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"As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall,
so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth."
By Ken Raggio
Written in 1998, Updated 2009
Geographically, IRAQ is the modern placeholder of ancient Babylon. Babylon is mentioned in the Bible more often than Abraham, and those references have as much to do with modern times as ancient. Therefore, it is an inescapable conclusion that IRAQ is significant in prophecies for the last days.
As the most infamous enemy of Israel for all of time, Babylon is the subject of countless prophecies. Many of those prophecies were fulfilled in ancient times, but an amazing number of them are being fulfilled in these modern times.
These are extremely significant prophecies, and you would do well to acquaint yourself with them. If you live just a little while longer, you are going to see the fulfillment of some of the most important prophecies ever made - and several of them will take place in Iraq.
Consider some important facts about Iraq, and its infamous and now-deceased dictator - Saddam Hussein.
In 1995, the Los Angeles Times published a story entitled, "Iraqis affirm support of President Hussein." It was a commentary on the public election of Saddam Hussein in Iraq. The dateline on the article was from "Babylon, Iraq." The article detailed the phenomenon of a nation voting for a dictator that had forcibly ruled it for twenty-seven years.
Apparently there were virtually NO DISSENTING VOTES! Everyone was afraid that if they cast a "no" vote against him, it would spell calamity for the voter -- the loss of food rations, government harassment, quite possibly jeopardizing their life. Of 7.5 million voters, not one dared speak publicly against Hussein.
Reports since that time revealed that Saddam killed hundreds of thousands of his own citizens (some estimates run as high as one million) in terrifying purges of his opposition, burying thousands at a time in mass graves - many of them BURIED ALIVE! Hussein used both chemical and biological weapons against his own people in efforts to maintain his despotic control of the country. In addition, Saddam killed another million Iranians in an unprovoked war. Casualties from all his atrocities cannot be counted, but were enormous.
Who was that infamous, powerful man who brazenly defied all the world, and struck fear in the hearts of those he ruled?
The Iraqi information minister, Hamid Youssef Hammadi, was quoted in those days as saying, "Saddam Hussein is a national hero. America had Abraham Lincoln, France had Napoleon and De Gaulle, and Egypt had Nasser. In America, you may not like Saddam, but he is a hero here. Saddam is the centerpiece of a brazen personality cult."
Was Saddam the modern-day equivalent of the ancient King Nebuchadnezzar?
"Nowhere is that more visible than in Babylon, where the Iraqi leader is cast as the modern-day equivalent of King Nebuchadnezzar, the warrior and builder who came to power in 605 BC at the tender age of 25."
Hussein, who helped stage a coup at age 31, restored part of Nebuchadnezzar's 600-room palace.
Atop some of the original bricks marked with Nebuchadnezzar's name are new bricks that declare, "In the era of Saddam Hussein, protector of Iraq, who rebuilt the Royal Palace."
A palace tour guide said, "Nebuchadnezzar was a man of war and peace, just as Saddam Hussein is. That's why people love him."
Babylon - Babel revisited
Both secular and biblical history record that ancient Babylon was the seat of the most powerful empire in the world of its day.
Babylon's famous "Hanging Gardens" were one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient World.
The western world, due to its Judeo-Christian orientation, remembers Babylon best for its role in capturing and destroying the nation of Israel in the seventh century BC. It was the captive home of Daniel and the three Hebrew children.
Babylon is also famous as the location of the ancient Tower of Babel. Nimrod built the first kingdom recorded in the Bible. He was a mighty man - a warrior and a tyrant. Ultimately, Babel and Babylon are synonymous terms with everything sinful and rebellious against God and His kingdom. At Babel, God came down and confused their tongues, and they "left off" building the tower.
Babylon was resurrected in our time.
Charles Dyer, author of "The Rise of Babylon" documents a fascinating event that took place in 1988 on the actual site of the ancient city of Babylon. It is a tale of intrigue.
"It is a cloudless September night, and the moon casts its shining image on the banks of the gentle Euphrates River. Thousands of guests and dignitaries walk by torch light to Babylon's Procession Street and enter the city from the north.
Instructed to line the streets along the massive walls, the guests obediently follow orders.
When the audience is in place, the dark-eyed man in charge nods and the procession begins.
Rows and rows of soldiers parade in, dressed in Babylonian tunics and carrying swords, spears and shields.
Interspersed among the ranks of soldiers are groups of musicians playing harps, horns and drums. Clusters of children carry palm branches, and runners bear bowls of incense. Then come soldiers and still more soldiers in a seemingly endless line of men and weapons.
After the procession, the guests attend a ceremony paying tribute to Ishtar, the mother goddess of Babylon."
The director of that event, the International Babylon Festival, was none other than Saddam Hussein. He was celebrating the revival of the city from ancient times.
By 1990, over sixty million bricks inscribed with Hussein's name were on top of the very bricks that Nebuchadnezzar had laid.
So Saddam Hussein is inextricably connected to modern Babylon, and in HIS OWN VIEW, considered himself to be the modern successor of Nebuchadnezzar.
Let's go back in time.
Let's go back to the VERY DAY that Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem and began its overthrow. The Bible gives us FOUR accounts of the same event - amazing corroboration of the facts!
FOUR TIMES the Bible records the EXACT DATE! The ninth year of Zedekiah's reign, and...
The tenth day of the tenth month.
"In the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, ...Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came, he, and all his host, against Jerusalem, and pitched against it; and they built forts against it round about," 2 Kings 25:1.
"In the ninth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the tenth month, came Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon and all his army against Jerusalem, and they besieged it," Jeremiah 39:1.
"In the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, that Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon came, he and all his army, against Jerusalem, and pitched against it, and built forts against it round about," Jeremiah 52:4.
"In the ninth year, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Son of man, write thee the name of the day, even of this same day: the king of Babylon set himself against Jerusalem this same day," Ezekiel 24:1-2.
The Torah counts the months of the Jewish calendar beginning with Nissan (March/April). The tenth Hebrew month (Tevet) occurs in January on the Gregorian calendar.
On this important day, "Asara b’Tevet" (Tenth of Tevet) of the year 3336 (or January 15, 588 BC), Nebuchadnezzar's Babylonian armies laid siege to Jerusalem. The city walls were breached thirty months later. The Holy Temple was destroyed on the 9th of Av in that year, and the Jews were exiled to Babylon for 70 years.
The "Vengeance Of His Temple"
It is important for us to always remember that Almighty God has an account to settle with Babylon because they were the destroyers of Israel and His Holy Temple. God judged Babylon in ancient times for their role in bringing about the destruction of Judah and Jerusalem.
Jeremiah prophesied that God would utterly destroy Babylon because of "the vengeance of His temple."
"...His device is against Babylon, to destroy it; because it is the vengeance of the LORD, the vengeance of his temple," Jeremiah 51:11.
Although ancient Babylon did fall into ruins for an entire epoch, the modern rise of Babylon only signals that it must fall again.
"The Beginning Of The End"
The SPECIFIC DAY when Nebuchadnezzar first laid siege on Jerusalem (January 15, 588 BC) is called "The Beginning of the End" of the First Jewish nation, because it began its fall and captivity in Babylon.
"Oddly" enough, AGAIN in modern times, Saddam Hussein (who often equated himself with Nebuchadnezzar) launched an attack on Israel beginning on January 17, 1991. At least 40 Scud missiles were fired on Israel between January 17 and February 23 (Source: Department of the Navy - Historical Center). Modern Babylon (Iraq) will not escape the vengeance of Almighty God any more than ancient Babylon did.
Saddam Hussein's countless atrocities, both in Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, and that region, roused the ire of all the world. George HW Bush took the case to the United Nations, and the entire world rose up against Hussein. This is the FIRST INCIDENCE in the history of the world, when an entire world government rose up against a single nation in this manner. This is very significant in history, and even more significant in Bible prophecy. Why?
The FIFTH TRUMPET WAR of Revelation 9 may have been the 1991 GULF WAR with SADDAM HUSSEIN.
(For an explanation of all SEVEN TRUMPETS, read this article.)
Revelation 9:1-2 says, "And the fifth angel sounded, ...And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit.
The "smoke of a great furnace" as well as the "sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit" could have been fulfilled in the Iraqi bombing of Kuwait, when for THREE MONTHS, Kuwaitis could not see the sunlight because of massive oil well fires set by Saddam Hussein's military strikes. Scientist Carl Sagan wrote in his book, The Demon-Haunted World, "it was pitch black at noon and temperatures dropped 4°–6 °C over the Persian Gulf."
"And there came out of the smoke locusts upon the earth: and unto them was given power, as the scorpions of the earth have power," Revelation 9:1.
The "Locusts" that operated for FIVE MONTHS (the duration of operation Desert Storm) might have been the military helicopters used by the Iraqis. Consider: they were "like horses prepared to battle," they had "faces of men," "breastplates of iron," the "sound of chariots of many horses running to battle," and "stings in their tails" (gunnery).
"The shapes of the locusts were like unto horses prepared unto battle; and on their heads were as it were crowns like gold, and their faces were as the faces of men. ...and their teeth were as the teeth of lions. And they had breastplates, as it were breastplates of iron; and the sound of their wings was as the sound of chariots of many horses running to battle. And they had tails like unto scorpions, and there were stings in their tails: and their power was to hurt men five months," Revelation 9:7-10.
"And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, neither any green thing," Revelation 9:4.
In the desert sands of Iraq, there is NO GRASS, and NO GREEN TREES anywhere in sight.
In verse 4b, it says, "…but only those men which have not the seal of God in their foreheads."
The IRAQI forces were almost 100% Muslim. Baathists, Sunnis and Shia Muslims. No Christians. Nobody in their midst would have had the seal of God on them.
"And to them it was given that they should not kill them," Revelation 9:5.
Wikipedia claims that “Coalition forces claimed they expressly avoided the targeting of civilians and damage to civilian areas, unlike previous campaigns such as the bombing of Tokyo in World War II.”
"...but that they should be tormented five months."
The Persian Gulf War or "Desert Storm" took place between August 1990 and February 1991. George Bush issued the Executive Order calling troops to a SIX MONTH period of service on November 12, 1990. On April 11, 1991, a cease-fire went into effect. The war was EXACTLY FIVE MONTHS long!
"…and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion, when he striketh a man."
One of the many controversial aspects of the Gulf War was the military’s use of artillery ordinance using depleted uranium (DU) shells. Simply put, their bullets were radioactive. Naturally, anything radioactive causes long-term health concerns. But in this case, the Depleted Uranium was used on the tips of armor-piercing shells because it is denser than lead, yet it "self-sharpens" as it ignites and burns on impact.
Consequently, these Depleted Uranium shells produce an extraordinary amount of dangerous shrapnel. The shrapnel that comes from these shells pierces like razor-blades, and because of its radioactive nature, it stings like a scorpion.
The prophecy said that “their torment was as the torment of a scorpion when it striketh a man.”
FURTHERMORE, the prophecy said, "And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them."
Reports and photos from the war showed entire battalions of Iraqi soldiers surrendering to Coalition forces, BEGGING FOR THEIR LIVES. They hated the war, and wanted out of it.
They had a king over them - "the destroyer."
"And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon," verse 11.
Moreover, their LEADER was named APOLLYON in the Greek language, and ABADDON in the Hebrew language. Those names mean "THE DESTROYER." Amazingly, the name SADDAM means "the destroyer." That fact was specifically offered by an elderly midwife who delivered SADDAM Hussein, and recalled that Saddam's mother named him "destroyer" because she had such a difficult time delivering him.
The "Destroyer" killed about 2.5 MILLION people!
According to The New York Times (October 7, 2007), "he [Saddam] murdered as many as a million of his people, many with poison gas. He tortured, maimed and imprisoned countless more. His unprovoked invasion of Iran is estimated to have left another million people dead. His seizure of Kuwait threw the Middle East into crisis. More insidious, arguably, was the psychological damage he inflicted on his own land. Hussein created a nation of informants — friends on friends, circles within circles — making an entire population complicit in his rule."
Risen to Fall Again?
In the days of the prophet Daniel, Nebuchadnezzar dreamed of an image whose head was of gold. Daniel interpreted the dream. Beginning with Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians represented by the head of gold, it depicted the progression of world empires from that time.
In the end of the dream (the end of the age), Daniel saw that the kingdom of God would crush all these man-made empires: "Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold," (Daniel 2:45.)
There is much about Babylon and its role in Bible prophecy. Babylon in the Scriptures comes to represent much more than merely the city of Babylon.
Babylon grew over the centuries to represent an entire world system, as well as an evil religious system ("Mystery Babylon"). See a separate article on this website that explains What is Mystery Babylon? There are many other prophecies that apply to those representations which are beyond the scope of this article.
The King of Babylon again oppresses Israel.
No other king ever captured and destroyed the nation of Israel except Nebuchadnezzar. Saddam Hussein, perceiving himself as the new King of Babylon, and self-appointed leader of the Arab world, fully intended to capture and destroy Israel again.
His ventures into Kuwait prior to the Gulf War were only his first adventures in rebuilding the entire ancient Babylonian empire, which would have included Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Kuwait and ISRAEL!
The City of Babylon will again be destroyed
Even though Babylon has lain in ruins for many centuries now, certain Bible prophecies concerning her destruction have not yet been fulfilled. Isaiah 13:19 says, "And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the beauty of the Chaldees' excellency, shall be as when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah."
Isaiah’s "burden" for Babylon, in chapter thirteen also included a terse warning: "Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty," (verse six).
God promised Israel that they would someday take up this taunt against the King of Babylon, "How hath the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!" Did Saddam's death enable that prophecy to be fulfilled? (Isaiah 14:4.)
Here, the utter destruction of the city of Babylon is likened unto
b.) the day of the Lord.
"And a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all. And the voice of harpers, and musicians, and of pipers, and trumpeters, shall be heard no more at all in thee; and no craftsman, of whatsoever craft he be, shall be found any more in thee; and the sound of a millstone shall be heard no more at all in thee; And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee:
It is possible that this scripture could be fulfilled BOTH in the geographical city of Babylon, Iraq AND also in "Mystery Babylon" (ROME), for the simple reason that God often uses shadow AND substance, typology and real-time fulfillment.
Just as God's actions in the Old Testament Tabernacle foreshadowed His actions in the New Testament Church, I believe that it is possible that God's actions in the geographical city of Babylon, Iraq could foreshadow and even FOREWARN His actions in Mystery Babylon, ROME.
News reports in late October 2000 declared that Iraq had subscribed over one million volunteers to mobilize in ground warfare against Israel. Prime Minister Barak of Israel announced to the Knesset in early November 2000 that he was prepared to use nuclear force against Iraq if necessary.
Although I have just made a case for the FIFTH TRUMPET WAR being the 1991 war, there is ANOTHER WAR, the SIXTH TRUMPET WAR, that also takes place in the region of the Euphrates River, which is in Iraq. The Sixth Trumpet war is FAR more calamitous than the Fifth Trumpet, and is destined to occur in the very near future.
When that event takes place, every thing Saddam rebuilt is likely to be suddenly reduced to a rubble of contaminated ashes that no one could even go near for thousands of years.
Since this article was originally written long before Saddam was deposed, many more significant things have happened in Iraq.
The most interesting thing about this entire scenario is that the Sixth Trumpet war of Revelation 9:13-21 EMANATES from the Euphrates River!
The United States and its coalition forces, at this writing have about 150,000 troops along the Euphrates River, fighting the war on terrorism in Iraq.
The Bible foretells a world war escalating from this region that will kill ONE-THIRD of mankind. That will be TWO BILLION DEATHS! I expect this war to occur between the revealing of the Antichrist in the Third Temple (in the middle of Daniel's Seventieth Week) and just before Armagededdon, but it may possibly occur sooner.
Since Iran, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Lebanon and most of the other Arab/Muslim states are now embroiled in the war against the West, and especially against Israel, we can easily see prophecy being fulfilled.
With President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran threatening to "wipe Israel off the face of the map," the nuclear threat is quickly escalating.
The very interesting twist of this all is that the Bible teaches, in Ezekiel 38 that RUSSIA (as Gog and Magog) will be the GUARDIAN of IRAN, and will come against ISRAEL! This is ACTUALLY HAPPENING RIGHT NOW.
The further prophecies of the very, very end, when the SEVEN VIALS of God's wrath are described, speaks of the KINGS OF THE EAST coming against ISRAEL.
If you will look at a large map of the Middle East with Asia, you will see that the Kings of the East are: IRAN, RUSSIA, CHINA, PAKISTAN, AFGHANISTAN, SYRIA, and other.
All these nations are already complicit in nuclear weapons development. IRAN and PAKISTAN have both received nuclear weapons aid from Russia, China, Pakistan and North Korea.
I believe that the worst war in the history of the world is about to be fought in that region. The Bible declares it. Babylon is going to be left in massive ruin. And that will happen BEFORE Jesus Christ returns!
"As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth," Jeremiah 51:49.
I expect to see an Assyrian Antichrist given total control over Palestine. There will be a temporary seven-year agreement made, in which time the Third Temple will be built and occupied. Suddenly, after 3 1/2 years, that agreement will be broken, and the Temple will be closed. The Assyrian will spend the next 3 1/2 years completely destroying the State of Israel. Only 144,000 Jews will survive, because they will be sequestered away in another place.
For what it's worth, I suspect that the OIC - Organization of the Islamic Conference (25 Arab-Muslim nations) will play a significant role in this last scenario, with the real possibility that the Secretary-General of the OIC (currently, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu) may become the biblical Antichrist.
We are most certainly in biblical times. The events we are witnessing are far more dramatic than any of the Old Testament stories.
The meaning? We are living in the end times. Better get ready to meet God!
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Continue to "The Seven Trumpets"
Continue to "Turkey: Where East Meets West"
"Daniel Chapter 11 - Where The Antichrist Will Come From"
See my article: Man's Need for Salvation
See several PHOTOS of Modern and Ancient Babylon: PHOTOS and FACTS ABOUT IRAQ
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