Why End Times? (35) – Chapter 4 – Babylon

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By Rev Willem J.J. Glashouwer.. From the book Why End Times? Chapter 4 – Babylon

Bible and Science
In the above historical excursion you have encountered a mixture of historical reconstruction and Biblical data. I also have tried to weave Biblical data here and there into the reconstruction of secular history. Just like scientists who write their reconstruction of history with the help of their scientific work and secular perspective. They make use of archeological data, and, as soon as it is available, written data as well. Written sources are of course lacking before the emergence of writing and recorded written sources. The oldest ones are etched onto rocks or on clay tablets and later parchment and paper. All can be used to reconstruct ancient history.

It is my conviction that where the Bible refers to matters historical or scientific, this information is reliable. The Bible is not a history book, however, and it does not teach history in a scientific sense. The Bible is about something else: the history of salvation. That is why the Bible sometimes makes a tremendous grab at history and then, out of the blue, describes it in a way that explains the spiritual background of the historical development – what it has to tell us about God – Almighty God – and mankind.


A good example is the Bible record of Babel-Babylon-Nimrod, the building of the tower of Babel, the confusion of language and the dispersion of the nations, in Genesis 10 and 11. Even though these historical events have to be set within a scientific historical model of the Middle East, there is more to it than simply describing a few facts. What the Bible wants to do is to reveal matters that are much deeper; to expose the ‘inside’ meaning and not just provide knowledge of history, but offer insight as well. The Bible reveals the ‘spirit’ of those historical events.

Religion of Babel/Babylon
So let us listen to what the Bible has to say ‘spiritually’ about ‘Babel- Babylon’. To make the character of ‘Babylon’ clear from the outset: Jeremiah 51:7 says: “…Babylon was a gold cup in the LORD’s hand; she made the whole earth drunk. The nations drank her wine; therefore they have now gone mad.”


In Rev. Alexander Hislop’s book ‘The Two Babylons’ he says: “The quotation from Jeremiah [in the Bible] referred to makes it clear that Babel/Babylon was the source from which all the systems of idolatry stemmed. Learned historians reach the same conclusion on purely historical grounds. In the works of Zonaras we find that the general feeling of historians in ancient times concurred with this point of view even then.” Moreover, talking of arithmetic and astrology for example, he says: “It is said that both came from the Chaldeans (Babylonians) to the Egyptians and from there to the Greeks.” Well, if the Egyptians and Greeks got their arithmetic and astrology from Chaldea [Babylonia], and they saw that they were sacred sciences in Chaldea, dominated by the priests there, that is surely sufficient reason to suppose that they must have also derived their religion from the same quarter. Bunsen and Layard come to the same conclusion. Bunsen says that the religious system of Egypt came from Asia, and from the ancient Babylonian Empire. Layard says he is convinced of the very old origin of this primitive Chaldean [Babylonian] religion, and that there is convincing evidence from profane and religious history that the [religious system of Egypt] originated with the inhabitants of the Assyrian plains. It bore the title ‘perfect’ and was considered to be the oldest of all religious systems, preceding that of the Egyptians. Porphyries and Clemens postulate that the identity of the Assyrian religious doctrines corresponds with those of Egypt, and he ends by saying that Birch – on the basis of Babylonian clay cylinders and monuments – has established that the signs of the zodiac unambiguously show that the Greeks had adopted their explanations and arrangement of the zodiac (star symbols) from the Chaldeans and mixed them with their own mythology afterwards.”


Babel as the source of all religions and all scientific activity is quite something! What typifies Babel/Babylon? When do we come across Babel in the Bible for the first time? We read in Genesis 10:8: “…Cush was the father of Nimrod, who became a mighty warrior on the earth.” The Luther Translation says: ”…der war der erste, der Macht gewann auf Erden“ (he was the first to obtain power on earth). Might typifies Babel – human might, power, a kingdom in the name of mankind and his natural capabilities.


And there is also an inherent form of religion alongside ‘might’. In Genesis 11:4 we read: “…Then they said, ‘Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.’”


The tower was probably therefore a ziggurat – a Babylonian astronomical observatory, as we have said. Its top was a square tower with the ‘heavens’ on top. It had steps according to the number of planets then known and, on the square summit, the signs of the zodiac. The firmament was mapped out so that the future could be predicted by reading the stars. There was also a cult of the ‘mother goddess’, the primeval cult of all the mother-goddess-worship that came later. Nimrod and Semiramis are the origin and the symbol of all the idolatry on earth. Nature/creation is deified and man turns his back on the Creator. Babel is the city of man, with its own religion of man. Man is fallen man, however, with sin in his blood. And he is a puppet of the forces of darkness. He has chosen satan – the liar from the beginning and the murderer from the beginning – and against God. We read more about Nimrod in Genesis 10: “…that the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, Akkad, in the land of Shinar. From that land he went to Assyria and built Nineveh.”


Nineveh is the city of godlessness, upon which the prophet Jonah later pronounces judgement. And indeed, although Nineveh initial- ly repented under Jonah’s preaching, and the Lord postponed judgement, the city was later totally destroyed.


Under king Tiglath-Pileser III 745-727 BC and king Sargon II 721-705 BC, Assyria and the Assyrians carried off the 10-tribe kingdom of Israel into exile – see 2 Kings 15:29, 1 Chronicles 5:6 and 6:26 and Isai-

ah 8:23; also 2 Kings 17:6 and 18:11. And Babel and the Babylonians, under king Nebuchadnezzar II, carried off the 2-tribe kingdom of Judah into exile after completely destroying Jerusalem and the Temple – see 2 Kings 24:10-16, Jeremiah 52:28 and 2 Kings 25:11, Jeremiah 52:29. Before that, King Sennacherib – on his own admission – had already carried off 200,150 people from the large and small cities of Judah during his campaign against King Hezekiah in 701 BC.


In short, godlessness originates from the descendants of Nimrod- Semiramis in Assyria and Babylonia, who were full of hatred of God’s people Israel and turned against God’s city, Jerusalem. ‘Babylon’ will finally be destroyed, however, and ‘Jerusalem’ will be victorious, Revelation 14:8 and chapter 17-19!

To be continued.. with: Chapter 4 – Babylon – Nimrod

The book Why End Times? and other books from Rev Willem J.J. Glashouwer can be ordered from the webshop of Christians for Israel International.


Rev Willem J.J. Glashouwer
President Christians for Israel International


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