Babylon’s Expiration Date

Praise the Lord! The smoke from that city ascends forever and ever! (Revelation 19:3, NLT)

Revelation chapters 17 through 19 teach that evil has an expiration date. The focus of these chapters is Babylon.

I’ve listened to one commentator say that Babylon was New York City. Close but not enough total evil in New York for it to be the Babylon of the book of Revelation.  

We might add the combined evil in Hollywood, Las Vegas, Beijing, San Francisco, Moscow, Rio de Janeiro, Pyongyang, New Orleans, and Washington D.C., plus every other city in the world, and we’re still not close to the Babylon of Revelation.

Babylon in the book of Revelation could be a city, but it is also a figurative depiction of the totality of the evil in the world’s systems of government, politics, social media, economies, and culture.

The Apostle John describes Babylon as . . . 

  • The kings of the world committed adultery with her (Rev. 17:2).
  • The world has been made drunk by the wine of her immorality (Rev. 17:3)
  • The city is blasphemous, obscene, and drunk with the blood of martyrs (Rev. 17:3-6).
  • The home of demons and a hideout for every foul spirit (Rev. 18:2)
  • A place of great wealth accumulated through injustice (Rev. 18:3).

The sins of Babylon pile up – through the ages, into this century, more and more – until God shouts, “Enough!”

The Apostle John describes the expiration date of Babylon . . . 

  • God remembers her evil deeds (Rev. 18:5).
  • Do double to her what she has done to others (Rev. 18:6).
  • Twice the terror to her that she brought to others (Rev. 18:6).
  • Her luxury will be matched with torment (Rev. 18:7).
  • Her self-contentment and pursuit of pleasure brings her unrelenting plagues and torments (Rev. 18:8).

Uh, oh! No wonder the Apostle John gives this warning to believers . . . 

Come away from her, my people. Do not take part in her sins, or you will be punished with her (Rev. 18:4). 

A time will come when God wipes out evil. It will be judgment without remorse or grace. God comes back, and evil is destroyed by His presence! Light quickly eliminates darkness.

I remember the first Star Wars movie when Luke fired a missile that ultimately destroyed the Death Star – a spaceship the size of a moon that could destroy planets. The Death Star had a singular purpose. It was to traipse around the universe, destroying the planetary homes of those who stood against the Evil Empire.

When the Death Star blew up, the audience stood up, clapping and cheering.

In Revelation 19, we witness the crowd reaction of heaven at the destruction of Babylon . . . 

Praise the Lord! Salvation and glory, and power belong to our God. His judgments are true and just. He has punished the great prostitute who corrupted the earth with her immorality. He has avenged the murder of his servants (Rev. 19:1-2).

Babylon has an expiration date, all evil does too.  

Only by God’s grace we don’t. We should stand and cheer.

Read more on the book of Revelation in Interruptions #280, #281, #295, #307, #316, #333, #343, #364, #380, #395, #406, #432, and #433 at Also, read more on the Judgment of God in Interruption #760.

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