The Lord Will Destroy Babylon

 Fire and sword are but slow engines of destruction in comparison with the gossiper. (Source Unknown).

Destruction

In the closing verses of this chapter, Isaiah speaks of the destruction of Babylon. The city of ancient Babylon was a magnificent place, covering over 100 acres that was surrounded by a double walled system of defense. History reveals that the walls were 85 feet thick and 11 miles long, with the outer walls being approximately 25 feet wide and guarded with towers of 65 feet. There were eight major city gates named after various Babylonian cities. In the midst of all of this was a tower 228 feet high, known as the Tower of Babylon. On the top of this stood the temple mardick which it was said contained a solid gold statue weighing 52,000 pounds. Isaiah describes how this city, because of her pride and godless idolatry would be overthrown by God. He likens the destruction of their great city to the time when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah in (Gen. 19:19). This overthrow was done by the Assyrians who were God’s instruments of wrath under King Sennacherib.

Even before Babylon became a world power, Isaiah prophesied that it would shine for a while but its destruction when it came would be so complete that the land would never again be inhabited. Isaiah describes this devastation (vv. 17-22). He says that it will be a place for generations where no inhabitants will dwell and no tents or flocks; but instead owls and wild beasts will occupy the land.

The place where their great city once stood in present day Chag, still lies in utter ruin, buried under mounds of dirt and sand. Ultimately, Babylon will again be rebuilt and then destroyed by God a final time (Rev. 18). It is clear that Isaiah’s prophecy describes something more significant than the ups and downs of an ancient city. He saw in the fall of Babylon a picture of “the day of the Lord,” the time when God will pour out His final judgment on the whole world (v. 11).

Application

God has a purpose in everything that happens and His ultimate purpose in this world will be fulfilled. All I need to do is ask Him on a daily basis to help me fit into this purpose and glorify His name.

Isaiah 13:17-22 (English Standard Version)

Behold, I am stirring up the Medes against them, who have no regard for silver and do not delight in gold. Their bows will slaughter the young men; they will have no mercy on the fruit of the womb; their eyes will not pity children. And Babylon, the glory of kingdoms, the splendor and pomp of the Chaldeans, will be like Sodom and Gomorrah when God overthrew them. It will never be inhabited or lived in for all generations; no Arab will pitch his tent there; no shepherds will make their flocks lie down there. But wild animals will lie down there, and their houses will be full of howling creatures; there ostriches will dwell, and there wild goats will dance. Hyenas will cry in its towers, and jackals in the pleasant palaces; its time is close at hand and its days will not be prolonged.

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