As we move forward with our study of Biblical Prophecy, we need to know about Babylon. Babylon’s evil ways are spotlighted in the book of Daniel, an account of faithful Jews taken into exile to that city when Jerusalem was conquered. So arrogant was Nebuchadnezzar that he had a 90-foot tall gold statue built of himself and commanded everyone to worship it. The story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the fiery furnace tells what happened when they refused and stayed true to God instead. The Babylonians destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple and led the Jewish people into the 70 years of the Babylonian captivity between 600BC-500BC.
The ancient city of Babylon plays a major role in the Bible, representing a rejection of the One True God. It was one of the cities founded by King Nimrod, according to Genesis 10:9-10. Babylon was located in Shinar, in ancient Mesopotamia on the eastern bank of the Euphrates River. Babylon is referenced 280 times in the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. God sometimes used the Babylonian Empire to punish Israel, but his prophets foretold that Babylon’s sins would eventually cause its own destruction.
In an age when empires rose and fell, Babylon enjoyed an unusually long reign of power and grandeur. Despite its sinful ways, it developed one of the most advanced civilizations in the ancient world. Ironically, Babylon means “gate of god.” After the Babylonian empire was conquered by the Persian kings Darius and Xerxes, most of the impressive buildings of Babylon were destroyed. Alexander the Great started to restore the city in 323 BC and planned to make it the capital of his empire, but he died that year in Nebuchadnezzar’s palace.
The city of Babylon is currently in ruins. Yet we know it will rise to power again because of biblical prophecy. The eighteenth chapter of Revelation says Babylon will once again rule the economic world, this time as a hub for the Antichrist’s one–world economy. In the End Times, it will rise—and fall—again.