What is Mystery Babylon of Revelation chapters 17 and 18?
First of all, it is called by John a “mystery.” This means that either it is not easily understood or solved, or that it cannot be solved until due time. John is astonished when he sees her. He would never have expected her perhaps.
A list of traits of Babylon:
1. “has rule over the kings of the earth.” Rev. 17:8 It takes 10 kings to defeat her. A Superpower.
2. Great wealth and luxury and high prices.
3. Responsible for the murders of saints and prophets, and indeed “all the slain upon the earth”
Candidates for Babylon I have heard of are: Rome, Jerusalem, New York, London, and Babylon itself rebuilt in Iraq. Another, non-city candidate I have heard is “the ungodly world system.”
Rev. 17:18 “And the woman which you saw is that great city that has rule over the kings of the earth.”
This one eliminates Jerusalem. And Rome as well, unless you go with a preterist interpretation, where it was already fulfilled. But then I would ask, so did “my people come out of her” out of Rome? No, they did not. And Rome was not burned in one day by the beast and 10 kings. Present day Rome certainly does not “have rule over the kings of the earth.”
Rev. 17:16 “And the ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the prostitute, and they will lay her waste, and bare, and eat her flesh, and burn her up with fire.”
So, the 10 kings and the beast will hate this city. They are the ones who will actually attack and burn Babylon. This eliminates certainly, the idea that Babylon is the ungodly world system. Why would the beast and Satan hate its own?
This also tells us that we are talking about maybe a world superpower, because it takes 10 kings to gang up on it to defeat it. Also, it had had “rule over the kings of the earth.”
I declare that Rome, Jerusalem, and “the ungodly world system” are eliminated as candidates.
That really only leaves New York, London, and Babylon resurrected.
Why New York? (and by extension USA) It has rule of the kings of the earth, both since the United Nations is there, and because other world government entities are there, like the International Monetary Fund, etc. Also that the USA is a military power throwing its weight around everywhere.
Why London? Well, that is the heaviest concentration of super-wealthy people in the world, plus the British Intelligence has more control in the world than people realize.
I say that it is the club of the super-wealthy that are generally responsible for more human deaths than any one.
A re-built Babylon is remotely possible. That would have to be quite a distance in the future.
There is no entity in the past, like would be needed in a preterist point of view, that would fit Babylon, in my opinion.
Where is America in end times prophecy? It is gone by then, unless America is Babylon. I am beginning to think that in 2 Thessalonians, where Paul said, “and you know what is restraining the beast, until it is taken out of the way,” I’m beginning to think that only America is in the way. And that is what must be “taken out of the way” with its pesky constitution.