History of Mystery Babylon
We read in Revelation 18, “Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great!” What is the Bible talking about when it is referring to Babylon the Great? We are going to take a closer look at Babylon because it has been such a mystery throughout the generations, and it seems to be a central focal point of the Revelation. We want to look at how the Babylonian Empire began, but first we need to start with Noah.
Noah knew God because of Adam, because Adam was still alive during the time of Noah. The Bible tells us in
Genesis 6:9 that Noah was a righteous man and a preacher of righteousness. But we also know from God’s Word that not everyone knew God. These people perished in the flood. From the epic creation poem Gilgamesh, we learn how man survived a Great Flood. The Biblical account of creation and the flood told by these ancient Mesopotamian religions are very close except for the mention of the One True God. Though the only survivors of the flood were Noah and his family, that did not stop the Evil One from continuing to tempt people into idol worship. Genesis 10 gives us the complete account of the new world after the flood. In verses 8-9 it tells us, “Cush (the son of Ham, the son of Noah) was the father of Nimrod, who became a mighty warrior on the earth. He was a mighty hunter before the Lord. The first centers of his kingdom were Babylon, Uruk, Akkad and Kalneh, in Shinar.” So we see that Babylon had its beginning after the flood, and Nimrod was the first ruler of what would become a great nation. The capital of ancient Babylon was Babel, and we know from the Bible what took place in Babel. Genesis 11:3-4 tells us, “They said to each other, ‘Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly.’ They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar. Then they said, ‘Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower (a ziggurat) 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.’” God saw this and He confused their language so that people could not come together as one people for purposes of power, and as we see they wanted a name for themselves, not for God. We see here the beginnings of Secular Humanism, the worship of self as a god, for we all now become gods and so we have no need of the One True God. We see that God scattered the people, the very thing that they did not want to happen. Since the Tower of Babel, people have gone out to conquer lands for the purpose of power and might. Ancient Babylon was about 55 miles south of modern day Baghdad. Babylon was ruled by Hammurabi after Nimrod. Hammurabi was an Amorite—a Semitic group of people that settled in Mesopotamia in about 2000 BC.
Hammurabi had his own code of laws and religion. We see that many of Hammurabi’s laws are still in effect today, such as an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, and cutting off one’s hand for stealing. Hammurabi built Babylon to be a great city with intersecting roads and canals. Hammurabi had the people build many temples to many gods. They built temples called ziggurats. One of their chief gods was called Marduk. Shamash was the name of the sun god. From the Enuma Elish, the epic poem of this ancient religion, we learn how Marduk becomes the chief god. The people eventually called him “Bel,” which means “lord.” The Bible tells us that Abraham was from the town of Ur of the Chaldeans. Ur was a city south of Babylon, which is in the modern state of Iraq. Ur could have been called Urak originally as it tells us in Genesis 10:10, listing it as one of Cush’s original kingdoms. We know that Abram’s family worshiped all of the idol gods of Mesopotamia. Abram and his wife left with his father Terah and his brother Nahor and his wife and Lot the son of Haran to go to Canaan, but they only went as far as Haran, which was on the border of modern day Syria, Turkey, and Iraq, and settled there (Genesis 11:13). It was from there that God called Abram to leave his country and relatives to go to the land that God would show him. It was here that Abram and Sarai left to serve the One True Living God, a God that he did not totally know. It is here that God tells the first of His chosen to flee what came to be known as the Babylonian Empire. So let’s take a closer look at the religion of Babylon and how it got its beginning.
The History of Mystery Babylon’s Humanistic Religion
Humanism has its roots all the way back to when the Evil One spoke this in his heart, as we see in Isaiah 14:1-2, “How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! . . . You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’” “How you have fallen,” and he did fall. The Evil One, the Devil, Satan himself, now was on a quest to bring people to himself and to be their god and to have them worship him. He was there in the Garden of Eden when he spoke to Eve as recorded in Genesis 3:1-5, “He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say, “You must not eat from any tree in the garden”?’" When Eve responds, he continues, "‘You will not certainly die,’ the serpent said to the woman. ‘For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’”
Here it is: “You will be like God.” Humanism is the belief that we are all gods. At the Tower of Babel the people did not build to bring honor to God but to themselves. If we are not living for God then we are living for ourselves, and the worship of ourselves is the worship of the Evil One. When Yeshua (Jesus) was tested in the wilderness, what did He say to him, as we see in Matthew 4:8-10? “Yeshua said to him, ‘Away from me, Satan! For it is written: “Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.”’” The Father of Lies has been telling a lie from the beginning—that we can be gods. We hear it today: “You deserve a break today,” “You owe it to yourself,” “You earned it,” “If it feels good do it,” “Experience all that life has to offer.” In Genesis we see that the lie he spoke to Eve was that it is okay to question the Word of God, that man cannot trust God because God lies. Satan lied when he said, “We can be like God,” “We all can be gods,” “If God cannot be trusted then He is not supreme and therefore there are no absolutes, no morals, no truth, and so this now allows us to rebel against God, because God was and is the liar.” We are now free from all restraints. Humanism's emphasis is on secular concerns: “I am the center of the universe.” We have replaced the Word of God with science, philosophy, and man’s reason. We seek for man’s enlightenment and knowledge. Paul tells us in 2 Timothy 3:1-4, “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.” Paul also tells us in 1 Corinthians 1:20-21, “Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.” So what do Humanists believe? Let's take a look at their own manifesto. In 1933, the Humanist Manifesto I was published. Here are 15 key points: 1. It begins with there is no Creator; 2. Man is an animal and all life is a product of evolution; 3. Man has no immortal soul so there is no future judgment; 4. Religion is a by-product of evolution and social development. Secular humanism must replace outdated concepts as in Christianity and Judaism; 5. There are no absolute values; 6. Humanism rejects all religious morals and concepts of right and wrong; 7. Humanism is a religion; 8. Humanists are social engineers out to remake the world in their image; 9. Humanists want to create a heaven on earth through collectivistic (communist) socialistic utopia; 10. In that socialistic amoral utopia there is no room for traditional religion of any kind; 11. There is no faith or hope beyond this present world; 12. There can be no restraints put on humans in their pursuit for sensual pleasure (hedonism); 13. There is an emphasis on living for the moment; 14. Traditional religion and religious expression must give way to a global humanistic one world religion; 15. Humanists have a collectivistic/Marxist view of economics. In 1973 the Humanist Manifesto II was published with an updated blueprint for a new One World Order. Even though the manifesto was updated, not much has changed because Humanism was founded upon principles of self-empowerment, critical thinking, reason, curiosity, and doing good for the sake of the other. Humanism requires no authoritarian figures to control one’s thinking or motivate one’s actions because what is right for me may not be right for you. Today all restraints are off, and the Humanist feels empowered and free. The global effort has begun to control governments and laws and has even affected modern-day religious thought; the years of pushing their ideas in the world of academia and the media with Hollywood at its side, about this new age of “the Human Right” and “Social Justice” and basically this: “All for one and one for all.” Socialism and even Communism that they have been pushing for decades has begun to pay off. Even if we realize it or not, Secular Humanism, or should I say the religion of Babylon, has played a part throughout history. We have seen the breakdown of every area of our lives. History has been repeating itself over and over again, but with greater influence as the population has exploded over the centuries. We see Paul’s words to Timothy (2 Timothy 3:1-4) about how the people will be in the end times is totally correct. Our walk with God has become cold. We see, in Revelation 2-3, Yeshua telling the 7 churches that they need to come back to their first love and do the things they did at first. He tells them they are holding onto the teachings of Baal and the Nicolatians (Humanism) and committing acts of immorality. They were tolerating the false prophetess Jezebel (Humanist teachings) who was leading them astray to commit immorality. Yeshua calls it Satanic teaching. He tells them that they are soiling their garments. They thought they were alive, but actually they were dead. Yeshua calls it all a lie. He tells them that they are lukewarm and that He will spit them out. They think that they are rich but they are poor, miserable, and naked. He tells them that they need to repent. This was for the church then and this is for the church now. Satan’s counterfeit religion has come through the ages, and he has taken down so many before us because he is so crafty.
Today, the world has a lot to offer, especially here in America. The church is not even close to what it was in the previous centuries. We have fallen into Humanism if we realize it or not. So many people believe that they no longer need the Ten Commandments. So many people are into social justice that they believe that they, and not God, need to bring about an equal world. Today the church is seeker-friendly and so politically correct that sin and repentance are no longer preached. We believe that we can not fall from grace, even though we see in the parables of Yeshua that that is not correct. The door will be closed to many who think they are standing but are not. Yeshua tells us in Matthew 7:21-23, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day, many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’” We may go to church or to Bible studies, but do we seek God out for His will in our lives? Do we pray when we need to make a decision to find out what God thinks about it? I have known people who prayed for God to open a door, and when several doors opened they believed that it was God opening every door, and so they chose whichever job had the better pay, never considering to ask God His will. This is all Humanism. We must learn to seek God out and to pray things through, and that takes time and even perseverance, waiting upon God and trusting Him. But if we do not, then we rely on our own intuition or our own resources, and that is all Humanism. Whenever we leave God out of our lives or when He is not the center of our lives, then that is Humanism. When we live outside of His Word, it is Humanism. When we start to think that something is owed to us, that is Humanism. We cannot earn anything because God is the one who gives us everything, and when we start to think differently, that is Humanism. So we must beware lest we fall. Examine yourself to see if you are still in the faith as 1 Corinthians 13:5 tells us, “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Messiah Yeshua is in you—unless indeed you fail the test?”