Today’s reading: Revelation 18
Today’s reading is much more straightforward than many of the others in the book of Revelation. Having previously established that Babylon is code for Rome, we see the fall of the great pagan city vividly described. The destruction of the city is portrayed as a judgment upon it for its many sins, including martyring many faithful saints. The many merchants that once filled the city and frequented it for commerce can do nothing to save it. In fact, despite once having frequented the city they now “keep their distance”. An angel throws a great millstone into the sea by the city to mark its final destruction. In doing so, we are then presented with a list of things that are now absent from the city. They are:
“… the sound of harpers and minstrels, … of flute players and trumpeters, … a craftsman of any craft …, and the sound of the millstone …, and the light of a lamp …, and the voice of bridegroom and bride.” Revelation 18:22-24
These are things that represent the religious. Music for the temples, craftsmen to build sacred objects, lamps to show the presence of God, and of course the Bride and groom. Thus, we see that the destruction of the city will happen in conjunction with the loss of religion.
Tomorrow: Revelation 19