(18.2) 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.
1. Notice the method of this great angel: “And he cried mightily with a strong voice.”
a. The Greek word that is here translated “cried” is the word krazw. The word refers to screaming, to crying out with a loud voice. Therefore, the basic concept here is an angel sent from God with dazzling glory that lights up the dark sky, who wields the great authority given to him by God to accomplish his mission by screaming his message to the world.
b. But this incandescent angel with great authority does not only scream. Our text says, “he cried mightily with a strong voice.” That is, he cried or screamed powerfully with a jwnh megalh. Change the order of those last two words and you have, essentially, the word megaphone, powerful voice.
c. My friends, unless there is some kind of supernatural compensation for what the angel does with his voice, the decibel level, the amount of energy involved in this angel crying out for all mankind around the world to hear, will destroy the hearing of many, and almost certainly kill many people.
d. Who would be protected from harm by this blast of sound? Those in hiding. Those Jews and Christians who have sought refuge in the caves and basements, who dare not show their faces for fear the antichrist’s storm troopers, will identify them by their lack of a mark on their forehead or the back of their right hand.
e. So you see, “all things do work together for good to them that love God.” Persecution is a terrible thing. But persecution drives people into hiding. And it would only be in hiding that people would be safe from the devastating effects of this angel’s loud cry.
2. Now, take note of the message of this great angel. It is found in the rest of verse 2 and in verse 3, but I will only read the rest of verse 2 at this time: “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.”
a. The message begins, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen.” That this is political and commercial Babylon seems evidenced by the fact that Isaiah in Isaiah 21.9 predicts this very thing, and Isaiah was referring to the nation of Babylon in his prophecy. Turn there and read along with me:
“And, behold, here cometh a chariot of
men, with a couple of horsemen.
And he answered and said, Babylon is fallen, is fallen; and all the graven
images of her gods he hath broken unto the ground.”
b. The pronouncement is made that commercial Babylon is destroyed and has become the habitation of devils, and the cage of every unclean and hateful bird. Turn to two other passages, if you will:
Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees' excellency,
shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah.
shall never be inhabited, neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to
generation: neither shall the Arabian pitch tent there; neither shall the
shepherds make their fold there.
wild beasts of the desert shall lie there; and their houses shall be full
of doleful creatures; and owls shall dwell there, and satyrs shall dance
22 And the wild beasts of the islands shall cry in their desolate houses, and dragons in their pleasant palaces: and her time is near to come, and her days shall not be prolonged.
drought is upon her waters; and
they shall be dried up: for it is the land of graven images, and they are mad upon their
the wild beasts of the desert with the wild beasts of the islands shall
dwell there, and the owls shall
dwell therein: and it shall be no more inhabited for ever; neither shall
it be dwelt in from generation to generation.
40 As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighbour cities thereof, saith the LORD; so shall no man abide there, neither shall any son of man dwell therein.
3. When you read Revelation 18.2 together with the Isaiah and Jeremiah passages a couple of conclusions seem reasonable:
a. Since the Revelation passage refers to a future event the Isaiah and Jeremiah passages would seem to also refer to a future event, since the three seem to parallel each other.
b. Since the Isaiah and Jeremiah passages refer to a literal Babylon, not a strictly religious one, so also ought Revelation 18 to be referring to a literal city of Babylon.
c. Finally, since no literal city of Babylon presently exists, and since old Babylon was not overthrown by God the way Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding cities were by fire from heaven, we might very well expect Babylon to be rebuilt sometime before the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, so that these prophecies could be literally fulfilled.
(18.3) 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.
1. Notice the reach of political and commercial Babylon’s tentacles. All nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication. The merchants of the earth have waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.
2. Folks, Babylon will push the engine of big business and commerce to the absolute maximum. If there has been a more destructive force in the family unit or in the church than lust-driven commercialism and the insane drive to make money, I do not know what it could be.
3. What ever happened to the man who refused overtime at work so he could serve God? What ever happened to the man who changed jobs so he could serve God? What ever happened to the man who made everything come second to taking his family to worship God together? And what happened to forsaking a job or a promotion so that your family might stay in their church home where God had so often blessed them in the past?
4. May God help us to avoid that mad rush for the accumulation of wealth that ruins so many Christians today. Ruining many by failure and ruining the rest by success. Instead, let us simply sow faithfully that we might later reap in due season, if we faint not. Let us have nothing of Babylonianism in our thinking or our behavior.
(18.4) 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.
1. We have already noted that religious Babylon has been destroyed by the antichrist and his followers, probably because her usefulness had ended. Now we see the warning that goes forth just prior to the destruction of commercial and political Babylon.
2. Note again the difference between religious and political Babylon. There was no warning in chapter 17 before religious Babylon was destroyed. Why? Because it was not God Who destroyed her, but the antichrist. Here, as God prepares to destroy political Babylon, He gives a warning to His Own.
3. Notice how this seems to parallel the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. If there remain any of God’s children who still mix and mingle with Babylon just prior to the Lord’s return, they had better get out now. Judgment is about to come swiftly and completely.
 Fritz Rienecker & Cleon Rogers, Linguistic Key To The Greek New Testament, (Grand Rapids, MI: Regency Reference Library, 1980), page 851.