Many people have some familiarity with Babylon from a historical perspective; the Hanging Gardens that once grew there are famous, being one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
Within Babylon a tower was constructed containing the inscription, “Tower of Babel Stele,” as indicated by archaeological evidence.[i] In Scripture, the Tower of Babel was the place where all the people of the earth spoke one language, eventually building a huge tower that reached to the heavens. This act was ultimately associated with defiance to God as the people were filled with pride over their creation and its ability to exalt them to the heavens as though gods, as though a people truly in touch with god. The Tower of Babel Stele in Babylon is also known as a ziggurat by the name of Etemenanki,[ii] meaning “temple of the foundation of heaven and earth.” Is there not some arrogance in such a title, as though this man-made creation is truly the foundation of heaven and earth? Can mankind create the foundation of heaven and earth?
In Babylon, the temple was dedicated to the Babylonian god Marduk, the chief god of the empire. Marduk used a divine weapon called Imhullu to savage the earth goddess Tiamat in the Mesopotamian story of creation, Enuma Elish.[iii] Imhullu is “the atrocious wind, the tempest, the whirlwind, the hurricane, the wind of four and the wind of seven, the tumid wind worst of all.” Accordingly, creation is fraught with savagery and violent upheaval.
“‘Look, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. Come, let us go down, and confuse their language there, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.’ So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. Therefore it was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.”
Some may wonder why God would thwart human development. Was it not pride that caused Satan to turn from the Lord and fall from grace? How often do we as a people head the wrong direction as we’re filled with pride in our own achievements? How often do we turn from God and say to ourselves, “I do not need God, look at all we’ve accomplished on our own with our buildings and science? Surely God had nothing to do with it!”
What kind of attitude is reflected in mainstream culture in light of human achievements? Do we give glory to God for making all these things possible? Our technology allows us to send a message to another person on the other side of the globe, translated into their own language, in an instant with the push of a button. Is the reality of this achievement simply the result of chance in a universe that spontaneously started from nothing? Or, do we owe thanksgiving to God, who created the human soul and all the material in the Universe?
In the second book of Kings, chapter 20, we learn about the end of Hezekiah’s reign.
“At that time King Merodach-baladan son of Baladan of Babylon sent envoys with letters and a present to Hezekiah, for he had heard that Hezekiah had been sick. Hezekiah welcomed them; he showed them all his treasure house, the silver, the gold, the spices, the precious oil, his armory, all that was found in his storehouses; there was nothing in his house or in all his realm that Hezekiah did not show them. Then the prophet Isaiah came to King Hezekiah, and said to him, “What did these men say? From where did they come to you?” Hezekiah answered, “They have come from a far country, from Babylon.” He said, “What have they seen in your house?” Hezekiah answered, “They have seen all that is in my house; there is nothing in my storehouses that I did not show them.” Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the Lord: Days are coming when all that is in your house, and that which your ancestors have stored up until this day, shall be carried to Babylon; nothing shall be left, says the Lord. Some of your own sons who are born to you shall be taken away; they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.” Then Hezekiah said to Isaiah, “The word of the Lord that you have spoken is good.” For he thought, “Why not, if there will be peace and security in my days?””[vi]
What countries on earth acknowledge a Creator in their founding documents? Where do we read of a Creator who endowed mankind with unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness / possession of property?
America’s founders were primarily influenced by the Word of God, as accurately described in David Barton’s “American Heritage” series. The people of God could be found under Hezekiah’s reign, for…
“He did what was right in the sight of the Lord just as his ancestor David had done. He removed the high places, broke down the pillars, and cut down the sacred pole. He broke in pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the people of Israel had made offerings to it; it was called Nehushtan. He trusted in the Lord the God of Israel; so that there was no one like him among all the kings of Judah after him, or among those who were before him. For he held fast to the Lord; he did not depart from following him but kept the commandments that the Lord commanded Moses. The Lord was with him; wherever he went, he prospered. He rebelled against the king of Assyria and would not serve him. He attacked the Philistines as far as Gaza and its territory, from watch-tower to fortified city.”[vii]
Can the people of God be found in America? Can they be found in one of the few countries that acknowledges a Creator in her founding documents? Did you know that the majority of America’s citizens describe themselves as Christian?[viii]
And yet, Isaiah stated to Hezekiah,
“Hear the word of the Lord: Days are coming when all that is in your house, and that which your ancestors have stored up until this day, shall be carried to Babylon; nothing shall be left, says the Lord. Some of your own sons who are born to you shall be taken away; they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.”
Is this the fate of the people of God… that all their possessions be carried away to a foreign land? Will God’s chosen people be neutered and forced to serve a foreign ruler? Is America a nation that honors her Father? Is she willing to defend His Truths in the public square and abroad? Are peace and security more important to her, as they were to Hezekiah, than her recognition as a nation founded on His Truths and composed primarily of His chosen people?
How does St. John describe Babylon in the Book of Revelation? He describes Babylon the Great as a Whore.[ix] This Whore is likened to Sodom and Egypt, places where iniquity and the violation of human rights were prevalent. This Whore commits fornication with the kings of the earth.
Throughout the Old Testament, God desires His people to be pure, to worship Him and Him alone. He often describes His people as His bride; He is the bridegroom. The 1st Commandment confirms that He alone is worthy or worship. Having other god’s before Him is idolatry, fornication. When Israel forsakes her bridegroom, she suffers.
Consider the story of the Israelites in the book of Joshua, chapter 7, how they lost the battle with Ai, how their hearts turned to water. This happened because one of their members, Achan, had taken devoted things [idols] that should have been destroyed, hiding them beside his tent. His disobedience impacted all of Israel, all of His chosen people.
“Israel has sinned; they have transgressed my covenant that I imposed on them. They have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen, they have acted deceitfully, and they have put them among their own belongings. Therefore the Israelites are unable to stand before their enemies; they turn their backs to their enemies, because they have become a thing devoted for destruction themselves. I will be with you no more, unless you destroy the devoted things from among you.” (Joshua 7:11-12)
America can be likened to a prostitute in her idolatry, in her failure to acknowledge the Truths of the One True God in her policies and public works, Truths of basic human rights. Does she turn a blind eye to Philistines who remove the 10 Commandments, the name of God, Holy Scripture and prayer from public schools? Does she allow fornication with the kings of the earth for the sake of peace and stability? Is she wealthy as the Whore described by St. John? When the servants of God are killed, these saints who work in foreign lands to spread the Good News, does she turn away or does she support their vindication?
Babylon represents polygamy with foreign ideas and gods, to falsehood. It represents a city of ideological tolerance at the expense of acknowledging Truth. The longer America denies the One True God, denies His Truth, the longer will her assets be carried off to foreign nations, the longer will her citizens be afflicted with crime, immorality and violations of human rights, such as the innocent boys and girls being ripped apart, legally, in their mother’s wombs on a daily basis.
The Whore of Babylon, drunk on the blood of the saints and the Martyrs of Jesus, denies knowledge of when human life begins to rationalize the violation of our most basic right, a right to life.
[iv] New International Version of 1 Kings 19:12
[v] Contemporary English Version of 1 Kings 19:12
[vi] 2 Kings 20:12-19
[vii] 2 Kings 18:1-8
[viii] 70.6% of Americans can be classified as Christian (Pew Research Center: Religion & Public Life. Religious Landscape Study. Online. http://www.pewforum.org/religious-landscape-study/)
[ix] Revelation 17:5