Other details point to only one attack on Babylon around the pouring of the seventh bowl judgment. I will discuss these details next.

    People Flee Just Before God’s Vengeance

    One of the most striking aspects of the attack on Babylon is the call for God’s people to flee from Babylon. Several prophets and Revelation cover the flight of people from Babylon.[3]

    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 unto her a recompence.” (Jeremiah 51:6)

    Go ye forth of Babylon, flee ye from the Chaldeans, with a voice of singing declare ye, tell this, utter it even to the end of the earth; say ye, The LORD hath redeemed his servant Jacob.” (Isaiah 48:20)

    “(6) Ho, ho, come forth, and flee from the land of the north, saith the LORD: for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heaven, saith the LORD. (7) Deliver thyself, O Zion, that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon. (8) For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye.” (Zechariah 2:6-8)

    “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.” (Revelation 18.4)

    The reason God’s tells His people to flee from Babylon is that its demise is coming. Isaiah and the Jeremiah describe the attack on Babylon as an act of God’s vengeance or fierce anger.[4]

    “(2) Take the millstones, and grind meal: uncover thy locks, make bare the leg, uncover the thigh, pass over the rivers. (3) Thy nakedness shall be uncovered, yea, thy shame shall be seen: I will take vengeance, and I will not meet thee as a man.” (Isaiah 47:2-3)

    “(5) For Israel hath not been forsaken, nor Judah of his God, of the LORD of hosts; though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel. (6) 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 unto her a recompence.” (Jeremiah 51:5-6)

    “My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and deliver ye every man his soul from the fierce anger of the LORD.” (Jeremiah 51:45)

    This suggests that the destruction of Babylon relates to the pouring of the seventh bowl judgment since the seventh bowl judgment will bring God’s wrath on Babylon.

    Attackers Deliver God’s Wrath to Babylon the Great

    The wrath of God will be given to Babylon the Great by a coalition of forces that will invade her under the command of the ten kings (Revelation 17:16). This coalition will devastate her to the point she becomes like Sodom and Gomorrah.

    The verses in Figure 2 describe how the attackers will overwhelm Babylon the Great.[5]


    Figure 2: Attackers Deliver God’s Wrath to Babylon

    • Sodom & Gomorrah
    • Weaponry
    • Desolated
    • The Attackers

    Jeremiah 50:9-10, 13-14: (9) For, lo, I will raise and cause to come up against Babylon an assembly of great nations from the north country: and they shall set themselves in array against her; from thence she shall be taken: their arrows shall be as of a mighty expert man; none shall return in vain. (10) And Chaldea shall be a spoil: all that spoil her shall be satisfied, saith the LORD. […] (13) Because of the wrath of the LORD it shall not be inhabited, but it shall be wholly desolate: every one that goeth by Babylon shall be astonished, and hiss at all her plagues. (14) Put yourselves in array against Babylon round aboutall ye that bend the bow, shoot at her, spare no arrows: for she hath sinned against the LORD.

    Isaiah 13:17-22: (17) Behold, I will stir up the Medes against them, which shall not regard silver; and as for gold, they shall not delight in it. (18) Their bows also shall dash the young men to pieces; and they shall have no pity on the fruit of the womb; their eye shall not spare children. (19) And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees’ excellency, shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah. (20) It shall never be inhabited, neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation: neither shall the Arabian pitch tent there; neither shall the shepherds make their fold there. (21) But wild beasts of the desert shall lie there; and their houses shall be full of doleful creatures; and owls shall dwell there, and satyrs shall dance there. (22) And the wild beasts of the islands shall cry in their desolate houses, and dragons in their pleasant palaces: and her time is near to come, and her days shall not be prolonged.

    Jeremiah 50:40-43: (40) As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighbour cities thereof, saith the LORD; so shall no man abide there, neither shall any son of man dwell therein. (41) Behold, a people shall come from the north, and a great nation, and many kings shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth. (42) They shall hold the bow and the lance: they are cruel, and will not shew mercy: their voice shall roar like the sea, and they shall ride upon horses, every one put in array, like a man to the battle, against thee, O daughter of Babylon. (43) The king of Babylon hath heard the report of them, and his hands waxed feeble: anguish took hold of him, and pangs as of a woman in travail.


    The nations that will invade Babylon the Great will also plunder her according to:[6]

    • Jeremiah 50:26-27
    • Habakkuk 2:6-8
    • Revelation 17:16

    The Lord Pleads for the Cause of Zion

    We can also see that the attack on Babylon the Great will come in the latter part of the end times by noting that Babylon’s demise will come when the Lord will plead for the cause of Zion:[7]

    “(35) The violence done to me and to my flesh be upon Babylon, shall the inhabitant of Zion say; and my blood upon the inhabitants of Chaldea, shall Jerusalem say. (36) Therefore thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will plead thy cause, and take vengeance for thee; and I will dry up her sea, and make her springs dry. (37) And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwellingplace for dragons, an astonishment, and an hissing, without an inhabitant.” (Jeremiah 51:35-37)

    Isaiah 34 suggests this period (the “year of recompences for the controversy of Zion”) is part of the “day of vengeance” portion of the Day of the Lord. Isaiah 13 also suggests that the demise of Babylon will take place during the Day of the Lord:

    For it is the day of the LORD’S vengeance, and the year of recompences for the controversy of Zion.” (Isaiah 34:8)

    “(1) The burden of Babylon, which Isaiah the son of Amoz did see. […] (6) Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. […] (9) Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.” (Isaiah 13:1, 6, 9)

    Moreover, Jeremiah 50 suggests that the attack on Babylon the Great will take place when the process to redeem the people of Israel will be underway during the Day of the Lord.

    “(4) In those days, and in that time, saith the LORD, the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping: they shall go, and seek the LORD their God. (5) They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces thitherward, saying, Come, and let us join ourselves to the LORD in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten…(20) In those days, and in that time, saith the LORD, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve.” (Jeremiah 50:4-5, 20)

    The placing of the attack on Babylon the Great in the latter part of the end times is key since it greatly reduces the chances of there being two attacks on Babylon the Great. There’s no time for the two attacks to take place.

    Preserving the Element of Surprise in One Attack

    Revelation 18:1-2 includes the statement “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen”. This statement makes some think that Babylon will decline in power before her demise:

    “(1) And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. (2) And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.” (Revelation 18:1-2)

    However, the fact that Babylon the Great has the arrogant attitude that it shall not sorrow, will never be a widow, and shall not lose children (Jeremiah 50:29-30, Revelation 18:7, and Isaiah 47:8) in an end time context indicates she has not been attacked before her demise (see Figure 3).

    Babylon the Great would not have this arrogant attitude before her demise if Revelation 18:1-2 relates to a past decline in power. She would already suffer a loss of children and would have been humbled:


    Figure 3: Babylon Is Arrogant Before Her Destruction

    • The Lord Judges
    • Arrogance
    • Plagues in One Day
    • Depopulated

    Jeremiah 50:29-31: (29) Call together the archers against Babylon: all ye that bend the bow, camp against it round about; let none thereof escape: recompense her according to her work; according to all that she hath done, do unto her: for she hath been proud against the LORD, against the Holy One of Israel. (30) Therefore shall her young men fall in the streets, and all her men of war shall be cut off in that day, saith the LORD. (31) Behold, I am against thee, O thou most proud, saith the Lord GOD of hosts: for thy day is come, the time that I will visit thee.

    Isaiah 47:7-10: (7) And thou saidst, I shall be a lady for ever: so that thou didst not lay these things to thy heart, neither didst remember the latter end of it. (8) Therefore hear now this, thou that art given to pleasures, that dwellest carelessly, that sayest in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me; I shall not sit as a widow, neither shall I know the loss of children: (9) But these two things shall come to thee in a moment in one day, the loss of children, and widowhood: they shall come upon thee in their perfection for the multitude of thy sorceries, and for the great abundance of thine enchantments. (10) For thou hast trusted in thy wickedness: thou hast said, None seeth me. Thy wisdom and thy knowledge, it hath perverted thee; and thou hast said in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me.

    Revelation 18:7-8: (7) How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. (8) Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.


    Jeremiah, Isaiah, and Revelation each describe the downfall of Babylon the Great as a sudden event that surprises the world, including the Antichrist (the end time king of Babylon).

    The passages below convey the shocking suddenness of Babylon the Great’s demise.[8]

    “(9) But these two things shall come to thee in a moment in one day, the loss of children, and widowhood: they shall come upon thee in their perfection for the multitude of thy sorceries, and for the great abundance of thine enchantments. (10) For thou hast trusted in thy wickedness: thou hast said, None seeth me. Thy wisdom and thy knowledge, it hath perverted thee; and thou hast said in thine heart, I am, and none else beside me. (11) Therefore shall evil come upon thee; thou shalt not know from whence it riseth: and mischief shall fall upon thee; thou shalt not be able to put it off: and desolation shall come upon thee suddenly, which thou shalt not know.” (Isaiah 47:9-11)

    “(23) How is the hammer of the whole earth cut asunder and broken! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations! (24) I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware: thou art found, and also caught, because thou hast striven against the LORD. (25) The LORD hath opened his armoury, and hath brought forth the weapons of his indignation: for this is the work of the Lord GOD of hosts in the land of the Chaldeans.” (Jeremiah 50:23-25)

    “(7) How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously, so much torment and sorrow give her: for she saith in her heart, I sit a queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow. (8) Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her…(10) Standing afar off for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! for in one hour is thy judgment come.” (Revelation 18:7-8, 10)

    The sudden destruction of Babylon the Great suggests that only one attack will take place instead of two attacks. The element of surprise would not exist if she is subject to two attacks.

    Babylon’s Fall Results in Its Ruin

    Babylon the Great’s end time judgment results in her ruin. We can see in Figure 4 that the references to Babylon the Great’s downfall in Revelation 18:2 and in Revelation 14:8 relate to the time when God’s people will flee from the imminent pouring of God’s wrath on her.

    Revelation 18:2-3, Jeremiah 51:6-9, and Revelation 14:8 each suggests that a key reason why Babylon will fall is that she made the nations of the earth drunk with her wine.

    • This common detail suggests that each passage is talking about the same event.
    • The relationship between these passages is key as Jeremiah 51:6-9 becomes a passage that gives context to the event described by the other passages.
    • Jeremiah 51:6 mentions that the Lord’s people will flee from Babylon before God’s vengeance arrives in Babylon while verses 8-9 suggests that Babylon’s fall is swift and brutal.

    Figure 4: Babylon’s Fall Results in Its Ruin

    • Made the Nations Drunk with Her Wine
    • Babylon Is Fallen

    Revelation 18:2-3: (2) And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. (3) For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.

    Jeremiah 51:6-9: (6) 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 unto her a recompence. (7) Babylon hath 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. (8) Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: howl for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed. (9) We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country: for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies.

    Revelation 14:8: And there followed another angel, saying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great city, because she made all nations drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.


    Unsurprisingly, Isaiah 21 links the fall of Babylon the Great to the attack of the nations who will plunder Babylon the Great and destroy her:

    “(1) The burden of the desert of the sea. As whirlwinds in the south pass through; so it cometh from the desert, from a terrible land. (2) A grievous vision is declared unto me; the treacherous dealer dealeth treacherously, and the spoiler spoileth. Go up, O Elam: besiege, O Media; all the sighing thereof have I made to cease. (3) Therefore are my loins filled with pain: pangs have taken hold upon me, as the pangs of a woman that travaileth: I was bowed down at the hearing of it; I was dismayed at the seeing of it…(9) And, behold, here cometh a chariot of men, with a couple of horsemen. And he answered and said, Babylon is fallen, is fallen; and all the graven images of her gods he hath broken unto the ground. (10) O my threshing, and the corn of my floor: that which I have heard of the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, have I declared unto you.” (Isaiah 21:1-3, 9-10)

    Final Thoughts

    Babylon the Great will be the most powerful city of the end times. The Antichrist will help Babylon the Great gain this position and she will help advance his agenda.

    Babylon the Great will be held responsible for deceiving the world and for the killing of the saints during the end times. Her downfall will come after the pouring of the seventh bowl judgment when God will judge her.

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    Note

    1. Easton, M.G. “Mystery”. Easton’s Bible Dictionary. Thomas Nelson: 1897.
    2. G3466 Thayer’s Greek Definitions.
    3. Jeremiah 50:8 and Jeremiah 51:45 also call the people of Israel to flee from Babylon.
    4. Jeremiah 50:13-15, 24-25, 28 and Isaiah 13:3-6 also link the destruction of Babylon the Great to an act of God’s vengeance.
    5. Isaiah 47:9-11 and Jeremiah 50:26, 51:1-4, 25-26, 29, 36-39, 43-45 also describe how the attackers will overwhelm Babylon the Great.
    6. Jeremiah 50:10, 37, 51:48, 53, 55-56 also indicate that the invading nations will plunder Babylon the Great.
    7. Jeremiah 50:33-34, 51:24 also link the destruction of Babylon to the time when the Lord will plead for the cause of Zion.
    8. Jeremiah 50:40-43, 46, 51:8, 12, 41 also captures the suddenness of Babylon the Great’s destruction.
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    Wayne Croley
    Wayne Croley

    Hi! I’ve studied and written about Bible prophecy since I was a teenager. My goal is to make Bible prophecy easy for you to understand while avoiding the sensationalism seen elsewhere. I am the author of Prophecy Proof Insights on the End Times, a comprehensive book about the end times. I hold an M.B.A. and degrees in Managerial Economics and Political Science.