It has been said that the surest way to aim large groups of people in a particular, desired direction is to push them hard towards its opposite. I can’t help but wonder if that’s what we’re seeing in the world today. Is a steady diet of violence, racism, political unrest, and division creating a hunger for peace, inclusion, universal governance, and unity? I think that it could be so. And as I contemplate these things I can’t help but imagine that such a climate sets the stage perfectly for Babylon and the Beast. “And it makes me wonder.”
The last time that all the people of the earth were unified and of the same mind was after the Flood, on the plains of Shinar, in ancient Babylon.
Now the whole earth had one language and the same words. And as people migrated from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. And they said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly.” And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth.
If you haven’t guessed it already this is a segue into the story we know as the Tower of Babel. Mankind was all together, of one mind and one accord, seeking to establish themselves as god. Babylon, in its earliest geopolitical and prophetic form. And perhaps it is here that we catch our first glimpse of the “beast” and see the essence of “Mystery Babylon, Babylon the great, mother of prostitutes and of earth’s abominations”: mankind, unified and deified. We are, you are, I am god. Our desires, our appetites are not to be denied for we are divine. Let us recognize the common divinity we share as men, and establish ourselves as one upon the face of the earth. We will put an end to war, racism, political divide, any and everything that would separate us. There is no religion other than the worship of ourselves. Together, we shall prevail! “And it makes me wonder.”
Many, if not the majority of Christians see the world in a state of progressive deterioration. “Things are only gonna get worse,” they say. But what if things “get better”? What if people start coming together, loving each other, and laying all of their differences aside? Doesn’t that sound like the exact thing we’ve all been praying for? Doesn’t it sound beautiful? Surely, only a god could accomplish such a thing! “And it makes me wonder.”
…and all who dwell on earth will worship it [the beast], everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who was slain.
And the dwellers on earth whose names have not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world will marvel to see the beast, because it was and is not and is to come.
For years now I have pondered and prayed over II Thessalonians 2. The passage is never far from the forefront of my mind. And although many now see Islam as the Beast or Babylon or the end- time religion, I always come back to the place where it is said of the “antichrist/beast,”…who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God.” These words remind me of how man sought to establish himself as God upon the plains of Shinar. “And it makes me wonder.”
This is not the place where I put a stake in the ground and build my whole eschatological paradigm. But it would seem that the time is right for a season of “peace,” “self-realization,” and “human divinization.” Rampant violence, racism, political unrest, and division are pushing humanity to seek another direction, one that may appear good, but its true end is destruction. Even many within the Body of Christ have abandoned their First Love for “good causes.” Among the religions of the world, Islam has successfully been demonized, and soon true Christianity will be labeled as hateful. Why not simply do away with all religion and focus upon the only thing suitable for worship- US.
Then I saw the beast and the kings of the world and their armies gathered together to fight against the one [Jesus,] sitting on the horse and his army. And the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who did mighty miracles on behalf of the beast—miracles that deceived all who had accepted the mark of the beast and who worshiped his image. Both the beast and his false prophet were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. Their entire army was killed by the sharp sword that came from the mouth of the one riding the white horse. And the vultures all gorged themselves on the dead bodies.
“And it makes me wonder.”