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The Fall of Babylon - Artist unknown

After witnessing the Great Prostitute by the waters, John saw another angel come from heaven. The angel had great authority and the earth was illuminated by his splendor. The angel shouted,

“Fallen is Babylon the Great! She has become a dwelling for demons and a haunt for every impure spirit, a haunt for every unclean bird, a haunt for every unclean and detestable animal. All the nations have drunk the maddening wine of her adulteries. The kings of the earth committed adultery with her, and the merchants of the earth grew rich from her excessive luxuries.”

The Tower of Babel - Pieter Bruegel the Elder(1563)John heard another voice say,

“Come out of her, my people, so that you do not share in her sins, so that you do not receive any of her plagues. Her sins are piled up to heaven and God has remembered her crimes. Give back to her as she has given, pay her back double for what she has done. Pour her a double portion from her own cup. Give her as much torment and grief as the glory and luxury she gave herself. In her heart she boasts, ‘I sit enthroned as queen. I am not a widow. I will never mourn.’ Therefore, in one day her plagues will overtake her – death, mourning, and famine. She will be consumed by fire, for mighty is the Lord God who judges her.

When the kings of the earth who committed adultery with her and shared her luxury see the smoke of her burning, they will cry and mourn over her. Terrified at her torment, they will stand far off and cry, ‘Woes to you great city. In one hour, your doom has come!’

The merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her because no one buys their goods anymore, cargoes of gold, silver, precious stones and pearls, fine linen, purple silk and scarlet cloth, every sort of wood, articles of every kind made of ivory, costly wool, bronze, iron, and marble, cargoes of cinnamon and spice, incense, myrrh, and frankincense, wine and olive oil, fine flour and wheat, cattle and sheep, horses and carriages, and human beings sold as slaves.

They will say, ‘The fruit you longed for is gone from you. All your luxury and splendor has vanished, never to be recovered.’ The merchants who sold these things and gained their wealth from her will stand far off, terrified at her torment. They will weep and mourn and cry out, ‘Woe to you great city, dressed in fine linen, purple, and scarlet, and glittering with gold, precious stones, and pearls! In one hour, such great wealth has been brought to ruin!’

Every sea captain and all who travel by ship, the sailors, and all who earn their living from the sea will stand far off. When they see the smoke of her burning, they will exclaim, ‘Was there ever a city like this great city?’ They will throw dust on their heads and with weeping and mourning, cry out, “Woe to you great city, where all who had ships on the sea became rich through her wealth! In one hour, she has been brought to ruin!’

Rejoice over her. Rejoice you people of God! Rejoice apostles and prophets! For God has judged her with the judgement she imposed on you.”

Then an angel picked up a boulder the size of a large millstone and threw it into the sea and said,

“With such violence the great city of Babylon will be thrown down, never to be found again. The music of harpists and musicians, pipers, and trumpeters will never be heard in you again. No worker of any trade will ever be found in you again. The sound of a millstone will never be heard in you again. The light of a lamp will never shine in you again. The voice of bridegrooms and brides will never be heard in you again. Your merchants were the world’s most important people. By your magic spell, all the nations were led astray. In her was found the blood of prophets and of God’s holy people, of all who have been slaughtered on earth.”

What the story means to us today

Despite weeping and mourning from its residents, the Great City will be destroyed

The Fall of Babylon - Artist unknownJohn witnesses mighty angels describing the destruction of a city called “Babylon the Great” (referred to as the “Great Prostitute” in the previous chapter). The city is painted as wicked and full of excess luxuries and it must be punished for its deeds. Citizens are warned to flee the city because its judgement will be severe. The city however, shows no fear and in fact, boasts that it is untouchable.

Ultimately the city will be destroyed and those who lived there will “weep and mourn” over its destruction. Merchants will mourn the loss of their goods. Sea captains will lament of the city’s greatness. However, they will not offer to assist the city. Instead, they will stand afar watching the city burn.

All the weeping and mourning is for naught. A mighty angel throws a large boulder into the sea and compares its violent landing to the manner the great city will be “thrown down” and destroyed. Afterward, in a shocking twist, the blood of God’s holy people, all who have been slaughtered on earth is found in the depths of the great city.

Additional thoughts and considerations

The city called Babylon the Great

It is near certain that the city mentioned here as “Babylon” is the same city referred to in Revelation 17:1 as the “Great Prostitute”. In both instances, we witness the wickedness embedded within the region.

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The fate John records here sounds similar to the references to the fate of the ancient city of Babylon given in Isaiah 21:9 and Jeremiah 51:8. The parallel is purposeful. Like ancient Babylon, this modern, urban center holds detestable sin spurned by evil spirits. And like Babylon, this great city will also fall.

Those who grew rich from the city’s excess luxuries

The city’s excessive luxuries are mentioned several times in these verses. The Bible warns us about the danger of riches. This isn’t because money itself is evil but rather, the pride, arrogance, greed, selfishness, and distraction that excess riches always entail is harmful to our spirit. Ecclesiastes 5:10 tells us that “whoever loves money never has enough” and Luke 12:15 warns “life does not consist of an abundance of possessions.” Money’s intoxicating allure draws unwilling people in and ultimately places a person in servitude as they become emotionally dependent upon it.

Spend too much time in a snake pit and you will be bitten by a viper

The city possesses an uncanny allure to the people of earth. It exudes worship of things besides God: prostitution, arrogance, pride, riches, and violence. We see many cities around the world just like this today and each possesses the threat of devouring any good that enters it. Thus, the angel calls for the people to leave the sinful city, abandon its evil despite its allure and promise of happiness. This should be a gut check for every Christian. Evil is deceitful and sneaky. Christians must separate themselves ideologically and, in some instances, physically from sinful activities. Anyone who spends too much time in a snake pit will eventually be bitten by a viper.

The lament of the kings, merchants, and sea captains who became rich from the great city

The kings of the earth lament the city, but only from afar. They offer no assistance. Their sins were participating in the city’s atrocities and sharing in the city’s wealth.

The merchants are just as selfish as the kings. They lament the city, not because of sadness for her loss, but only because no one buys their cargoes anymore. They too stand far off, away from the smoke and fire that consumes the city. Their sins were using the city to gain wealth.

The sea captains lament the city too because of the irreparable loss they suffer. Everyone who profited from the city are losing all the wealth and riches they hold dear.

The judgement the city imposed on the apostles

The angel instructs the apostles to rejoice because God has judged the Great Prostitute with the same judgement she imposed on the apostles – death. On the surface, John seems to be referring to the deaths of apostles James, Peter, Paul, Stephen, and Antipas. But with a forward-looking interpretation of Revelation, the same may be attributed to future Christians who will be persecuted by an evil city. Ultimately they will rejoice because God will judge the wicked.

The final judgement

At the end of the story, an angel tosses a boulder into the ocean as an example of the destruction about to befall the great city. The city’s splendor is destroyed and its evil eradicated. This is reminiscent of the story in Jeremiah 51:63 where Jeremiah threw a stone into the Euphrates to symbolize the fall of ancient Babylon.

Finally, the angel mentions the ungodly horror found in the city – and the reason for her all-encompassing destruction of the city – the blood of God’s holy people, those who have been slaughtered on earth by the Great Prostitute.

The science and history behind the story

The merchants’ goods

The Judgment of the Great ProstituteJohn says the merchants will mourn because no one buys their cargoes. He then goes on to list the cargoes: gold, silver, pearls, fine linens, purple silk, scarlet cloth, citron wood, ivory, bronze, iron, marble, cinnamon, spice, incense, myrrh, frankincense, wine, olive oil, fine flour, wheat, cattle, sheep, horses, carriages, and slaves. The goods listed come from a variety of places including eastern Europe, southern Europe, northern Africa, eastern Africa, southern Asia, and eastern Asia.

They “threw dust on their heads”

John says the merchants lament the loss of the city using an unusual display of sadness. “They will throw dust on their heads and with weeping and mourning, cry out.” The act of throwing dust on the mourner’s head was a traditional act of mourning by both Greeks and Jews. It probably symbolizes the act of burial related to the sadness surrounding death. It is unlikely they truly threw dirt on their heads but rather, is an expression such as “throwing your hands in the air” or “pulling out your hair in frustration”.

Notes on Biblical translation

“Luxury and splendor”

John says the merchants will lament the loss of the great city saying “all your luxury and splendor have vanished”. The original words for “luxury and splendor” are “fatty things and shiny things”.

“All nations have drunk the maddening wine of her adulteries”

Various translations render this sentence as “have drunk the maddening wine”. Some however, translate the sentence as “have fallen from the maddening wine”. The original words in Greek for “drunk’ and “fallen” are spelled similarly and there is some ambiguity in the wording in various transcripts. Either translation portrays the correct message though – that all nations (e.g. gentiles) were seduced by the wicked city.

Bible Text

NIV

After this I saw another angel coming down from heaven. He had great authority, and the earth was illuminated by his splendor. 2 With a mighty voice he shouted:

“ ‘Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great!’

She has become a dwelling for demons

and a haunt for every impure spirit,

a haunt for every unclean bird,

a haunt for every unclean and detestable animal.

3 For all the nations have drunk

the maddening wine of her adulteries.

The kings of the earth committed adultery with her,

and the merchants of the earth grew rich from her excessive luxuries.”

4 Then I heard another voice from heaven say:

“ ‘Come out of her, my people,’

so that you will not share in her sins,

so that you will not receive any of her plagues;

5 for her sins are piled up to heaven,

and God has remembered her crimes.

6 Give back to her as she has given;

pay her back double for what she has done.

Pour her a double portion from her own cup.

7 Give her as much torment and grief

as the glory and luxury she gave herself.

In her heart she boasts,

‘I sit enthroned as queen.

I am not a widow;

I will never mourn.’

8 Therefore in one day her plagues will overtake her:

death, mourning and famine.

She will be consumed by fire,

for mighty is the Lord God who judges her.

9 “When the kings of the earth who committed adultery with her and shared her luxury see the smoke of her burning, they will weep and mourn over her. 10 Terrified at her torment, they will stand far off and cry:

“ ‘Woe! Woe to you, great city,

you mighty city of Babylon!

In one hour your doom has come!’

11 “The merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her because no one buys their cargoes anymore—12 cargoes of gold, silver, precious stones and pearls; fine linen, purple, silk and scarlet cloth; every sort of citron wood, and articles of every kind made of ivory, costly wood, bronze, iron and marble; 13 cargoes of cinnamon and spice, of incense, myrrh and frankincense, of wine and olive oil, of fine flour and wheat; cattle and sheep; horses and carriages; and human beings sold as slaves.

14 “They will say, ‘The fruit you longed for is gone from you. All your luxury and splendor have vanished, never to be recovered.’ 15 The merchants who sold these things and gained their wealth from her will stand far off, terrified at her torment. They will weep and mourn 16 and cry out:

“ ‘Woe! Woe to you, great city,

dressed in fine linen, purple and scarlet,

and glittering with gold, precious stones and pearls!

17 In one hour such great wealth has been brought to ruin!’

“Every sea captain, and all who travel by ship, the sailors, and all who earn their living from the sea, will stand far off. 18 When they see the smoke of her burning, they will exclaim, ‘Was there ever a city like this great city?’ 19 They will throw dust on their heads, and with weeping and mourning cry out:

“ ‘Woe! Woe to you, great city,

where all who had ships on the sea

became rich through her wealth!

In one hour she has been brought to ruin!’

20 “Rejoice over her, you heavens!

Rejoice, you people of God!

Rejoice, apostles and prophets!

For God has judged her

with the judgment she imposed on you.”

21 Then a mighty angel picked up a boulder the size of a large millstone and threw it into the sea, and said:

“With such violence

the great city of Babylon will be thrown down,

never to be found again.

22 The music of harpists and musicians, pipers and trumpeters,

will never be heard in you again.

No worker of any trade

will ever be found in you again.

The sound of a millstone

will never be heard in you again.

23 The light of a lamp

will never shine in you again.

The voice of bridegroom and bride

will never be heard in you again.

Your merchants were the world’s important people.

By your magic spell all the nations were led astray.

24 In her was found the blood of prophets and of God’s holy people,

of all who have been slaughtered on the earth.”

The New International Version. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011. Print.

Ancient merchants in RomeThe NET Bible

18:1 After these things I saw another angel, who possessed great authority, coming down out of heaven, and the earth was lit up by his radiance. 18:2 He shouted with a powerful voice:

“Fallen, fallen, is Babylon the great!

She has become a lair for demons,

a haunt for every unclean spirit,

a haunt for every unclean bird,

a haunt for every unclean and detested beast.

18:3 For all the nations have fallen from

the wine of her immoral passion,

and the kings of the earth have committed sexual immorality with her,

and the merchants of the earth have gotten rich from the power of her sensual behavior.”

18:4 Then I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, so you will not take part in her sins and so you will not receive her plagues, 18:5 because her sins have piled up all the way to heaven and God has remembered her crimes. 18:6 Repay her the same way she repaid others; pay her back double corresponding to her deeds. In the cup she mixed, mix double the amount for her. 18:7 As much as she exalted herself and lived in sensual luxury, to this extent give her torment and grief because she said to herself, ‘I rule as queen and am no widow; I will never experience grief!’ 18:8 For this reason, she will experience her plagues in a single day: disease, mourning, and famine, and she will be burned down with fire, because the Lord God who judges her is powerful!”

18:9 Then the kings of the earth who committed immoral acts with her and lived in sensual luxury with her will weep and wail for her when they see the smoke from the fire that burns her up. 18:10 They will stand a long way off because they are afraid of her torment, and will say,

“Woe, woe, O great city,

Babylon the powerful city!

For in a single hour your doom has come!”

18:11 Then the merchants of the earth will weep and mourn for her because no one buys their cargo any longer—18:12 cargo such as gold, silver, precious stones, pearls, fine linen, purple cloth, silk, scarlet cloth, all sorts of things made of citron wood, all sorts of objects made of ivory, all sorts of things made of expensive wood, bronze, iron and marble, 18:13 cinnamon, spice, incense, perfumed ointment, frankincense, wine, olive oil and costly flour, wheat, cattle and sheep, horses and four-wheeled carriages, slaves and human lives.

18:14 (The ripe fruit you greatly desired

has gone from you,

and all your luxury and splendor

have gone from you—

they will never ever be found again!)

18:15 The merchants who sold these things, who got rich from her, will stand a long way off because they are afraid of her torment. They will weep and mourn, 18:16 saying,

“Woe, woe, O great city—

dressed in fine linen, purple and scarlet clothing,

and adorned with gold, precious stones, and pearls—

18:17 because in a single hour such great wealth has been destroyed!”

And every ship’s captain, and all who sail along the coast—seamen, and all who make their living from the sea, stood a long way off 18:18 and began to shout when they saw the smoke from the fire that burned her up, “Who is like the great city?” 18:19 And they threw dust on their heads and were shouting with weeping and mourning,

“Woe, Woe, O great city—

in which all those who had ships on the sea got rich from her wealth—

because in a single hour she has been destroyed!”

18:20 (Rejoice over her, O heaven,

and you saints and apostles and prophets,

for God has pronounced judgment against her on your behalf!)

18:21 Then one powerful angel picked up a stone like a huge millstone, threw it into the sea, and said,

“With this kind of sudden violent force

Babylon the great city will be thrown down

and it will never be found again!

18:22 And the sound of the harpists, musicians,

flute players, and trumpeters

will never be heard in you again.

No craftsman who practices any trade

will ever be found in you again;

the noise of a mill will never be heard in you again.

18:23 Even the light from a lamp

will never shine in you again!

The voices of the bridegroom and his bride

will never be heard in you again.

For your merchants were the tycoons of the world,

because all the nations were deceived by your magic spells!

18:24 The blood of the saints and prophets was found in her,

along with the blood of all those who had been killed on the earth.”

Biblical Studies Press. The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible. Biblical Studies Press, 2006. Print.

New King James Version

18 After these things I saw another angel coming down from heaven, having great authority, and the earth was illuminated with his glory. 2 And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! 3 For all the nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth have become rich through the abundance of her luxury.”

4 And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. 5 For her sins have reached to heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities. 6 Render to her just as she rendered to you, and repay her double according to her works; in the cup which she has mixed, mix double for her. 7 In the measure that she glorified herself and lived luxuriously, in the same measure give her torment and sorrow; for she says in her heart, ‘I sit as queen, and am no widow, and will not see sorrow.’ 8 Therefore her plagues will come in one day—death and mourning and famine. And she will be utterly burned with fire, for strong is the Lord God who judges her.

9 “The kings of the earth who committed fornication and lived luxuriously with her will weep and lament for her, when they see the smoke of her burning, 10 standing at a distance for fear of her torment, saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! For in one hour your judgment has come.’

11 “And the merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her, for no one buys their merchandise anymore: 12 merchandise of gold and silver, precious stones and pearls, fine linen and purple, silk and scarlet, every kind of citron wood, every kind of object of ivory, every kind of object of most precious wood, bronze, iron, and marble; 13 and cinnamon and incense, fragrant oil and frankincense, wine and oil, fine flour and wheat, cattle and sheep, horses and chariots, and bodies and souls of men. 14 The fruit that your soul longed for has gone from you, and all the things which are rich and splendid have gone from you, and you shall find them no more at all. 15 The merchants of these things, who became rich by her, will stand at a distance for fear of her torment, weeping and wailing, 16 and saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city that was clothed in fine linen, purple, and scarlet, and adorned with gold and precious stones and pearls! 17 For in one hour such great riches came to nothing.’ Every shipmaster, all who travel by ship, sailors, and as many as trade on the sea, stood at a distance 18 and cried out when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, ‘What is like this great city?’

19 “They threw dust on their heads and cried out, weeping and wailing, and saying, ‘Alas, alas, that great city, in which all who had ships on the sea became rich by her wealth! For in one hour she is made desolate.’

20 “Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you holy apostles and prophets, for God has avenged you on her!”

21 Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, “Thus with violence the great city Babylon shall be thrown down, and shall not be found anymore. 22 The sound of harpists, musicians, flutists, and trumpeters shall not be heard in you anymore. No craftsman of any craft shall be found in you anymore, and the sound of a millstone shall not be heard in you anymore. 23 The light of a lamp shall not shine in you anymore, and the voice of bridegroom and bride shall not be heard in you anymore. For your merchants were the great men of the earth, for by your sorcery all the nations were deceived. 24 And in her was found the blood of prophets and saints, and of all who were slain on the earth.”

The New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982. Print.

The Message

18 Following this I saw another Angel descend from Heaven. His authority was immense, his glory flooded earth with brightness, his voice thunderous:

Ruined, ruined, Great Babylon, ruined!

A ghost town for demons is all that’s left!

A garrison of carrion spirits,

garrison of loathsome, carrion birds.

All nations drank the wild wine of her whoring;

kings of the earth went whoring with her;

entrepreneurs made millions exploiting her.

Just then I heard another shout out of Heaven:

Get out, my people, as fast as you can,

so you don’t get mixed up in her sins,

so you don’t get caught in her doom.

Her sins stink to high Heaven;

God has remembered every evil she’s done.

Give her back what she’s given,

double what she’s doubled in her works,

double the recipe in the cup she mixed;

Bring her flaunting and wild ways

to torment and tears.

Because she gloated, “I’m queen over all,

and no widow, never a tear on my face,”

In one day, disasters will crush her—

death, heartbreak, and famine—

Then she’ll be burned by fire, because God,

the Strong God who judges her,

has had enough.

9–10 “The kings of the earth will see the smoke of her burning, and they’ll cry and carry on, the kings who went night after night to her brothel. They’ll keep their distance for fear they’ll get burned, and they’ll cry their lament:

Doom, doom, the great city doomed!

City of Babylon, strong city!

In one hour it’s over, your judgment come!

11–17 “The traders will cry and carry on because the bottom dropped out of business, no more market for their goods: gold, silver, precious gems, pearls; fabrics of fine linen, purple, silk, scarlet; perfumed wood and vessels of ivory, precious woods, bronze, iron, and marble; cinnamon and spice, incense, myrrh, and frankincense; wine and oil, flour and wheat; cattle, sheep, horses, and chariots. And slaves—their terrible traffic in human lives.

Everything you’ve lived for, gone!

All delicate and delectable luxury, lost!

Not a scrap, not a thread to be found!

“The traders who made millions off her kept their distance for fear of getting burned, and cried and carried on all the more:

Doom, doom, the great city doomed!

Dressed in the latest fashions,

adorned with the finest jewels,

in one hour such wealth wiped out!

17–19 “All the ship captains and travelers by sea, sailors and toilers of the sea, stood off at a distance and cried their lament when they saw the smoke from her burning: ‘Oh, what a city! There was never a city like her!’ They threw dust on their heads and cried as if the world had come to an end:

Doom, doom, the great city doomed!

All who owned ships or did business by sea

Got rich on her getting and spending.

And now it’s over—wiped out in one hour!

20 “O Heaven, celebrate! And join in, saints, apostles, and prophets! God has judged her; every wrong you suffered from her has been judged.”

21–24 A strong Angel reached for a boulder—huge, like a millstone—and heaved it into the sea, saying,

Heaved and sunk, the great city Babylon,

sunk in the sea, not a sign of her ever again.

Silent the music of harpists and singers—

you’ll never hear flutes and trumpets again.

Artisans of every kind—gone;

you’ll never see their likes again.

The voice of a millstone grinding falls dumb;

you’ll never hear that sound again.

The light from lamps, never again;

never again laughter of bride and groom.

Her traders robbed the whole earth blind,

and by black-magic arts deceived the nations.

The only thing left of Babylon is blood—

the blood of saints and prophets,

the murdered and the martyred.

Peterson, Eugene H. The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language. Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 2005. Print.

King James Version

And after these things I saw another angel come down from heaven, having great power; and the earth was lightened with his glory. 2 And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying,

Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen,

And is become the habitation of devils,

And the hold of every foul spirit,

And a cage of every unclean and hateful bird.

3  For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication,

And the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her,

And the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.

4  And I heard another voice from heaven, saying,

Come out of her, my people,

That ye be not partakers of her sins,

And that ye receive not of her plagues.

5  For her sins have reached unto heaven,

And God hath remembered her iniquities.

6  Reward her even as she rewarded you,

And double unto her double according to her works:

In the cup which she hath filled fill to her double.

7  How much she hath glorified herself, and lived deliciously,

So much torment and sorrow give her:

For she saith in her heart, I sit a queen,

And am no widow, and shall see no sorrow.

8  Therefore shall her plagues come in one day,

Death, and mourning, and famine;

And she shall be utterly burned with fire:

For strong is the Lord God who judgeth her.

9  And the kings of the earth, who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her,

Shall bewail her, and lament for her,

When they shall see the smoke of her burning,

10  Standing afar off for the fear of her torment,

Saying, Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city!

For in one hour is thy judgment come.

11  And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her;

For no man buyeth their merchandise any more:

12  The merchandise of gold, and silver,

And precious stones, and of pearls,

And fine linen, and purple, and silk, and scarlet,

And all thyine wood, and all manner vessels of ivory,

And all manner vessels of most precious wood,

And of brass, and iron, and marble,

13  And cinnamon, and odors,

And ointments, and frankincense,

And wine, and oil,

And fine flour, and wheat,

And beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots,

And slaves, and souls of men.

14  And the fruits that thy soul lusted after are departed from thee,

And all things which were dainty and goodly are departed from thee,

And thou shalt find them no more at all.

15  The merchants of these things, which were made rich by her,

Shall stand afar off for the fear of her torment,

Weeping and wailing, 16 And saying,

Alas, alas, that great city,

That was clothed in fine linen, and purple, and scarlet,

And decked with gold, and precious stones, and pearls!

17  For in one hour so great riches is come to naught.

And every shipmaster, and all the company in ships,

And sailors, and as many as trade by sea,

Stood afar off, 18 And cried

When they saw the smoke of her burning, saying,

What city is like unto this great city!

19  And they cast dust on their heads,

And cried, weeping and wailing, saying,

Alas, alas, that great city,

Wherein were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness!

For in one hour is she made desolate.

20  Rejoice over her, thou heaven,

And ye holy apostles and prophets;

For God hath avenged you on her.

21 And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying,

Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all.

22  And b the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee;

And no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee;

And the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee;

23  And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee;

And the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee:

For thy merchants were the great men of the earth;

For by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.

24  And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints,

And of all that were slain upon the earth.

The Holy Bible: King James Version. Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version. Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009. Print.

Sources: NIV, The Message, The NET Bible, King James Version, NET Bible Notes, Faithlife Study Bible, The Apologetics Study Bible, The Bible Knowledge Commentary, Jamieson, Fausset, Brown Commentary, The Bible Reader’s Companion, Matthew Henry’s Commentary, Holman Concise Bible Commentary, The Bible Exposition Commentary, The Teacher’s Bible Commentary, The Teacher’s Commentary, The Bible Guide, Word Studies in the New Testament, Holman Bible Handbook, Calvin Commentaries, Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines, The New Manner and Customs of the Bible, Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary, The Lexham Bible Dictionary, Easton’s Bible Dictionary, Harper’s Bible Dictionary, Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible, The Archaeological Encyclopedia, Biblical Archaeology Review, The New Bible Dictionary, The Lexham Analytical Lexicon, Glossary of Morpho-Syntactic Database
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