Revelation Jewish New Testament, JNT, CJNT, David H. Stern

chapter 18
1. After these things, I saw another angel coming down from heaven. He had great authority, the earth was lit up by his splendor.
2. He cried out in a strong voice,
“She has fallen! She has fallen!
Bavel the Great! (Isaiah 21:9)
She has become a home for demons,
a prison for every unclean spirit,
a prison for every unclean, hated bird.
3. “For all the nations have drunk of the wine
of God’s fury caused by her whoring —
yes, the kings of the earth went whoring with her,
and from her unrestrained love of luxury
the world’s businessmen have grown rich.”
4. Then I heard another voice out of heaven say:
“My people, come out of her!
so that you will not share in her sins,
so that you will not be infected by her plagues,
5. for her sins are a sticky mass piled up to heaven,
and God has remembered her crimes.
6. “Render to her as she rendered to others!
Pay her back double for what she has done!
Use the cup in which she has brewed
to brew her a double-sized drink!
7. “Give her as much torment and sorrow
as the glory and luxury she gave herself!
For in her heart she says, ‘I sit a queen —
I am not a widow, I will never see sorrow.’
8. “Therefore, her plagues will come in a single day —
death, sorrow and famine;
and she will be burned with fire,
because Adonai, God, her Judge, is mighty”
9. The kings of the earth who went whoring with her and shared her luxury will sob and wail over her when they see the smoke as she burns.
10. Standing at a distance, for fear of her torment, they will say,
“Oh no! The great city!
Bavel, the mighty city!
In a single hour
your judgment has come!”
11. The world’s businessmen weep and mourn over her, because no one is buying their merchandise any more —
12. stocks of gold and silver, gems and pearls, fine linen and purple, silk and scarlet, all rare woods, all ivory goods, all kinds of things made of scented wood, brass, iron and marble;
13. cinnamon, cardamom, incense, myrrh, frankincense, wine, oil, flour, grain, cattle, sheep, horses, chariots — and bodies — and people’s souls.
14. The fruits you lusted for with all your heart have gone!
All the luxury and flashiness have been destroyed, never to return!
15. The sellers of these things, who got rich from her, will stand at a distance, for fear of her torment, weeping and mourning,
16. and saying,
“Oh no! The great city used to wear fine linen, purple and scarlet!
She glittered with gold, precious stones and pearls!
17. Such great wealth —
in a single hour, ruined!”
All the ship masters, passengers, sailors and everyone making his living from the sea stood at a distance
18. and cried out when they saw the smoke as she burned, “What city was like the great city?”
19. And they threw dust on their heads as they wept and mourned, saying,
“Oh no! The great city!
The abundance of her wealth
made all the ship owners rich!
In a single hour she is ruined!”
20. Rejoice over her, heaven!
Rejoice, people of God,
emissaries and prophets!
For in judging her, God has vindicated you.
21. Then a mighty angel picked up a boulder the size of a great millstone, and hurled it into the sea, saying,
“With violence like this
will the great city Bavel
be hurled down,
never to be found again!
The size of a great millstone. The name "Gat-Sh'manim" ("Gethsemane," Mt 26:36&N) means "oil press," that is, a stone mill for grinding olives into pulp for their oil. Until quite recently the Arabs in the villages here in Israel used such presses for the same purpose, and many of the millstones are still around. They are circular with a hole in the center about 9 inches square; diameter averages about five feet, thickness a foot and weight well over a ton. 

22. “The sound of harpists and musicians,
flute-players and trumpeters
will never again be heard in you.
No worker of any trade
will ever again be found in you,
the sound of a mill
will never again be heard in you,
23. the light of a lamp
will never again shine in you,
the voice of bridegroom and bride
will never again be heard in you.
“For your businessmen were the most powerful on earth,
all the nations were deceived by your magic spell.
The voice of bridegroom and bride (a phrase found at Jeremiah 7:34, 16:9, 25:16, 33:1) will never again be heard in you, but they will be heard soon at the inauguration of God's reign (19:7-9&N). 

24. “In her was found the blood of prophets and of God’s people,
indeed, of all who have ever been slaughtered on earth!”
Compare 6:9-11.16:5-7. 17:6.19:2: also Mt 23:35.
The judgment against Babylon (see 14:8N) is against her pride, ruthlessness, greed (1 Ti 6:9-10) and materialism. It is a just judgment (15:3; 16:5, 7; 18:10, 20; 19:2), praised by God's people but mourned by the worldly and wicked who share her values. Much in this chapter resembles the lamentation in Ezekiel 27-28 over the commercial center and port of Tzor (Tyre). It is highly significant that Tyre is often understood as a surrogate for Satan's realm of activity and its king for Satan himself (this identification is based especially on Ezekiel 28:11-19). By analogy, the destruction of Babylon in this chapter is really the destruction of Satan's kingdom; the destruction of Satan himself in Chapter 20 invokes "Gog and Magog" as described in Ezekiel 38-39, which also resembles Ezekiel 27-28. 

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