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1.4.2.2. One or Two Babylons

The question is, how different from the Babylon of chapter 17 is the Babylon of chapter 18? Undoubtedly the city is the same in both instances. Both have the name “Babylon the great” (Rev. Rev. 17:5+; Rev. 18:2+). Both are guilty of fornication (Rev. Rev. 17:1+, Rev. 17:2+, Rev. 17:4+, Rev. 17:5+, Rev. 17:16+; Rev. 18:3+) and of causing the kings of the earth and the earth-dwellers to imbibe of the wine (of the anger) of the city’s fornication (Rev. Rev. 17:2+; Rev. 18:3+). The destiny of both is to be burned with fire (Rev. Rev. 17:16+; Rev. 18:8+, Rev. 18:9+, Rev. 18:18+) and to become an utter desolation (Rev. Rev. 17:16+; Rev. 18:17+, Rev. 18:19+). In both chapters Babylon is “the great city” (Rev. Rev. 17:18+; Rev. 18:10+, Rev. 18:16+, Rev. 18:18+. 19, 21) and wears the apparel and adornment of a harlot (Rev. Rev. 17:4+; Rev. 18:16+). Both are responsible for the martyrdom of the faithful (Rev. Rev. 17:6+; Rev. 18:20+, Rev. 18:24+ [cf. Rev. 19:2+]).2

2 Robert L. Thomas, Revelation 8-22 (Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1995), Rev. 18:1.

3 “The speaker [at Rev. Rev. 19:9+] is one of the angels of the seven last plagues who initiated his role as John’s guide in Rev. Rev. 17:1+.”—Ibid., Rev. 19:9.

4 E. W. Bullinger, Commentary On Revelation (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1984, 1935), Rev. 18:2.

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