IS AMERICA PART OF END TIMES PROPHECY?
THAT'S A QUESTION I GET OFTEN FROM VIEWERS OF THE LAST HOUR, VISITORS TO OUR WEB SITE OR BIBLE BELIEVERS AT THE CHURCHES I VISIT TO PREACH ON THE SECOND COMING. MOST OF THESE GOOD FOLKS ARE CONVINCED THAT THE U.S.A. IS NOWHERE MENTIONED IN THE PROPHETIC BOOKS AND SO THEY CONCLUDE THAT AMERICA IS ON A DOWNWARD SPIRAL THAT WILL CULMINATE IN THE NATION'S DIMINISHED STATUS TO A THIRD-RATE POWER, SUBSERVIENT TO THE EUROPEAN UNION WHO IN THEIR SCENARIO WILL ACT AS THE KEY FORCE FROM WHOM WILL SPRING THE ANTI-CHRIST AND THE HORRENDOUS EVENTS OF THE GREAT TRIBULATION.
NOW I DON'T MEAN TO BE ORNERY, BUT I MUST DISAGREE WITH THE SCENARIO. I AM STRONGLY CONVINCED THAT THE USA DOES APPEAR IN PROPHESY, IF NOT EXPLICITLY THAN CERTAINLY INFERRED. FOR EXAMPLE, IN THE EZEKIEL 38 PORTIONS DESCRIBING A COMING INVASION OF ISRAEL (SEE ARTICLE TITLED "THE COMING MIDEAST WAR"), WHEN GOD SAYS THAT RUSSIA WILL JOIN A COALITION OF MUSLIM NATIONS THAT LAUNCHES AN ATTACK AGAINST ISRAEL, HE ALSO TELLS US THAT OTHER NATIONS WILL VERBALLY PROTEST THIS INVASION.
THESE NATIONS ARE NAMED IN THOSE SCRIPTURES AS "SHEBA, DEDAN, THE MERCHANTS OF TARSHISH AND ALL THE YOUNG LIONS THEREOF." NOW THESE WERE ALL GREAT NATIONS OF COMMERCE AND TRADE IN BIBLICAL TIMES. TARSHISH, THE THIRD GREAT MERCANTILE POWER NAMED THERE, WAS A GENERIC TERM FOR THE TRADING POWERS LOCATED SOMEWHERE IN EUROPE.
FOR MANY HUNDREDS OF YEARS, THE GREAT TRADING COUNTRIES WERE FRANCE, SPAIN AND GREAT BRITAIN, AND WHAT IS NOW THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA WERE ORIGINALLY ESTABLISHED AS COLONIES OF THE BRITISH AND FRENCH EMPIRES. SO I BELIEVE AMERICA, ALONG WITH AUSTRALIA AND CANADA, ALL FIT THE DESCRIPTION OF "YOUNG LIONS OF TARSHISH." AND TODAY, WITHOUT ARGUMENT, AMERICA IS THE MOST POWERFUL TRADING NATION IN THE WORLD.
GETTING BACK TO THE EZEKIEL PROPHESY, THESE TRADING NATIONS ARE DESCRIBES AS QUESTIONING THE RUSSIAN-BACKED INVASION BY ASKING, "HAVE YOU COME TO TAKE A SPOIL.. HAVE YOU GATHERED THESE NATIONS TOGETHER TO CARRY AWAY SILVER AND GOLD, TO TAKE A GREAT SPOIL?" THIS SOUNDS VERY MUCH LIKE A TYPICAL UNITED NATIONS DEBATE, WHERE AMERICA AND THE EUROPEANS LAY BACK AND TAKE NO MILITARY ACTION AGAINST THE INVASION OF ISRAEL. INSTEAD, THEY'LL JUST MAKE A LOT OF USELESS NOISE IN THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY.
THERE ARE ALSO SOME OTHER PLACES IN THE BIBLE WHERE I BELIEVE AMERICA IS INVOLVED WITH END-TIME PROPHESY. THESE HAVE TO DO WITH BIBLICAL REFERENCES TO WHAT IS CALLED "BABYLON." THE BIBLE SPEAKS OF THREE NATIONS OR POWERS THAT IS CALLED "BABYLON."
THE FIRST APPEARS IN GENESIS 11, WHERE WE SEE HISTORICAL BABYLON DESCRIBED. THAT WAS THE GREAT NATION-STATE RULED BY NEBUCHADNAZZAR DURING ITS GOLDEN AGE, ONE OF THE EARLY SUPERPOWERS RULING OVER MUCH OF THE CIVILIZED WORLD IN ITS TIME.
THEN IN THE LAST BOOK OF THE BIBLE, IN THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST, WE READ OF TWO MORE GREAT POWERS THAT ARE BOTH CALLED "BABYLON." THE FIRST OCCURS IN CHAPTER 17 WHERE ECCLESIASTICAL BABYLON APPEARS--AND THEN AGAIN IN CHAPTER 18 WHERE POLITICAL BABYLON IS DEPICTED.
BIBLICALLY, HISTORICAL BABYLON IS CHARACTERIZED BY A GREAT TOWER REACHING UP TO HEAVEN. ECCLESIASTICAL BABYLON IS SYMBOLIZED BY A MYTHICAL WOMAN RIDING A BEAST, AND POLITICAL BABYLON IS SYMBOLIZED BY A MIGHTY CITY, A CENTER OF TRADE, COMMERCE AND POWER.
HISTORICAL BABYLON'S UNIFYING ELEMENT WAS BASED IN HAVING A COMMON LANGUAGE, ECCLESIATICAL BABYLON'S VISION WAS OF A SINGLE FORM OF UNIFIED WORSHIP, AND POLITICAL BABYLON'S THRUST WAS TO CREATE A UNIFIED ONE-WORLDWIDE SOCIETY.
GOD DESTROYED THE TOWER OF THE HISTORICAL BABYLON, CONFOUNDED THEIR LANGUAGE AND SCATTERED THE PEOPLE. THEN IN REVELATION 17 WE READ HOW GOD WILL CAUSE THE ANTI-CHRIST TO HATE THE UNIFIED ECUMENICAL CHURCH. HE WILL PROCEED TO OUTLAW ALL RELIGION FOCUSED ON A SUPREME DEITY, DESTROY THE APOSTATE CHURCH WHICH HELPED HIM ACHIEVE POWER, AND THEN DECLARE HIMSELF TO BE GOD ON EARTH.
THE DESTINY OF POLITICAL BABYLON IS A SERIES OF TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS THAT GOD WILL POUR OUT UPON PLANET EARTH, CAUSING THE WORLD ECONOMY TO CRASH, AND FINALLY DESTROY THE "GREAT CITY BABYLON" IN A SINGLE DAY.
WE KNOW WHAT HAPPENED TO HISTORICAL BABYLON. IT JOINED THE OTHER FORMER IMPERIAL WORLD POWERS IN THE DUSTBIN OF HISTORY.
AS FOR ECCLESIASTICAL BABYLON, MANY PROPHETIC SCHOLARS BELIEVE THAT THIS RELIGIOUS BABYLON WILL BE SOME SORT OF EXTENTION TO THE PRESENT-DAY ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH. THERE IS MUCH MERIT TO THAT VIEW, SINCE THE POPE AND THE VATICAN ARE TODAY THE PRIMARY MOVING FORCE BEHIND THE ECUMENICAL MOVEMENT IN PROFESSING CHRISTIANITY (ACTUALLY “CURCHIANITY”), WHERE DENOMINATIONAL AND DOCTRINAL DIFFERENCES ARE BOTH SACRIFICED FOR THE SAKE OF A UNIFIED "ONE-RELIGION FITS ALL" FAITH.
IT COULD ALSO JUST AS WELL BE A BRAND NEW ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE BEYOND CATHOLICISM THAT WILL CONSTITUTE THE FINAL RELIGIOUS BABYLON, COMBINING THE WORLD COUNCIL OF CHURCHES, REFORM AND LIBERAL SYNOGOGUES, NON-FUNDAMENTAL MOSQUES, ASHRAMS AND THE ACCOMODATIONISTS OF ALL THE OTHER WORLD FAITHS.
POLITICAL BABYLON, HOWEVER, IS BIBLICALLY DESCRIBED IN MUCH GREATER DETAIL. JUST AS THE ANTI-CHRIST IS NOT NAMED BUT CAN BE IDENTIFIED BY HIS DESCRIPTION, SO POLITICAL BABYLON CAN PICTURED BY THE NUMEROUS PROPHESIES GIVEN TO DESCRIBE HER.
IS the USA the Babylon of rev.18?
The Bible refers to several kinds of “babylon”—A literal country named babylon, which today encompasses the lands occupied by the nations of iraq and iran. then there is a financial Babylon, a religious Babylon, and a political world power ALSO called “Babylon.”
The prophets of the old testament wrote often about god’s judgment coming down upon babylon at “the end of days.” for example, check out THE book of Isaiah, chapter 13: 21:1-10, and isaiah chapter 47; also see Jeremiah chapters 50 and 51. In the New Testament, as well, it deTAILS the terrible devastation god WILL pour out on “Babylon” at the time of the end in Revelation 18. IT SEEMS CLEAR THAT THESE DO NOT REFER TO THE GEOGRAPHICAL LANDS OF IRAQ AND IRAN, WHICH FAILS TO COME ANYWHERE CLOSE TO THE WEALTH, POWER AND WORLD INFLUENCE REQUIRED OF THESE VARIOUS “BABYLONS.”
SO the question then becomes—do these verses seem to describe america?
THE CHARACTERISTICS OF BABYLON
1) Babylon is an end-time nation
judged by god "in those days and in that time" and in the "day
of trouble." This refers to the
time of Jacob's trouble and the birth pangs leading to the coming of the
Messiah (Isaiah 13:8, 13, and 21:3; also Jeremiah 50:4, 20; 51:2, 43).
2) Babylon is an economically super-powerful nation (Jeremiah 50:37, 51:13; and Revelation 18:3, 19).
3) Babylon is populated by "mixed and mingled people" (Jeremiah 50:37).
4) geographically, Babylon is a land “that
dwells upon many waters” (Jeremiah 51:13).
5) Babylon is a country that has defeated mighty kingdoms through war (Jeremiah 50:23, 51:20-21).
6) Babylon is a mighty military power
7) Babylon has turned away from the God of Israel and rejoiced in opposing him and his chosen people israel (Jeremiah 50:11, 24, 29, 38).
8) babylon is the chief of trading nations in the world at the time of the end (revelation 18: 11-19).
9) Babylon is an arrogant nation, believing it will never experience the wrath of God for her evil ways (Isaiah 47:5-11; Revelation 18:7-8).
10) Babylon is attacked by nations from the north and destroyed by “extremely accurate arrows” (guided nuclear- missiles) (Jeremiah 50:9).
11) babylon will be destroyed by “fire in all her cities,” most likely caused by the rain of nuclear fire (Jeremiah 50:32; Revelation 18:8).
12) Babylon will be destroyed in a similar same way that god destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah (Isaiah 13:19; Jeremiah 50:40).
13) all The nations of the world will tremble from fear at the utter destruction of Babylon (Jeremiah 50:46; Revelation 18:9-10).
14) When Babylon is destroyed, the sins of Israel and the jewish people will be forgiven by their recognizing and accepting and repenting over their returning messiah (Jeremiah 50:20; zechariah 12:10-13:2; romans 11:26-27).
15) When Israel flees Babylon and returns to the land of Israel, they will enter into an ETERNAL (new) covenant that will stand forever, ushering in the millennium, the Messianic Age (Jeremiah 31:31-34; 50:4-5; Ezekiel 37:26-28).
considering the first nine characteristics of Babylon above, what other nation in the world today fits the pattern described? What other nation besides america is the richest, most tecnologically superior, the greatest mercantile nation which rules the seas and the airways, religiously rebellious even though it sends out the most christian missionaries (80% of the world’s total), and thereby believing god could never be displeased with her, arrogantly leading the push to divide up the land of israel and her capitol jerusalem, and in her leader’s own words, the “most powerful military machine in all history?” if any nation other than the u.s.a. fulfills all these prophecies, then i don’t know who that might be.
in truth, the evidence from my perspective is overwhelming that the nation being portrayed by these scriptures is the United States of America. it grieves me to conclude this, but the characteristics being described appear to strongly suggest this. other expositors whom i respect, e.g. noah hutchings and arno froese, believe that a literal babylon will be reborn and achieve great stature, and it is this babylon centered on modern iraq that will be judged and destroyed. only time and events will determine the truth of the matter.
the good news, Of course, is our atonement has already been made on the
cross of calvary by jesus christ, the jewish messiah. he paid the full price so that all these horrors spoken of here
will not be experienced by anyone who puts his or her full trust in the
sacrifice given us by god the father, who sent his son to die so that everyone
who believes in him will not experience god’s wrath but will be taken out of
the coming turmoil in what is popularly called “the rapture” before these horrific events take place
in the garden of eden, god gave our ancestors adam and eve just one way to rebel, by eating of the one fruit he had commanded them not to eat. in the same way, in the fullness of time, he sent his son to pay a price we could not pay as the sole cure for our inherited rebellious natures. through him, through the messiah, we could regain our state of paradise lost. that’s what being born-again means, and it is only those who have accepted that free gift of salavation who will be rescued from the great judgments coming, not only on “babylon” but indeed upon the whole world.
even so, may he Come soon!
maranatha, yeshua h’adon, our